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President's Council

President's Council


Honorary Chairs of The President's Council                       

Lord Amir Bhatia

After leaving India, Lord Bhatia joined his family business in Tanzania. He administered some 55 Kindergarten and technical schools, and managed a large scholarship program that enabled students to receive a university education in Europe, U.S.A., Canada and other parts of the world. After arriving in the UK in 1972 (where he lives now) he built a successful business and has become an outstanding leader and champion of social and charitable causes in the UK. As an Ismaili Muslim, Lord Bhatia has been involved in a wide range of initiatives focused on ethnic minorities. He is on the Board of the Queens Awards for Enterprise Advisory Committee, the Diana Princess of Wales Memorial Fund, St. Christopher Hospice, Project Fullemploy, Overseas Students Hostels, Water Aid Project and many more. He was awarded the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 1977 and was amongst the 15 peers appointed from 3000 nominations to the House of Lords in 2001.

William K. Bowes, Jr.

Mr. William K. Bowes has had three careers – each somehow leading to the next.  After twenty-five years of investment banking in San Francisco, he founded U.S. Venture Partners in 1981, providing him with the opportunity to help create initiatives at their earliest stage. “Venture Philanthropy” followed naturally and has included “Start-ups”; financing initiatives inside established institutions; larger “transformative” investments in institutions. The following Board and Advisory Council assignments are indicative of areas of interest: the University of California San Francisco Foundation, Exploratorium, Grace Cathedral, Environmental Defense Fund, Stanford’s Bio-X, Asian Art Museum, QB3, Institute for Systems Biology, San Francisco Jazz, Xoma Corporation, Creative Capital, Harvard Business School Visiting Committee, San Francisco Conservatory of Music.

The Hon. George P. Shultz

The Honorable George P. Shultz has had a distinguished career in government service, the private sector and academia. He served as Secretary of State and Chairman of the President's Economic Policy Advisory Board during the Reagan Administration. During the Nixon Administration he served as Secretary of Labor, Director of the Office of Management and Budget, Secretary of the Treasury, and Chairman of the Council on Economic Policy. He was also a Senior Staff Economist on the President's Council of Economic Advisors during the Eisenhower Administration. He has also played a leading role at a number of universities. Secretary Shultz was awarded the Medal of Freedom in 1989. He also received the Seoul Peace Prize, the Eisenhower Medal for Leadership and Service, and the Reagan Distinguished American Award. He rejoined Stanford University in 1989 to teach international economics. He is currently the Thomas W. and Susan B. Ford Distinguished Fellow at the Hoover Institution.

Dame Charlotte Mailliard Shultz

Dame Shultz has served seven San Francisco Mayors as Chief of Protocol and Director of Special Events for the City and County of San Francisco. During her tenure, she was responsible for receiving and entertaining many world leaders, including the Pope, Queen Elizabeth, Mikhail Gorbachev and Francois Mitterand. Shultz is a member of many civic boards such as the War Memorial Performing Arts Center, the San Francisco Symphony, Grace Cathedral, the Commonwealth Club of California, and the San Francisco Ballet. She has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the State of California Woman of the Year Award, the United Nations Association of San Francisco's Eleanor Roosevelt Humanitarian Award for Lifetime Achievement and the Commonwealth Club of California's Distinguished Citizen Award. She is married to former Secretary of State, George P. Shultz.


The President's Council


The Rt. Rev. William E. Swing, President

Bishop William Swing is the President and Founder of the URI. Bishop Swing had the original vision of URI in 1993 in response to an invitation from the United Nations that asked him to host an interfaith service honoring the 50th anniversary of the signing of the UN Charter. Bishop Swing served as the Episcopal Bishop of California from 1980 until his retirement in 2006. In that capacity, he was a national and international leader in response to the AIDS crisis, co-founded Episcopal Community Services to address San Francisco’s homeless problem, and co-founded Community Bank of the Bay to support local businesses and the economy.

The Rev. Victor H. Kazanjian, Jr., Executive Director

Victor Kazanjian comes to URI as a lifelong peacebuilder dedicated to interfaith and intercultural understanding. His work at Wellesley College is widely acknowledged as the catalyst in the national and international movement to include religious diversity and spirituality as core issues in higher education. Specializing in inter-religious dialogue and conflict transformation, diversity and democracy, and peace building, Victor is a recognized thought-leader, the co-author and editor of several books and numerous articles and a frequent lecturer worldwide. 

