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McKnight hires three staff

The McKnight Foundation has hired Jody Speer, Rita Lee, and Jeff Henebury; the new employees joined the foundation staff in February, March, and April respectively.

Jody Speer, director of information technology, has over 27 years’ experience in security, governance, risk management, compliance strategy, IT operations, and software and systems development. She has expertise in both the strategic and tactical aspects of information technology, and an extensive project and program management background that includes large-scale, multiple-site, multiple-country deployments with onshore and offshore teams. Before coming to McKnight, she provided information security and risk management in a wide variety of contexts, including CliftonLarsonAllen LLC, Hennepin County, Bluestem Brands, Forward Hindsight, and others. Speer is a 1986 graduate of University of Wisconsin–River Falls with a Bachelor of Science degree, and during her career has earned several IT certifications including CISA (information systems auditor), CRISC (risk and information systems control), and PCIP (payment card industry professional).

Rita Lee, meeting, event, and administrative assistant, has more than eight years of administrative experience, having worked prior to McKnight as an administrative and marketing assistant at Henson & Efron, P.A., in Minneapolis and an office aide at DeWitt Wallace Library at Macalester College in St. Paul. A graduate of Macalester, Lee also has volunteered as a reading tutor to first- and second-graders and as a student research assistant on a project documenting the cultural history and impact of Hmong story cloths.

Jeff Henebury, program assistant for Education & Learning and Midwest Climate & Energy, most recently worked as a senior administrative and merchandising specialist for Target and in multiple positions at the Walker Art Center. He also has experience at a variety of regional book publishing companies, including McKnight grantees Graywolf Press and Coffee House Press. Also a Macalester alum, Henebury was selected to present at the 2010 National Undergraduate Literature Conference and received the 2011 Sherman Prize for creative prose.

About The McKnight Foundation

The McKnight Foundation, a Minnesota-based family foundation, seeks to improve the quality of life for present and future generations. Founded in 1953 and independently endowed by William L. and Maude L. McKnight, the foundation had assets of approximately $2.2 billion and granted about $88 million in 2014. Learn more at, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

April 2015