Obama Foundation Selects First President

Former Deputy National Security Advisor for International Economics and Deputy Director of the National Economic Council Adewale “Wally” Adeyemo will join The Obama Foundation in Chicago as its first president.

Adeyemo will manage the foundation’s day-to-day operations, helping to implement the organization’s overall strategic goals and vision. During the past several years, the Obama Foundation, in Chicago, has grown from a staff of a dozen to nearly 200 and launched a number of programs to support the next generation of leaders making positive change in their communities.

“Wally is the ideal person to help lead the Foundation team as we continue to grow the impact of our global civic engagement programs and advance the Obama Presidential Center,” said Board Chair Martin Nesbitt. “Given his executive experience in both the public and private sectors and previous service with President Obama, Wally is well positioned to help us continue to translate our sky-high ambitions into operational reality through daily leadership of our talented staff.”

Adeyemo joins the foundation as it advances its work to build the Obama Presidential Center in Chicago and grows its civic engagement programming. Since 2017, the Foundation has launched a series of programs that support leaders around the United States and the world who work to create positive change in their communities

Adeyemo was appointed in 2015 as President Obama’s senior international economics adviser, responsible for coordinating the policymaking process related to international finance, trade and investment, energy, and environmental issues. Adeyemo also has held several senior management positions at the U.S. Department of the Treasury, including Senior Adviser and Deputy Chief of Staff. He also helped launch the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in 2011 as its first Chief of Staff.

He most recently was a senior advisor at BlackRock and the Center for Strategic and International Studies. Adeyemo serves on the board of a number of organizations devoted to community empowerment and addressing inequality, including the Golden State Opportunity Foundation and Demos. His full bio can be found below.