CLEVELAND — A valued member of the WKYC Studios team is joining of the region's most prestigious philanthropy organizations.

Margaret Bernstein, our director of advocacy and community initiatives, has been selected as one of two Cleveland trustees for The George Gund Foundation. She and Case Western Reserve professor Mark Joseph will be the only two trustees who are not members of the Gund family, and are each eligible to serve two consecutive three-year terms.

Founded in 1952 by noted Cleveland businessman George Gund II, the foundation has issued more than $700 million in grants for projects it believes will contribute "to human well-being and the progress of society." Gund's family followed him both into business and charity, and sons Gordon and George III even led the purchasing of the Cavaliers in 1983 that essentially saved the team from bankruptcy.

Board President Catherine Gund, an award-winning filmmaker and George II's granddaughter, said:

"Our Cleveland Trustees are such an important part of the Foundation. The family no longer lives there and we value our Cleveland colleagues for their insights into local needs and opportunities. We’re very excited to have Margaret bring her knowledge and dedication to our board discussions."

A native of Los Angeles, Margaret worked as an accomplished reporter, editor, and columnist at The Plain Dealer for 24 years before joining WKYC Studios in 2014. During her time here, she has spearheaded projects like the Emmy Award-winning #WeReadHere literacy campaign and our continuing partnership with the LeBron James Family Foundation.

LeBron James Foundation visits WKYC studios
WKYC's Margaret Bernstein chatting with the students
Photographer: Matt Frieden

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Bernstein, known for her passion around the topic of literacy, also serves on the board of Little Free Library, headquartered in Hudson, Wisc.

"I’m a person who looks for hope and solutions so I’ve long been aware of the Gund Foundation’s outstanding work, particularly in the education arena," Bernstein said. "I’m looking forward to learning from this team and sharing my expertise."

While the Gund family no longer resides in Northeast Ohio, the foundation's headquarters remain at Tower City Center.