Fostering communities of educated, informed, and engaged citizens.

Executive Team

David D. Hiller, President and Chief Executive Officer

David Hiller

David D. Hiller is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Robert R. McCormick Foundation, a role he's held since July 2009. 

Previously, David was Publisher and Chief Executive Officer of the Los Angeles Times, and before that, Publisher and Chief Executive Officer of the Chicago Tribune.  David joined Tribune Company in 1988 as Vice President/General Counsel, and held a number of leadership positions at the company, including President of Tribune Interactive.

Prior to Tribune, David was a partner with the Chicago law firm of Sidley & Austin. Before that, he served two years at the U. S. Department of Justice as Special Assistant to Attorney General William French Smith and as Associate Deputy Attorney General.  During 1979 and 1980, Hiller was a law clerk to United States Court of Appeals Judge Malcolm Wilkey and Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart.

A native of the Chicago area, David graduated from Harvard College and Harvard Law School.  He is chairman of the board of the Chicago History Museum and serves on the boards of The Field Museum, the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center, and Thrive Chicago.  He is a life trustee of Roosevelt University. He is a member of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, the Commercial Club of Chicago, where he serves as chair of the Veterans Working Group, and the Economic Club of Chicago.

Read David's Blogs

Donald A. Cooke, Senior Vice President of Philanthropy

Donald Cooke

Donald A. Cooke began serving as senior vice president for philanthropy of the McCormick Foundation in May 2005. He provides oversight and management to the Foundation’s grant-making programs, which include communities, democracy, education, special initiatives, and veterans, and he has worked extensively on the issue of gun violence in Chicago.

Cooke began his career in 1981 in Philadelphia at the Franklin Institute Science Museum. Over the course of 12 years, he served as director of the Fels Planetarium, director of development, vice president for external affairs, acting museum director and executive vice president for programs and planning. He subsequently served for eight years at the Philadelphia Orchestra as vice president for external affairs. Prior to his current position, Cooke was the vice president for institutional advancement for The Field Museum in Chicago.

A Philadelphia native, Cooke was educated at Williams College and Harvard University, where he studied astrophysics. He is the author of many papers and articles and often lectures on astronomy and nonprofit management. He is author of the book “The Life and Death of Stars,” published by Crown Publishers in 1985.

He currently serves on the boards of The Chicago Council on Global Affairs, Illinois Joining Forces, Truth in Accounting, and the USO of Illinois and has served as chairman of the City of Lake Forest Historic Preservation Commission. He is the past chairman of Forefront, an Illinois-based association for nonprofits. Cooke and his wife Sally reside in Lake Forest, Illinois.

Read Don's Blogs

David J. Granat, Chief Investment Officer

David Granat

David J. Granat began serving as the chief investment officer of the Robert R. McCormick Foundation in June 2007. Granat began his financial career at Quaker Oats Company, a consumer-goods company, where he held a series of financial management positions, including manager of corporate finance, manager of financial analysis and internal auditor. He was named Quaker’s assistant treasurer in 1982.

He subsequently joined the Tribune Company as treasurer in 1985. Prior to joining the Foundation, Granat served as the Tribune Company’s vice president / investments, where he was responsible for managing the company’s pension fund, 401(k) assets, and other investment portfolios.

A Chicago native, Granat holds a master’s of business administration degree and a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Illinois and is a certified public accountant. Granat and his wife, Lorie, reside in Chicago.

Rebekah Levin, Director of Evaluation and Learning

Rebekah Levin

Rebekah Levin is the Director of Evaluation and Learning for the Robert R. McCormick Foundation, guiding the Foundation in evaluating the impact of its philanthropic giving and its involvement in community issues. She is working both with the Foundation’s grantmaking programs, and also with the parks, gardens, and museums at Cantigny Park.

Rebekah joined the Foundation from the University of Illinois at Chicago, where she was Research Associate Professor in the College of Education, designing and implementing evaluations for foundations and nonprofits and teaching evaluation and research methods. Prior to UIC, Rebekah was with the Center for Impact Research in Chicago for 10 years, serving as its Executive Director from 2001 to 2006. Rebekah earned her MA and Ph.D. in Social Service Administration from the University of Chicago. Her bachelor’s degree is from Oberlin College in Oberlin, Ohio.

Louis J. Marsico, Senior Vice President of Operations

Louis Marsico

Louis J. Marsico Jr. was promoted to senior vice president of operations on June 1, 2005. Marsico had been serving as the vice president of finance and administration of the Robert R. McCormick Foundation since December 1999. He joined the foundation as director of finance in 1987.

Marsico started his financial career in 1981 as a staff auditor with the public accounting firm Arthur Young. After two years in auditing he moved on to the divisional headquarters of the MCC Powers unit of Mark Controls as their junior financial analyst. Four years later, he left Powers as their manager of field planning and analysis to join the foundation.

A Chicago native, Marsico holds a bachelor’s of science in business management from Northeastern Illinois University and a master’s of business administration in finance from DePaul University. He is also a certified public accountant.

Currently, Marsico serves as a member of the DePaul University Finance Advisory Board, and a member of the Forefront Audit/Finance Committee.

Marsico and his wife Marlene live in Palatine, IL.

Sheau-ming Ross, Chief Financial Officer

Sheau-ming Ross

Sheau-ming Ross began serving as the Chief Financial Officer of the Robert R. McCormick Foundation in September 2016. Ross joins the McCormick Foundation with more than 18 years of finance, management, operations, and strategy experience. Ross was previously the Chief Financial Officer for Mattersight Corporation, a publicly-traded Software as a Service (SaaS) company. Prior to Mattersight, Ross served as Chief Financial Officer for EPAY Systems and Silver Chalice. Before that, Ross worked in various financial leadership positions for the Tribune Company, including Chief Financial Officer for WGN-TV, WGN Radio, CLTV, and WGN America. Ross also previously worked in the strategy, corporate development and corporate venture capital groups at Tribune Company. She started her career in investment banking at Credit Suisse Group.

Ross holds a Bachelor's degree in Economics from the University of Chicago and a Master of Business Administration from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management.

Sheau-ming resides in Evanston, Illinois with her husband Ian and three daughters.

Phil Zepeda, Director of Communications

Phil Zepeda

Phil Zepeda leads the team that manage all strategic communications for the Foundation as well as Cantigny Park and Cantigny Golf. With a deep background in marketing communications and public affairs, he’s held senior communications leadership roles at the national headquarters of Feeding America and the American Red Cross. He holds degrees from Northwestern University and Northern Illinois University, and serves on the Board of Directors of Amate House, the young adult volunteer program of the Archdiocese of Chicago.