John Weiser, Chairperson

John Weiser served as a partner in the New York law firm of Shearman & Sterling. He joined Bechtel Group in 1980 as General Counsel and Director. After retiring in 1996, he became a trustee of the Graduate Theological Union and served as Chairman of the Board for eight years. He was also a director of XL Capital Ltd for 20 years, serving there as Chairman of the Governance Committee and Chairman of the Compensation Committee. He currently serves as a trustee of the S.D. Bechtel Jr. Foundation.  John and his wife Maria have eight children and eleven grandchildren.

Wade M. Aubry, M.D.

Wade Aubry is a San Francisco physician who has had a career as a clinician, administrator, health policy researcher, and health care consultant.  He is a member of the core faculty of the Philip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies at the University of California, San Francisco, a former chief medical officer for Blue Shield of California, and a former chief of staff for Saint Francis Memorial Hospital in San Francisco.  Dr. Aubry has served on numerous national health care advisory panels and has international health care experience.  He is a graduate of Stanford University and the University of California, Los Angeles School of Medicine, and he has been a supporter and volunteer in varying capacities in the Episcopal Diocese of California over the last two decades, including service on the Board of Trustees of Grace Cathedral during the United Nations 50th Interfaith Service at Grace Cathedral in 1995, which provided a spark for the creation of URI.

Jonathan Burgstone

Mr. Burgstone is Managing Director of Symbol Capital, a San Francisco-based hedge fund, where he leads the firm's activities in portfolio management and research. He also serves as Faculty Chair and Adjunct Professor of the Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology at the University of California, Berkeley. Earlier in his career he was co-founder and CEO of SupplierMarket, then served as Vice President and co-head of corporate development in Ariba. Jonathan has also worked as a high-tech strategy consultant and in general management for Ford Motor Company. He is a trustee of the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, and serves on boards of the Rock Center for Entrepreneurship at Harvard Business School and the University of Illinois College of Engineering. Mr. Burgstone actively supports organizations working to improve education and to promote human rights. For more information: http://www.burgstone.com/

Peter Carpenter

Peter Carpenter is a strategist, synthesizer, businessman and non-profit leader. He is the Founder of the Mission and Values Institute and has served in the federal government (Office of the Secretary of Defense, White House, Office of Management and Budget, and the US Price Commission), local government (Palo Alto Planning Commissioner and Director, Menlo Park Fire Protection District), academia (Executive Director Stanford University Medical Center and McGill University) and the private sector (Executive Vice President ALZA Corporation). He has also served on numerous non-profit boards including Annual Reviews, the San Francisco Opera, InSTEDD, the Village Enterprise Fund, US International University – Kenya, and the Alan Guttmacher Institute.

Julia L. Davidson

Julia Davidson previously practiced corporate securities law as a partner at Cooley Godward LLP.  She serves on the board of trustees of Crystal Springs Uplands School and the board of directors of the Hillsborough Schools Foundation, where she is past president, and previously served as a director and board president of Episcopal Charities. Ms. Davidson and her husband are also involved with a variety of other social welfare, arts and education organizations.    She is a graduate of the University of California, Davis, and Harvard Law School.  

Sarah Frietag


William P. Fuller

William P. Fuller served as President and CEO of The Asia Foundation from 1989 until 2004 and is currently President Emeritus. From 2004 to 2008 he was Vice Chairman of ChinaVest, a merchant bank with offices in Shanghai, Beijing and San Francisco. Mr. Fuller was Deputy Assistant Administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) in Washington, D.C. from 1987 to 1989. He joined USAID in 1981 as Director of the USAID mission in Indonesia. From 1971 to 1981, Mr. Fuller served with the Ford Foundation in Thailand, and later as head of the Foundation’s office in Bangladesh. He worked with the World Bank in Paris, and with UNICEF in Beirut, Cairo, and New York. Mr. Fuller is on the board of the Bank of the Orient in San Francisco, Give2Asia, the World Affairs Council, the Japan Society, and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He is a two-time recipient of the United States President’s Meritorious Service Award and USAID’s Distinguished Honor Prize.

