La June Montgomery Tabron named president and CEO of W.K. Kellogg Foundation

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La June Montgomery Tabron, an African-American Detroit native, will become the president and CEO of the the esteemed W.K. Kellogg Foundation on January 1, 2014, according to the company’s press release.

The 51-year-old will be the first African-American to lead the organization in its 83-year history.

“After an extensive search that included outstanding candidates from both the United States and abroad, La June emerged as our new leader because of her strengths in so many areas of the foundation, and her deep and unwavering commitment to the foundation’s mission, vision and values,” said Rod Gillum, chair of the WKKF board. “As our executive vice president, La June has collaborated with the leadership team to develop and implement WKKF’s programming based on a deep understanding of grantees’ local knowledge and needs of their community. She has shown that she knows how to strike a balance between the board, staff and grantees, all while holding our high standard for impact.”

Tabron has been affiliated with Kellogg since she was 24 years old and currently serves as their executive vice president of operations and treasurer.

Tabron earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and a master’s degree in business administration from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill.

“Growing up in a family of ten children in inner-city Detroit, I know firsthand the day-to-day challenges faced by the families we seek to help,” she said in the press release. “In so many ways, my own journey illustrates the power and impact of what is possible with the right conditions.”

Tabron is joining the ranks of the very few black CEOs in the U.S. The Huffington Post reports that among “Fortune 500 companies, there are only six black CEO’s. Among those just one is a woman.

Kellogg is among the largest philanthropic foundations in the country. According to their website, they work to “create the conditions where vulnerable children can realize their full potential in school, work and life.”