Older adult woman exchanges laugh with middle school child in classroom.


Improving the lives of children,
youth and older adults through intergenerational collaboration,
public policies, and programs.

Donna M. Butts
Donna Butts is Executive Director, Donna Buttsthe Executive Director of Generations United, a position she has held since 1997. For more than 30 years, Butts has worked tirelessly to promote the well-being of children, youth and older adults through nonprofit organizations across the country and around the world. She began her career in her home state of Oregon as a youth worker with the YWCA, where she worked one-on-one with teens and saw the positive effects of intergenerational programs firsthand.

Butts has held leadership positions with Covenant House, a New York-based international youth serving organization, and the National 4-H Council. She served as the Executive Director for the National Organization on Adolescent Pregnancy, Parenting and Prevention before taking the helm of Generations United.

An internationally sought-after speaker, author and advocate, Butts frequently speaks on intergenerational connections, grandparents raising grandchildren and policies effective across the lifespan. Her commentary has appeared in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Christian Science Monitor and the Wall Street Journal. She has been interviewed on the TODAY Show, National Public Radio and ABC News, and was invited by the United Nations to sit on three expert panels most recently on intergenerational dialogue in Doha, Qatar in 2011.

In 2004, Butts was honored with the National Council on Aging's Jack Ossofsky for Leadership, Creativity, and Innovation in Programs and Services for Older Persons. She served as a 2005 delegate to the White House Conference on Aging. A respected author, she has written countless articles, chapters and publications regarding the welfare of children, youth and older adults.

Butts received her undergraduate degree from Marylhurst College and is a graduate of Stanford University’s Executive Program for Nonprofit Leaders. She is a former chair of the board of the International Consortium of Intergenerational Programmes (ICIP) and serves on the board of the National Human Services Assembly. She was recognized by The Nonprofit Times as one of the Top 50 most powerful and influential nonprofit executives in the nation in 2012.
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