Margaret G. Gill

Margaret has been Chair and President of the Stephen and Margaret Gill Family Foundation since 1999. She was the Senior Vice President of Legal, External Affairs & Secretary from 1994 to 1999 with Air Touch Communications. Prior to this she was Associate of Pillsbury Madison & Sutro from 1966 to 1972, and Partner from 1973 to 1993. She was the Practice Group Manager and Senior Partner, Corporate and Securities Group (46 attorneys in 6 offices) from 1983 to 1993. She is on the Board of Directors/Trustee for Con-Way, Inc., Episcopal Church in the Diocese of California (President through 2008), the San Francisco Ballet (Vice Chair, Chair of the Governance Committee, Chair of the 75th Anniversary Celebrations), and Episcopal Charities (President 2001-2006). She is a member of the International Women's Forum and Women's Forum West, and the Wellesley College Capital Campaign Class Committee in California.

Asma Gull Hasan

Asma Gull Hasan is an accomplished legal professional currently serving as Executive Vice President and Chief Legal Officer of Health Trio, LLC in Denver, CO.  She is the author of Why I Am a Muslim (Harper Collins Thorsons/Element, 2004) and American Muslims: The New Generation (Continuum 2000).  She calls herself a “Muslim Feminist Cowgirl,” reflecting her youth in Colorado.  She is the daughter of Pakistani immigrants and born in Chicago.

Hasan graduated from the New York University School of Law in May 2001. She is also a 1997 graduate of Wellesley College (Magna Cum Laude) and a Durant Scholar. Hasan is a 1993 graduate of the Groton School (Magna Cum Laude).

William Jamieson

Bill Jamieson’s career has included leadership positions in business, government, religion and education. He currently serves as president of the Micah Institute in Asheville, North Carolina.  Bill was ordained a deacon in the Episcopal Church in 1989, and his ministry has centered around advocacy for low-income families and children.

Bill has taught master-degree level courses in leadership and management at the School of Theology at Claremont, California and several universities. He was a founding board member of ASU’s Morrison Institute for Public Policy.

Bill served in two cabinet-level appointments in Arizona Governor Bruce Babbitt’s administration and as chair of the Governor’s cabinet.  Prior to that, he worked in Governor Jimmy Carter’s administration in Georgia, and with the Carter administration in Washington, D.C.

He left government in 1984 to form a public affairs and management consulting firm in Phoenix.  Bill was also the majority owner of two other businesses, E&J Travel at Travis Air Force Base in California, and Travis Express, an airport-connector bus company in Northern California.

Rupert H. Johnson Jr.

Rupert Johnson earned a Bachelor of Arts / Science from Washington and Lee University, and then served as a Marine. He next took over his father’s business, Franklin Templeton, with his half brother, Charles.  Johnson is on the board of trustees at Santa Clara University, and has made charitable contributions to the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco and the Delaware Art Museum.

Jill H. Kramer

Jill Kramer is President & CEO of the Kramer Family Foundation; a Director of the Institute for Myeloma and Bone Cancer Research in Los Angeles; a Trustee of Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, and a founder of CLAW, a group dedicated to raising public awareness and support for the San Francisco Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. She has been a member of Achievement Rewards for College Scientists (ARCS) Foundation since 1977, and has served in many capacities on the National and Northern California Chapter Boards. Focusing on non-profit organizational development, her other projects have included a pilot program on career development with the Junior League of San Francisco and the San Francisco Community College, as well as the development of Coro Foundation’s pilot project for women over 40. A native of Southern California, Mrs. Kramer lives in San Francisco and the Napa Valley.

Bob Lurie

Bob Lurie has a lifelong dedication to business, civic and community affairs in San Francisco. He served as a lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force from 1951 to 1953 before returning home to enter the San Francisco business community. Upon his father’s passing in 1972, Bob Lurie assumed the presidency of the Lurie Company, a San Francisco and Chicago-based real estate company specializing in commercial properties. In 1976, a Lurie Company subsidiary purchased interest in the San Francisco Giants Baseball Club. Under Lurie, the team won the National League Western Division title in 1987 and the National League Championship in 1989. The team was sold to a group of local investors in 1993. Lurie is a vigorous participant in a host of local civic and charitable activities. In addition to his duties with The Lurie Company, he serves as President of the Louis R. Lurie Foundation. Bob is married to Connie, who is active in a wide variety of civic, social and charitable endeavors.

