May 21, 2015

EDC Appoints David Offensend as New President and CEO

WALTHAM, MA |The EDC board of trustees has selected David Offensend, former chief operating officer of the New York Public Library, as the next president and chief executive officer of EDC. Offensend was selected following a months-long international search process that considered 22 highly qualified candidates. He will take office in early September.

“We are delighted to welcome Dave Offensend to EDC,” said Marvin Suomi, chair of EDC’s board of trustees. “After a thorough search that included all levels of EDC, we have found an individual with the blend of skills and experience to lead this exceptional organization. We are excited he has agreed to join EDC to build on our tradition of combining rigorous research with practical application and help us write our next chapter.”

Offensend, 61, served for 10 years as the COO at the New York Public Library, the nation’s largest public library system, with 90 branch libraries, 2,000 employees, and an annual budget of $270 million. During his tenure, Offensend increased circulation by 70 percent and education programs by 30 percent. He is credited with digitizing the library system and extending the reach and quality of both its research and education programs.

Most recently, Offensend served as COO for America Achieves, a nonprofit organization that helps communities and states build high-quality educational systems and prepare young people for college and careers. In this role, he had responsibility for supporting all of America Achieves’ program initiatives.

Before moving to the nonprofit sector, Offensend had a successful career in the financial sector. In 1995, he co-founded the independent investment banking advisory firm Evercore Partners, and prior to that, he worked in the investment organization of Robert M. Bass, and also at Lehman Brothers, where he served as president and CEO of Lehman Brothers Merchant Banking Partnership.

Offensend has served on multiple boards, including Princeton University, Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation, and Brooklyn Bridge Park Corporation, and he is a trustee emeritus of the Brooklyn Children’s Museum.

Offensend holds a bachelor of arts degree in public and international affairs from Princeton University and an master’s degree in business administration from the Harvard Business School, where he was a Baker Scholar.

“I am honored to be EDC’s next president and CEO” said Offensend. “EDC has a truly inspiring mission and a strong reputation for creating innovative programs to improve education, health and economic opportunity worldwide. I am excited to work with EDC’s extraordinary staff to expand the reach and impact of EDC’s work around the globe.”

Offensend succeeds Luther S. Luedtke, who became president in 2006 and stepped down in February of this year. Luedtke is credited with relocating EDC from its longtime home in Newton, Massachusetts, to its new world headquarters in Waltham. During Luedtke’s tenure, EDC also expanded to the Midwest, opening a fourth corporate office in Chicago. EDC’s other offices are in Washington, D.C., and New York.

Established in 1958, EDC has grown to include 1,350 employees, with more than 250 health, education, and international development projects in all 50 states and in 30 countries.

EDC designs, implements, and evaluates programs to improve education, health, and economic opportunity worldwide. Visit