The Erie Community Foundation Announces the Retirement of President Michael L. Batchelor

March 13, 2020

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The Erie Community Foundation Board of Trustees today announced that Michael L. Batchelor, president of the region’s largest grantmaker, will retire at the end of 2020.  “When Mike was hired in 1990, The Erie Community Foundation had a $20M corpus and 53 named endowments,” said Board Chair Tim Hunter. “Today, there are over 850 funds within the Foundation with a collective market value of $286M.  Mike has done an excellent job and filling his shoes will be difficult.” 

During his tenure, Batchelor worked with local donors to raise $409 million for a wide variety of charitable causes.  He built and supervised a grants process to fairly distribute $311M.  Under the umbrella of The Erie Community Foundation, Batchelor helped establish community foundations serving Corry, Findley Lake, North East, and Union City.   He established The Nonprofit Partnership, a nonprofit capacity-building organization that promotes enhanced governance and strives to make its 350 member organizations more efficient and impactful. 

He also created Erie Vital Signs, a foundation leadership initiative to track key indicators measuring our county’s well-being in eight topical areas.  Under his leadership, the Erie Community Foundation created Erie Gives, an online giving day that has raised over $26M for hundreds of local nonprofit organizations over the past nine years.  To promote inclusion and diversity, Batchelor helped launch the Erie Women's Fund and the LGBT Community Endowment.  

The Erie Community Foundation has engaged Kittleman & Associates, a national executive search firm, to conduct a local and national search for its new President. Kittleman specializes in the recruitment of CEOs for tax-exempt nonprofit organizations, public charities, philanthropic organizations and community foundations, including Pittsburgh, Chicago and Louisville.

 “For the next few years, Mike will also remain available to assist The Erie Community Foundation on an as-needed basis,” said Hunter.  Batchelor also looks forward to serving community foundations across the Commonwealth and the nation on a limited consulting basis.

For the past 13 years, Batchelor has been at the forefront of County government efforts to establish a community college in Erie County.  He also worked to bring School-Based Health Centers and additional dental clinics to our community.  Most recently, he collaborated with leaders from Hamot Health Foundation, Magee-Womens Research Foundation, Penn State Behrend and UPMC to secure a $21M joint transformational philanthropy grant to establish the Magee-Womens Research Institute of Erie and a new biomedical research lab at Penn State Behrend’s Knowledge Park.    

Batchelor currently serves as secretary of Erie Downtown Development Corporation (EDDC).  Through his leadership, he helped to raise additional support for the EDDC, which will increase the downtown population and tax base of our City.  He also chaired the public engagement committee for Destination Erie, a HUD-funded, $1.8M planning process for our region.   In service to his community, he has served on the boards of Arts Council of Erie, Community Health Net, Episcopal Cathedral of Saint Paul, Erie Regional Chamber and Growth Partnership, The Nonprofit Partnership, and Rotary Club of Erie. He has also served on various volunteer committees for Gannon University, Hamot Health Foundation, Saint Vincent Hospital and United Way of Erie County, and serves, ex officio, as a trustee of The Erie Community Foundation. 

“It has been the honor of a lifetime to work with talented staff, generous donors, committed nonprofits and first-class boards to help the community that I love,” said Batchelor.  “I have never been more optimistic about our community’s future, and I know future leadership will continue to build upon our accomplishments.”