Mercy Corps Welcomes New Board Chair, Board Director

02 July 2024

The global humanitarian organization Mercy Corps is pleased to welcome a new Board Director and appoint a new Board Chair. Mercy Corps’ Board of Directors ensures the nonprofit organization adheres to its charitable purposes and mission, guides major strategic decisions and policies, and provides accountability and proper management.

“We’re thrilled to welcome Linda McAvan to our Board of Directors and to appoint Vijaya Gadde, who has been on the Board since 2018, as our new Board Chair. As we confront major conflict and climate-driven crises, from famine conditions in Sudan and Gaza to a growing global displacement crisis, our Board leadership offers critical guidance and counsel to ensure we maximize our global impact,” says Tjada D’Oyen McKenna, Chief Executive Officer of Mercy Corps. “We are deeply grateful for outgoing Board Chair Lucy Helm’s steadfast leadership and guidance over 11 years.” 

Linda McAvan joins the Board with over 20 years of experience in European Union policy making, including overseeing EU humanitarian aid and overseas development policy as Chair of the European Parliament Development Committee. She has deep climate policy expertise and experience advancing climate action after serving as Executive Director for European Relations at the European Climate Foundation. Linda is an Alumna of Heriot Watt University and Universite Libre de Bruxelles, where she received her MA in International Relations. 

Vijaya Gadde, who has been on the Mercy Corps Board of Directors since 2018, assumes her new role as Chair in July. Vijaya is the former chief legal officer at Twitter and currently serves on the Board of Directors of Planet Labs PBC and Guardant Health, Inc. Prior to Twitter, she was an attorney at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati for nearly a decade. She holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial and labor relations from Cornell University and a J.D. from New York University School of Law. 

Vijaya succeeds longtime Board Chair Lucy Helm, who will step down from the Mercy Corps Board of Directors after serving since 2015. 

You can read more about all of our Board Directors here on our website.