Bainum Family Foundation Appoints Brenda Henry, PhD, as Senior Director, Programs; Marica Cox Mitchell as Director, Early Learning

Bethesda, Maryland (June 13, 2019) — The Bainum Family Foundation has named Brenda Henry, PhD, as its Senior Director, Programs and Marica Cox Mitchell as its Director, Early Learning. Both roles will advance the Foundation’s efforts to improve the quality and availability of resources for children living in poverty.

Brenda Henry (left) and Marica Cox Mitchell

“We are excited to build the expertise of our team with these exceptional leaders,” says Barbara Bainum, CEO and President of the Bainum Family Foundation. “Both have dedicated their careers to the well-being of children, youth and families, and we know they will have a significant impact on our work and effectiveness.”

As Senior Director, Programs, Henry will oversee the Foundation’s array of program initiatives — including Early Learning, School Mental Health, Food Security and Seventh-day Adventist education — to ensure strategic alignment and impact.

Before joining the Foundation, Henry was Chief Operating Officer for the Division of Child and Family Well-Being at the New York City Administration for Children’s Services. The Division oversees the provision of $1 billion in child care and early childhood education for nearly 100,000 children and families eligible for Head Start and child care subsidy in New York City. In her role, Henry developed, coordinated and administered comprehensive performance improvement and capacity-building strategies. Previously, she was Director of Research for Special Projects at Candid (formerly known as Foundation Center) and Senior Program Officer, Research and Evaluation at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, where she helped launch the County Health Rankings and Roadmaps program.

Outside of work, Henry is an advisor to the WestEd Justice & Prevention Research Center, which works with partners to fund, implement and evaluate programs that promote positive youth development, physical health and well-being, and prevention of risk behaviors including violence.

Henry holds a Doctor of Philosophy in Health Behavior and Health Education and a Master of Public Health from the University of Michigan as well as a Bachelor of Science in Health Science from State University of New York College at Cortland.

As Director, Early Learning, Cox Mitchell will lead the Foundation’s efforts to build quality, comprehensive early childhood services in the District of Columbia and in other communities throughout the country.

Before joining the Foundation, Cox Mitchell worked for the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), where she most recently served as Deputy Executive Director, Early Learning Systems. In this role, she led a portfolio encompassing public policy and advocacy, accreditations of early learning programs, higher education accreditation and the Power to the Profession initiative. Prior to that, was Senior Director, NAEYC Accreditation for Higher Education Programs. She also worked for the District’s Office of the State Superintendent of Education from 2009 to 2012 — serving as Director, School Preparedness Division and Supervisor, Professional Development Unit. She began her career as a teacher — working in various early learning settings as well as with young children birth through age 8.

Cox Mitchell holds a Master of Science in Educational Administration from the University of Scranton as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education from the University of the District of Columbia.

The Bainum Family Foundation combines proven expertise with a passion for supporting the whole child by providing integrated services to help them thrive. Our circle of collaboration includes investments and support in Early Learning, Wrap-Around Support and Knowledge Building. Founded in 1968 by Stewart and Jane Bainum, the Foundation has helped underserved children exit poverty through high-quality educational programs and services for 50 years. For more information, visit



Ann Egan
Senior Director of Communications