Kelly Pollock
Berges Family Foundation
Chief Executive Officer

Berges Family Foundation Hires
Kelly Pollock as Chief Executive Officer

Former COCA Leader to Serve as Inaugural CEO

July 12, 2022

The Berges Family Foundation announced that Kelly Pollock has been named as the Chief Executive Officer. Pollock will take the helm in mid-September.

Pollock’s impact on the community has been significant. Committed to using the arts to address inequities, she shaped COCA’s vision and its success, using the power of the arts and education to build a vibrant St. Louis that is creative, connected, and inclusive.

Pollock has more than 20 years of senior leadership experience at COCA – Center of Creative Arts – the fourth largest multidisciplinary community arts center in the US and a leader in innovative arts education. This month, Pollock steps down as the Executive Director after a 24-year career at the nationally recognized organization.

Under Pollock’s leadership, the organization launched innovative new programs and partnerships, and experienced significant growth of its arts education programs, enrollments, and fundraising. Most recently, Pollock led COCA’s Create Our Future Campaign, securing $49 million to grow its endowment and expand its historic facility, including its new 460-seat state-of-the-art theatre – the Catherine B. Berges Theatre – made possible by a gift from the Berges Family Foundation.

“We are thrilled to welcome Kelly to our Foundation family. As we complete our first decade as a foundation, we look to Kelly’s dynamic, impactful, and innovative approaches in the not-for-profit sector to help create the future of the Berges Family Foundation,” said co-founder, James Berges. The Foundation has made meaningful contributions to St Louis’ most treasured institutions and has also provided critical funds to capable, less well-known organizations. The Foundation plans on continued growth, providing meaningful impact in the community for the foreseeable future.

The Berges Family Foundation was founded in 2012 by James G. Berges and the late Catherine B. Berges to support the institutions and organizations that make Saint Louis a great place to live, visit, work, and invest.

As CEO, Pollock will lead all aspects of the Foundation’s grantmaking and administration, working closely with lead trustee, Elizabeth Mannen Berges to build out the programmatic investment strategy. Additionally, Pollock will serve as a key community representative for the Foundation, leading collaborative and capacity-building efforts that strengthen the St. Louis community.

“I am thrilled to serve as the CEO of the Berges Family Foundation. I’ve had the opportunity to work closely with the Berges family and see first-hand how thoughtful, smart, and impactful their approach to philanthropy is,” said Pollock. “I’m honored to be able to build upon that work, supporting organizations and leaders who are advancing the St. Louis region.”

With this hire, the Foundation will establish its official office at the new Delmar DivINe complex, which opened its doors in late 2021. Delmar DivINe is a not-for-profit center bringing together social service organizations, capacity-building programs, retail services, and housing in a collaborative, shared space to help transform communities north of Delmar Boulevard. Delmar DivINe was founded by Maxine Clark, founder and former CEO of Build-A-Bear Workshop.

Pollock received a BA degree in History from Washington University in St. Louis and a Master of Public Policy degree from the University of Missouri, St. Louis. She is a 2016 USA Eisenhower Fellow and has been recognized as a YWCA Leader of Distinction, a Saint Louis Visionary award winner, and a Most Influential Business Women by the St. Louis Business Journal.