Friend Trustees

Friend trustee Robert Pennoyer with family trustees Olivia Farr (left) and Trina Whitridge.
(Courtesy of Hatch family)

The John Merck Fund, it has to be said, did have a secret weapon: our friend trustees. These non-family board members enriched our discussions, improved the quality of our decisions, and not infrequently saved us from ourselves, all the while helping to make JMF’s work interesting and fun.

Six were attorneys, two were scientists, one was a business leader, another was a venture capitalist, and three had extensive nonprofit operational chops. All provided wisdom, open-mindedness, patience, a sense of curiosity, and unfailing good humor, ten for at least one decade, and five for two decades or longer.

Following our spendout, family board members and staff reflected on JMF’s great good fortune to have worked not only with outstanding grantees, but also these wonderful friend trustees: 

Orville Schell (1970-1987)

Richard Kimball (1970-1989)

Huyler Held (1975-2009)

Robert Pennoyer (1983-2007)

Arnold Hiatt (1989-2009)

Frederica Perera (1999-2022)

Anne Stetson (2001-2022)

Robert Gardiner (2007-2022)

Susan Murray (2009-2010)

Richard Burnes (2009-2014)

William Roberts (2012-2022)

Roger McFadden (2012-2022)

Ruth Hennig (2017-2022)