A note from Corporate Accountability Board Chair Akinbode Oluwafemi:
After an exceptional tenure as executive director, Patti Lynn will be moving into a new role at Corporate Accountability by the end of 2024. The board of directors is grateful for the ample time that Patti has provided to execute this transition—and we are thrilled that she will be staying on as an organizer and fundraiser.
It is yet another example of how Patti has led Corporate Accountability: with profound thoughtfulness and a commitment to the mission to challenge corporate power, putting the day-to-day organizing and its impact over ego or personal gain.
As executive director, Patti has built the organization’s capacity to be a powerful force for change. Through the tumultuous years of the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond, she’s led the organization in strengthening our financial position. She’s guided the work to advance racial equity and distribute leadership. And she’s steered us to mobilize power and resources behind the vision of Global South organizers challenging transnational corporations. Throughout it all, she has led Corporate Accountability to wage campaigns in ways that align with our values, operate in solidarity within a broader movement context, and have the maximum impact.
Under Patti’s exemplary leadership, Corporate Accountability underwent significant cultural and practical shifts. Today, our work and mission to end the life-threatening abuses of corporations and advance justice is stewarded by the whole organization, not just by a few leaders. We are a strong, stable, and evolving organization, able to meet the demands and opportunities that these times ask of us.
With all this in mind, the board is committed to a thoughtful, thorough, and transparent process—already under way—of finding the next executive leadership. The board has hired Strategies for Social Change to manage this process. We have great confidence in their experience, track record, and alignment with our organizational values.
As one of the first steps, we’ve formed a Leadership Transition Committee, co-chaired by Carolina Santamaria, director of recruitment, and Sarah Hodgdon, board member and partner at The Management Center. This team of staff and board represents rising leadership, a range of tenures with the organization, and Global South perspectives. They will lead the way in to identifying Corporate Accountability’s next leadership with ample input from staff and in conversation with members, donors, and allies. So please stay tuned for the announcement about the position, coming soon. I hope you will help spread the word and send potential candidates our way.
Over the coming months we will be celebrating and honoring Patti’s achievements and dedication to the work. As someone who has spent almost two decades organizing with Patti and leading the corporate accountability movement with her, I have witnessed the quiet and formidable force that she is. So I am happy that this will not be a goodbye; simply a shift. And, on behalf of the board of directors, I want to extend our deepest gratitude for her many contributions in this role, her dedication to the mission, and to the fierce fire she brings in challenging corporate power and advancing justice.
Corporate Accountability Board Chair
A note from Executive Director Patti Lynn:
With profound gratitude for this community, I am sharing the news that by the end of 2024 I will transition from the role of executive director at Corporate Accountability. But I won’t be leaving the organization; rather, I’m returning to do what I love most: organize and fundraise for Corporate Accountability.
By then, I will have been the executive director for seven years, and I’m confident this is the right time to initiate a new chapter for the organization and make space for new leadership.
It’s been an honor to shepherd the organization through transformative times. I’ve learned so much working with people across our community. Together, we’ve ensured the organization shows up in alignment with our values as we advance the work of corporate accountability and justice.
As I leave this role, Corporate Accountability is in a strong financial position. We are powered by thousands of people across the country who have helped us establish a stable financial reserve fund and an annual budget of more than $8 million. And our multi-racial, multicultural global team of staff and board is waging powerful campaigns to successfully challenge abusive corporations.
I’m particularly proud to have led Corporate Accountability in rallying resources behind the vision and campaigns of Global South organizers. We continue to find new and better ways to campaign as a global organization, including with our sister organization in Lagos, Nigeria, Corporate Accountability and Public Participation Africa (CAPPA). And, I’m inspired by how, during my tenure, Black staff developed the Black Collective to create space for Black leadership and challenge the systemic racism that fuels corporate power.
These are just two examples of how Corporate Accountability is a “leaderful” organization. Our culture encourages people to step into their power and lead from where they are. So I have full confidence in the success of the coming transition under the guidance of the board, the leadership transition committee, and our consultant, Strategies for Social Change.
My time in this role has only strengthened my belief in the power of organizing. I have witnessed how it is a powerful antidote to authoritarianism. I feel blessed to have been able to help build people-power, develop meaningful relationships, and seek and create opportunities for joy, connection, and resilience. This organization plays a critical role in creating the world we need, and we are ready to meet the challenges ahead.
As I think back on my time as executive director, I am most inspired by the people. I suppose that’s the organizer in me. In the end, Corporate Accountability is powerful because of those who make it up—the amazing staff, board, members, and organizers and activists we partner with. I’m grateful for each of you: smart, fierce, powerful people who have been my partners in this work, who challenge me, and who helped me become the leader that I am. And I know this community will help us find the next leadership to usher in a new phase of this work.
I have never been one to follow a linear path, nor has this organization. So it feels exactly right to be moving into a role where I can do even more direct organizing and fundraising to power our mission. Together, we are helping to build a world that is more just, one where all beings on this planet can flourish. I look forward to connecting with you again soon.