Francisco Borges elected as Knight Foundation’s next board chair

MIAMI — Sept. 10, 2019 – The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation Board of Trustees have unanimously elected Francisco L. Borges, an investment manager, two-time Connecticut state treasurer, and former Hartford deputy mayor, as the foundation’s next board chair. 

Francisco L. Borges (pictured)Borges will assume the post in December, succeeding John Palfrey, who became president of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation on Sept. 1. Palfrey will remain on Knight’s board, where he is up for re-election in March.

“Knight is helping communities across the United States shape their own futures by supporting innovative ideas for public spaces, the arts and local journalism,” Borges said. “Ever since I was a deputy mayor, I’ve seen that the local level is where real change happens. I am proud to be part of a foundation that supports people who are making positive change in their communities.” 

Borges has headed Knight’s program committee since 2013. During his tenure, Knight has committed $300 million to the future of local news, funded the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University, and created one of the largest place-based arts programs in America.

“Frank Borges is a visionary, disciplined leader with great generosity of spirit who will help Knight Foundation to thrive,” Palfrey said. “His leadership will assure Knight’s ambitious goals are grounded in the rigor that produces real impact.”

Borges is chairman and managing partner of Landmark Partners, an institutional investment firm. Borges was twice elected Connecticut state treasurer and also served as deputy mayor of the city of Hartford and legal counsel for The Travelers Insurance Company.

Borges chairs the board of directors of Assured Guaranty Ltd., and serves on several boards of trustees, including the Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network. He received a B.A. from Trinity College and a J.D. from the University of Connecticut School of Law. 

“All of us on the staff of Knight Foundation look forward to working with Frank Borges,” said Alberto Ibargüen, Knight Foundation president. “He understands how cities and public-private partnerships work, and has an unwavering belief that people in communities can best determine their own futures. Combined with his deep financial expertise he is the ideal choice to lead the Knight board.”

Borges is a member of the Knight board’s audit and investment committees. His expertise and leadership have been instrumental in adding women- and minority-owned companies to manage Knight’s $2.3 billion investment portfolio, in an effort to diversify the asset management industry. Diverse-owned firms currently manage more than one-third of Knight’s endowment.

Knight’s trustees unanimously elected Borges during their quarterly board meeting, in St. Paul, Minn., one of eight cities where the foundation has offices. It is headquartered in Miami.

About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
Knight Foundation is a national foundation with strong local roots. We invest in journalism, in the arts, and in the success of cities where brothers John S. and James L. Knight once published newspapers. Our goal is to foster informed and engaged communities, which we believe are essential for a healthy democracy. For more, visit

Contact: Roshni Neslage, Communications Officer, John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, 305.908.2623,[email protected]