WASHINGTON, D.C., April 29, 2019 — The Atlantic Council today announced a $25-million gift from business leader and philanthropist Adrienne Arsht to endow the Adrienne Arsht Center for Resilience. The Center, which recently received a $30-million grant from The Rockefeller Foundation, will be renamed the Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center effective May 1.
By identifying, implementing, and scaling solutions to the urgent crises of climate change, migration, and security, the new Center seeks to enhance the resilience of one billion people by 2030.
“We are setting an ambitious goal, supported by the expertise and analysis of the Urban Institute, of ‘Reaching One Billion People with Resilience Solutions by 2030,’” said Frederick Kempe, president and chief executive officer of the Atlantic Council. “By combining Adrienne Arsht’s vision and generosity with The Rockefeller Foundation’s world-renowned leadership and experience, we are determined to provide measurable, scalable solutions to address some of the 21st century’s greatest challenges and opportunities.”
In 2016, Arsht, chairman emerita of TotalBank and executive vice chair of the Atlantic Council, provided the vision and resources to found the Adrienne Arsht Center for Resilience at the Atlantic Council. “At a time when volatility and change are the only certainties, we must find ways to enable resilience among individuals, systems, and communities,” said Arsht. “I am enormously proud to partner with The Rockefeller Foundation to launch the Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center at the Atlantic Council.”
The Center will deploy a range of evidence-based and innovative approaches, including policy frameworks, finance and risk transfer tools, and technology and communications strategies, including the performing arts, to achieve its goal of reaching one billion people by 2030.
“As early pioneers in the field of resilience for nearly a decade and a half, The Rockefeller Foundation remains committed to forging new pathways and partnerships that help vulnerable people and communities withstand the challenges of a rapidly changing world,” said Rajiv J. Shah, president of The Rockefeller Foundation. “As we look to the future, we are optimistic that millions of people around the world will continue to benefit from innovative solutions that strengthen resilience in their communities. With committed, capable partners like Adrienne Arsht and the Atlantic Council, the movement to build a more resilient world grows even stronger.”
The Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center will be led by recently appointed Kathy Baughman McLeod, who brings a wealth of global expertise in risk and resilience on issues such as climate change, natural disasters, financial tools, climate adaptation, and insurance solutions. She previously served as global environmental and social risk executive at Bank of America and as global managing director, climate risk and resilience, at the Nature Conservancy.
“It’s gratifying to be in a position to help create and deliver solutions on the ground in communities and across geographies,” noted Baughman McLeod. “The Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center is committed to bold and accelerated action. The need is urgent and partnerships will be critical to achieving our goal of reaching one billion people globally by 2030.”
In the weeks to come, the Center will announce results-oriented partnerships with public and private sector entities ranging from the insurance sector, financial institutions, national government ministries, major city leaders, and arts organizations to better identify, communicate, and mitigate risks and best position the Center to deliver on its goal.
“In the face of such complex and intergenerational forces, resilience demands a deep knowledge of risk and a capability to drive community-based impact,” said Francis Bouchard, group head of public affairs and sustainability at Zurich Insurance Group, a global leader in risk management. “This new partnership between two leaders in the field is uniquely positioned to expand the use of risk-informed decision-making and catalyze much-needed solutions to the growing protection gap. We look forward to collaborating with the Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center and being part of their ambition to improve the resilience of one billion people.”
“Resilience is now in the DNA of Miami-Dade County and across our vulnerable, but risk-aware, South Florida Region,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Giménez. “We are proud to call Adrienne Arsht a friend and community icon. We are grateful for our work with The Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities initiative with our partners at the City of Miami and Miami Beach. We will continue the work that shows the world that Miami is adapting and that we can see more resilient citizens and an economically thriving community now, and in the future. We look forward to a long and fruitful partnership with the Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center.”