Executive Director and President
Emily Tow is executive director and board president of The Tow Foundation, a private family foundation with $220 million in…
Emily Tow is executive director and board president of The Tow Foundation, a private family foundation with $220 million in assets and approximately $15 million in annual giving. She joined the Foundation’s Board of Directors at its inception in 1988 and has been leading the foundation since 1995.
An innovator and changemaker, Emily leads with the Foundation with a highly collaborative approach. Under Emily’s leadership, the Foundation has developed and advanced its vision of a society where all people have the opportunity to enjoy a high quality of life and have a voice in their community. Emily oversees the strategic direction of the Foundation through cultivating its collaborative efforts, shaping major initiatives, and setting long-term objectives.
Emily is currently a trustee of Barnard College and New York Public Radio. She was appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo to the New York State Juvenile Justice Advisory Group and also serves on the Advisory Committee of the American Theatre Wing. Emily advances the Foundation’s priorities through her engagement with numerous local, state and national committees and coalitions. She is also an active member of Grantmakers for Effective Organizations and Exponent Philanthropy, and former chair of Philanthropy New York.
Emily speaks nationally and internationally about the Foundation’s work, its commitment to advocacy as a key to achieving social change, and the value of family philanthropy. She has received numerous honors and awards, including Connecticut Council for Philanthropy’s John H. Filer Award for leadership in promoting private action for the public good.
Emily earned her B.A. in History from Barnard College. She received an honorary Doctor of Criminal Justice degree from University of New Haven in 2017.