Connie Lurie


George Marcus

George Marcus is the founder of Marcus & Millichap Company and has been its Chairman since 1971. Mr. Marcus is also Chairman of Essex Property Trust (NYSE: ESS), a publicly held multi-family real estate investment trust. He was an original founder and director of Plaza Commerce Bank and Greater Bay Bancorp, both publicly held financial institutions. He continues to serve as a director of Greater Bay Bancorp and the Apartment Industry Foundation. Included among his professional memberships are the Real Estate Roundtable and the Policy Advisory Board of U.C. Berkeley Center for Real Estate and Urban Economics. Mr. Marcus graduated with a B.S. degree in Economics from San Francisco State University and was honored as Alumnus of the Century in 1999. He is also a graduate of the Harvard Business School Owners/Presidents Management Program and the Georgetown University Leadership Program.

Lisa Meaney


Richard Morrison

Richard Morrison has practiced law in Arizona since 1978, with emphasis on water law and environmental law.  Additionally, he has garnered valuable business experience through his family’s agribusiness holdings.  He served as CEO of the Arizona Dairy Co., LLP during a time of transition following his father’s death, and he is currently the Managing Member of Morrison Brothers Windmill Ranch, LLC, a beef cattle breeding operation situated in Yavapai and Coconino counties.  In academe, Mr. Morrison has been a university trustee of three graduate schools, fundraiser, administrator, and faculty member.

At present, Mr. Morrison is serving as a newly elected trustee of the Church Divinity School of the Pacific in Berkeley, California, and as a member of the External Advisory Board to the Water Resources Research Center at the University of Arizona.   His  service to the broader agricultural industry is chiefly through the Farm Foundation, in Chicago, Illinois, as to which he is a trustee. 

Mr. Morrison has a strong commitment to community service, evidenced in part by his having been awarded the Doctor of Humane Letters honorary degree by the University of Arizona in 2011 and Arizona State University’s Distinguished Achievement Award (College of Arts and Sciences) in 1989. He has been appointed and elected to numerous commissions and boards in Arizona, is a decorated veteran (U.S. Navy fighter pilot), and is also an ordained priest of The Episcopal Church.  (He served as the Rector of the Episcopal Church of the Epiphany in Flagstaff, Arizona from 2003-2005.)  

Robert A. Oden Jr.

Robert A. Oden Jr. is the past president of Carleton College, an independent non-sectarian, coeducational, liberal arts college in Northfield, Minnesota, USA. He began his tenure on July 1, 2002 and retired in June 2010, which marks the end of Carleton's current academic year. Oden was born in Vermillion, South Dakota. He graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Harvard University. He then earned a second bachelor's degree and a master's from Cambridge University (where he was a Marshall Scholar) and a master's in theology and a Ph.D. in near Eastern languages and literatures from Harvard. He served on the faculty of Dartmouth College as a professor of religion from 1972 to 1989, where he was the first recipient of Dartmouth's Distinguished Teaching Prize. Oden then served in administrative positions, first as headmaster of The Hotchkiss School in Lakeville, Connecticut from 1989 to 1995, and afterwards as president of Kenyon College from 1995 to 2002, when he accepted the presidency at Carleton College. He also currently holds a faculty appointment in the religion department at Carleton, and regularly teaches a fly-fishing course at the college.

Rabbi Stephen Pearce

Stephen S. Pearce, DD, PhD, served Congregation Emanu-El as the Richard and Rhoda Goldman Senior Rabbi from 1993 to 2013. Ordained at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, he earned his doctorate in counselor psychology at St. John’s University. He is a board member of Palo Alto University and an advisory board member of the Taube Foundation for Jewish Life and Culture. Previously, he served on the board of the Graduate Theological Union and is a past president of the Northern California Board of Rabbis. Rabbi Pearce currently serves Congregation Emanu-El as Senior Rabbi Emeritus.

