Debra Knopman (2013) became Co-Chair of the Board of Directors of the Henry Luce Foundation in 2022 along with fellow director Terry Adamson. Debra is currently an adjunct researcher at the RAND Corporation and a professor at the Pardee RAND Graduate School. She also serves on the Board of The Asia Foundation and is Vice Chair of the Council of the Austrian-based International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) and Chair of the US Committee for IIASA. She served as a Vice President of RAND and Director of RAND’s Justice, Infrastructure, and Environment Division from 2004 to 2014 and as a Principal Researcher from 2014 to 2022. Her expertise is in hydrology, environmental and natural resources policy, systems analysis, and public administration. Her project work spans a range of topics including adaptation of urban regions to a changing climate, long-term water management, capability development planning for the Air Force, policy options for disposition of nuclear waste, and the design of a National Research Fund for Qatar. She served for six years (1997–2003) as a member of the Nuclear Waste Technical Review Board (Presidential appointment) and chaired the board's Site Characterization Panel. She was the director of the Progressive Policy Institute's Center for Innovation and the Environment from 1995 to 2000. From 1993 to 1995, she served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Water and Science, U.S. Department of the Interior. She had previously been a Research Hydrologist at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and later chief of the Branch of Systems Analysis in the USGS's Water Resources Division. From 1979 to 1983, she served first as Legislative Assistant for energy and environmental issues to Senator Daniel P. Moynihan (NY) and then as Professional Staff Member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. In 1978–79, she spent the year in Taiwan as a Luce Scholar. She earned her Ph.D. in geography and environmental engineering from the Johns Hopkins University, her M.S. in Civil Engineering from MIT, and her B.A. in chemistry from Wellesley College.
Co-Chair of the Board (2022-present)