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we raise funding to support organizations doing critical work in our focus areas and pursue select transformational opportunities at the national, state and local level.

Our Priorities

History + Values

founded in 2018, CGRE is a unique partnership between donors who care deeply about gender and reproductive equity.

We work creatively and collaboratively to try new approaches in response to the shifting needs of our most impacted communities.

Cgre values

We know that long-term change is only possible through committed intersectional collaboration. So we listen. We honor diverse perspectives. We cultivate relationships built on mutual trust and respect. And whatever challenges we face, we remain stubborn optimists.

Our Team


Margaret Hempel

she / her / hers

Executive Director

Margaret has the privilege of being the first Executive Director for CGRE. Prior to this she served nine years as the Director of Gender, Racial and Ethnic Justice at the Ford Foundation and, before that, was Vice President for Programs, American Jewish World Service and earlier, the Vice President for Programs at the Ms. Foundation for Women. Earlier in her career she helped design the Ford Foundation’s Reproductive Health program, worked at the Quaker United Nations Office and for Women of China Magazine based in Beijing, China. Margaret holds a M.A. from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton, a B.A. from Johns Hopkins University and is a Columbia Business School/Teachers College certified leadership coach. She is the proud mom of two, an avid reader, is dedicated to catching up on old TV series, takes pleasure in trying to grow things and deeply believes change is necessary and possible.

Esther Ademola

she / her / hers

Data + Operations Associate

Esther is the Data + Operations Associate for CGRE. She brings to The Collaborative an extensive history working with large volumes of data as well as a love of analysis and uncovering the stories that reveal themselves in data. Esther transitioned to CGRE from a career in the juvenile justice field where she developed her passion for the ways in which data and technology can be optimized to support work that improves outcomes for marginalized communities.

Esther attended Stony Brook University where she majored in Political Science with a minor in Women’s and Gender Studies. Outside of CGRE, Esther can be found deeply immersed in a novel, art house film or 1,000 piece puzzle, usually with her cat beside her.

Trishala Deb

she / her / hers

Director of National Programs

Trishala has been a social worker, community organizer, funder and advocate before joining CGRE. As the Director of National Programs, Trishala oversees implementation of the funding strategy with national organizations, and in support of the state based portfolio. Trishala spent the last 25 years with organizations such as the Audre Lorde Project, the Arcus Foundation, Caring Across Generations, and Thousand Currents.

Trishala is a graduate of the University of North Carolina - Greensboro, with a BSW and a minor in Religious Studies, in particular liberation theology. Her education has included work in movements for racial and economic justice, LGBTST liberation, immigrant rights, and ending state violence. She is currently serving on the boards of the Just Beginnings Collaborative and Resource Generation. As a former doula, she is also a student of healing justice movements. She is guided by dystopian science fiction, poetry and all things shark and cephalopod related.

Rachel Myers

she / her / hers

Grants + Data Manager

In her role as Grants + Data Manager, Rachel supports the CGRE team as a systems-thinker and data specialist, facilitating the grantmaking process and building and evolving infrastructure. Her career began at a small arts nonprofit, and moved through several operational positions into a leadership role where she ensured the organization's health and success with a specific focus on finance and development.

Rachel earned a B.A. in English Literature from SUNY Geneseo, and has continued her education through Columbia Business School’s Executive Education program, the Lilly School of Philanthropy, and the New School. She resides in upstate New York, where she spends her time gardening, cycling, and bothering an especially soft cat.

Ashley Suarez


Senior Philanthropy + Communications Specialist

Ashley comes to CGRE with a background in fundraising, philanthropy, and organizing. As the Senior Philanthropy + Communications Specialist, she supports current and prospective funder relations, communications, and advancement for the collaborative. Previously, Ashley worked closely with the Office of the President and other executive leadership to engage principal and major donors at Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA). While at PPFA, she also helped to successfully organize New York and San Francisco staff and served on the committee to bargain the union's first fair contract. Prior to that, Ashley worked at a private, place-based foundation in Arizona where she built relationships with local nonprofits and made grant recommendations to the foundation's trustees, including crafting a $1.5M utilities assistance grant that was approved.

