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Jonathan Lavine

Our national board of trustees is committed to building stronger communities by supporting local schools and helping our AmeriCorps members become civic leaders.

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Jonathan Lavine
Chair Emeritus, City Year, Inc. Co-Managing Partner, Bain Capital, LP

Jonathan Lavine is the co-managing partner of Bain Capital, LP. Mr. Lavine founded Bain Capital Credit, formerly known as Sankaty Advisors, in 1997. Bain Capital Credit has more than $40 billion in assets under management, and has more than 200 employees in offices across the U.S., the UK, Australia and China. Before joining Bain Capital, Mr. Lavine worked with McKinsey & Company and Drexel Burnham Lambert.

Mr. Lavine has served as chair of the City Year Board of Trustees since 2013. Together with his wife, Jeannie, he has partnered with City Year since 1991. In 2018, the Lavines committed $18 million to City Year to launch The City Year Campaign: Investing in Student Success initiative.
In addition to their commitment to City Year, the Lavines are active in a number of philanthropic and civic organizations. In 2007, they founded the Crimson Lion Foundation through which they provide support to nonprofits including uAspire, Opportunity Nation, the Anti Defamation League, Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Boston and American Jewish Service.

The Lavines have also endowed the Lavine Family Humanitarian Studies Initiative at the Harvard School of Public Health, and established the Lavine Family Cornerstone Scholarship Fund for Harvard undergraduates. In 2016, through the Crimson Lion Foundation, the Lavines made a $1 million donation to the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI), the largest in the organization’s history. The Lavines’ gift to EJI supports the organization’s work to combat wrongful convictions and excessive punishment of defendants and prisoners in the U.S. In 2019, the Lavines made a $15 million donation to create the Library of Congress Lavine/Ken Burns Prize, an award recognizing accomplishment in the production of historical documentaries.

Mr. Lavine serves as vice-chairman of the trustees of Columbia University and sits on the boards of Boston Children’s Hospital Trust, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Opportunity Nation. In 2016, President Obama named Mr. Lavine to the U.S Holocaust Memorial Council.
Mr. Lavine graduated from Columbia College, phi beta kappa and magna cum laude, and received his Master of Business Administration with distinction from Harvard Business School.

Jonathan Lavine highlights

Jonathan and Jeannie Lavine Committed to City Year

From their first gift of $18 to their most recent $18 million dollar commitment, each gift has been given with purpose and compassion, and at critical junctures in City Year’s impact and growth.

Jonathan and Jeannie Lavine Pledge $18 Million

An $18 million pledge from longtime City Year supporters Jonathan and Jeannie Lavine will enable City Year to catalyze the most recent phase of City Year’s Long-Term Impact strategy – a plan to ensure that more students are on track to graduate from high school and to position City Year to increase its impact, sustainability, scale and permanence.

The Lavines donate $15 million to create the Library of Congress Lavine/Ken Burns Award

Jonathan Lavine receives Anti-Defamation League Community Service Award

The Anti-Defamation League of New England honored Jonathan Lavine with the 2012 Distinguished Community Service Award for his “immense civic leadership and influence to affect positive change in our community.”

Jonathan Lavine supports ServiceNation through the National Service Alliance

In 2014, the National Service Alliance announced Service Year, a commitment to expanding national service. Jonathan Lavine is a Member of the Board at ServiceNation, a National Service Alliance member.

Jonathan Lavine was recognized with the Citizen Service Award by Voices for National Service.

In February of 2015, Voices for National Service recognized Jonathan Lavine for supporting the national service movement and first handedly participating in many service projects.

Jonathan Lavine profile

Adapted from the 2018 Annual Report

Jonathan and Jeannie Lavine have been involved with City Year for almost 30 years. The Lavines first got involved with City Year when they were students at Harvard Business School; the couple volunteered for a service day and donated $18. Jonathan Lavine is a long-time board member and has served as chair of the Board of Trustees since 2013.

The Lavines’ commitment has been essential to City Year’s growth over the past 28 years. From their first gift of $18 to their most recent $18 million dollar commitment, the Lavines have been an integral part of City Year’s success. When asked about the significance of the number 18, Jonathan Lavine said, “The symbolism of the number 18 comes from our Jewish faith—it represents the Hebrew letters for “chai,” which means”life” or ”luck.“ We hope that making this kind of an investment in City Year will inspire others, signaling how significant City Year is in changing the trajectory of lives of children in the United States, and how worthy it is of such a donation.”

Jonathan is the Managing Partner of Bain Capital Credit, Bain Capital’s leading global credit affiliate, and dedicates his time to a wide range of philanthropic causes with his wife, Jeannie. The Lavines are big believers in public school education and want to ensure that all students have an equal opportunity to succeed.

Jeannie and Jonathan Lavine continue to champion the City Year cause nearly three decades after their first service day. Jonathan says, “The unique thing about City Year is that it has identified a problem and has worked with educational institutions and other nonprofits to develop a model that has had and continues to have significant impact.”

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