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Tonya Allen

President and CEO, The Skillman Foundation

Tonya Allen is the president and CEO of The Skillman Foundation. Her two-decade-long career has centered on pursuing, executing, and investing in ideas that improve her hometown of Detroit and increase opportunities for its people, particularly its children, who live in under-resourced communities.

Before joining The Skillman Foundation in 2004, Allen worked as a program officer for both the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation and the Thompson-McCully Foundation. She founded Detroit Parent Network and led the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Rebuilding Communities Initiative in Detroit.

Allen has been instrumental in many successful philanthropic, government, and community initiatives, including the 10-year and $120-million Good Neighborhoods Initiative, the creation and expansion of Grow Detroit’s Young Talent, co-chairing the Coalition for the Future of Detroit Schoolchildren, and serving as chair for the Campaign for Black Male Achievement and co-chair for My Brother’s Keeper Detroit and Executives’ Alliance for Boys and Men of Color.

She serves on numerous boards including Oakland University, Council on Foundations, Council of Michigan Foundations, United Way for Southeastern Michigan, and Campaign for Black Male Achievement. Allen holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology and master’s degrees in social work and public health, all from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor.

She’s married to husband, Louis, and has three daughters, Phylicia, Brianna, and Alanna.