The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
Humanities and Arts
Alexander was appointed as President of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation in March 2018. Over the course of her career, she has built a number of highly successful institutions--including the Poetry Center at Smith College, the African American Studies department at Yale University, the poetry non-profit Cave Canem, and the Ford Foundation's programs in journalism, arts and culture. Alexander served as the Wun Tsun Tam Mellon Professor in the Humanities at Columbia University. Earlier, she was the Director of Creativity and Free Expression at the Ford Foundation, where she co-designed the Art for Justice Fund. She spent fifteen years on the faculty of Yale University (2000-15), where she was the inaugural Frederick Iseman Professor of Poetry, and earlier, the Thomas E. Donnelly Professor of African American Studies and as the Chair of the African American Studies Department.