A native of Phoenix, Ashley eventually discovered the existence of four seasons in Ohio where she graduated from Oberlin College with a B.A. in psychology. Besides making it through many snowy winters, she is most proud of co-organizing the first-ever Latinx living and learning space at the college. Nowadays, Ashley enjoys taking sunset beach walks with her retired greyhound, finding brittle stars at the tide pools, and playing old school PlayStation 1 video games.

Cristina Uribe

she / her / hers

Director of Advocacy + Judicial Strategies

Cristina is an experienced political strategist and social change advocate, who brings an expertise in advocacy, narrative strategy, and civic engagement to her role as CGRE’s Director of Advocacy + Judicial Strategies. In this role, she oversees the implementation of the state-judicial grantmaking strategy to advance gender equity in state courts. Cristina has spent the last two decades working to build a more reflective and expansive democracy with organizations such as Cultural Engagement Lab, Ballot Initiative Strategy Center, the National Education Association and EMILY’s List.

Cristina’s significant state-based and federal advocacy and campaign experience is fueled by her deep commitment to building lasting political power at the local level. She currently serves on the boards of Faith in Public Life Action and the Health Access Foundation. When not working, you are likely to find her reading poetry, binging the latest British procedural drama, chasing an elusive sub-2hr half-marathon, or cheering on her beloved Oakland A’s.

Rae Williams

she / her / hers

Operations Associate

Rae is the Operations Associate for CGRE. Prior to joining CGRE, she worked for Rutgers University as the Coordinator for the PAGE Study, a genetic study which explores the ways in which genetics and physical characteristics influence health outcomes. She holds a Master’s in Public Administration and a B.S. in Public Health from Rutgers University. Rae is a New Jersey native who, in her free time, volunteers for political campaigns, practises yoga, and of course, frequents the Jersey Shore.

Judy Wright

she / her / hers

Director of State Programs

Judy Wright’s work as the Director of State Programs with CGRE centers on building and implementing the Collaborative’s state-based grantmaking program. Before joining CGRE, Judy served as the founding director for the Ohio Transformation Fund, a collaborative fund advancing structural changes in Ohio's criminal justice system. Previously, Judy worked as a community organizer in Chicago and Ohio, and in program development for Planned Parenthood’s Ohio affiliates.

Judy graduated from Northwestern University with a B.S. cum laude in Education and Social Policy and earned a M.Ed. at Cleveland State University with a focus on women-led popular education. If you’re looking for her on the weekend, you’ll most likely find her wandering in the Ohio woods or snuggled up with a novel and a cat.

Jen Wylegala

she / her / hers

Chief Philanthropy + Communications Officer

Jen is an experienced philanthropic advisor, director and strategist with specialties in charitable and political giving. As CGRE's Chief Philanthropy + Communications Officer, Jen works closely with its Advisory Committee and cultivates relationships with prospective funder Partners and Supporting Partners. Before joining CGRE, Jen was a senior philanthropic advisor at Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) and the Planned Parenthood Action Fund (PPAF), working closely with the two organizations' most generous donors in the western United States. Previous to PPFA and PPAF, Jen served as the Strategic Growth Manager at Green For All, managing its individual donor program and a foundations and corporate sponsorship portfolio.

Jen holds a M.A. summa cum laude in Gender and Politics from New York University's Gallatin School of Individualized Study and a B.A. magna cum laude in Political Science and French from Loyola University Maryland. She also holds strong opinions about the best brand of cookies 'n cream ice cream, why Red Vines are better than Twizzlers, and the most motivating food to finish full and half-marathons (French toast. Always.)

Special Thanks to Consultants

BerlinRosen, Civitas Public Affairs, Grassroots Solutions, Marisha Wignaraja, Susan Bell and Associates, state advisors in Georgia, Michigan, New Mexico, and Texas, and many others who have made this work possible.

advisory committee

  • Ford logo
  • Packard foundation logo
  • Jbp logo
  • Schustermann logo
  • Acton family giving
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  • General Thanks