In 2012, Rabbi Pearce was awarded The San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association’s Silver Spur Award for interfaith community dialogue and engagement; the national Jefferson Award for inspiring worshippers to fight hunger; The San Francisco Food Bank Community Partner Award for inspiring members of Congregation Emanu-El to donate over 90,000 pounds of food in the last two decades; and the San Francisco Interfaith Council recognition for encouraging green sustainability at the Temple. Dr. Pearce has been recognized three successive times by Newsweek as one of the 50 Most Influential Rabbis in the United States.

Sabahat Rafiq

Sabahat Rafiq started her career as a consultant and coordinator for USAID and Arthur D. Little. She subsequently joined an international Islamic banking group and spent the next few years focusing on Sharia compliant Investment Banking. Upon coming to the US in 1995, she founded a successful textile-trading house in Oregon. She later moved to California, and re-focused her energies on her core expertise in the Finance industry. She is a consultant to reputable Middle-Eastern financial institutions and Pakistani Islamic banks. She also consults with local venture capitalists educating them about Islamic banking and assisting them in building bridges between the US and the Middle Eastern financial markets. In addition, she has an avid interest in history, politics and philosophy and is a consummate reader and enthused analyst. She delivers talks about Islamic finance, South-Asian affairs and history and philosophical discourse therein at various universities and forums. She has also recently joined the board of Islamic Network Groups (ING).

Roselyne C. Swig

Ms. Swig is Founder & President of ComCon International, and member of the Board of Directors of The Swig Company and founder of Roselyne C. Swig Artsource (1978-94). She was appointed Director of the U.S. Department of State Art in Embassies Program by President William J. Clinton (1994-97). She has devoted decades to philanthropic and community service efforts, at local, national and global level with focus on women empowerment, social welfare, fine art, political advocacy and education. Ms. Swig is founder of Partners Ending Domestic Abuse. Additional board memberships include Vital Voices Global Partnership; NCPB/KQED; National Public Radio Foundation; Mills College; SF Art Institute; Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archives; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; The Contemporary Jewish Museum, past-president; AIPAC; American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee. Ms. Swig is the widow of Richard Lewis Swig and has four children and twelve grandchildren.

Chandler (Chan) Tagliabue

Chan grew up in Milledgeville, GA, with two younger brothers.  She was an outstanding student and received her BA in English and French from the Women’s College of Georgia in 1964.  In 1965, Chan married Paul Tagliabue, then fresh out of law school.  She later earned a masters degree in English and American Literature at George Washington University.  In the mid-1970’s, Chan and Paul and their children met Bill Swing when he was the rector of St. Columba’s Episcopal Church in Washington, DC, and they soon became strong collaborators with Bill and good friends of both Mary and Bill.

For many years, Chan devoted time and energy as a volunteer leader and board member of Rebuilding Together, the nation’s leading not-for-profit organization engaged in rehabilitating housing for elderly, disabled and other disadvantaged citizens.  Chan has also been heavily involved in other organizations, including as a board member for Planned Parenthood of Metropolitan Washington; honorary chair of a capital campaign for the Girl Scout Council of the National Capital; and as senior warden of the vestry and chair of a St Columba’s capital campaign.  Chan and Paul have in recent years traveled extensively in Europe, Asia, the Mid-East and elsewhere, and have engaged in business, higher education and public policy discussions in Europe and Asia, including in Australia, Bhutan, China, India, Japan and Singapore.   

Kat Taylor

Kat is active in a variety of social business, public benefit and philanthropic ventures in the San Francisco Bay Area. She currently focuses on beneficial banking services and food systems through two primary organizations. She and her husband, Tom Steyer, are the Founding Directors of OneCalifornia Bank and a Foundation, which lends to low-income communities to support local economies and job creation. Kat is also a Founding Director of TomKat Ranch Educational Foundation dedicated to returning to sustainable food production. Kat is a Partner in INKA, a startup renewable food company pioneering closed loop food systems. Since 1986, Kat served on the board of the Good Samaritan Family Resource Center and the Insight Prison Project. Kat has also served as a member of the Board of Directors of KQED, Inc., the Bay Area and Northern California’s public radio and television station. Kat and Tom reside in San Francisco with their four children and many animals.