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Veteran Orange County leaders to guide the third most active Grantmaker among all U.S. community foundations in 2022 and beyond.

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. (April 21, 2022) — Today, the Orange County Community Foundation (OCCF) announced the addition of Joanna Kong, Kristen Monson and Bob Whalen to its Board of Governors. These experienced Orange County business leaders and philanthropists are vital to OCCF’s mission and future vision, including a bold aim to reach $1 billion in cumulative granting by 2024, becoming one of only 35 community foundations in the U.S. to reach that milestone.

Kong, a former attorney at a large multinational law firm, currently serves as the executive director for the Sun Family Foundation, a private charitable foundation focused on advancing the educational opportunities and well-being of underserved populations in Orange County. She serves on several nonprofit boards including OC Grantmakers and co-founded and co-chairs the Board of Asian American Futures. Kong has previously been named to Orange County Business Journal’s OC 500 Most Influential in 2021 and Orange County Register’s 2021 125 Most Influential.

Currently serving on the Investment Committee for OCCF, Monson worked in institutional asset management for more than 31 years. She was executive vice president at Pacific Investment Management Company where she helped grow the firm from $11 billion to $2 trillion in assets under management. She now utilizes her passions in philanthropy to improve the lives of young people and animals through education and interaction. Monson is a UC Irvine Trustee and serves as a board member and is on the Investment Committee for the Beckman Foundation, which supports young researchers with funding for innovative and high-risk projects. Monson also is a board member for Orange County Animal Allies (formerly OCSPCA).

Whalen, a Laguna Beach resident for nearly 40 years, currently sits on Laguna Beach’s City Council and has served as Mayor for four terms. He became a member of the State Bar in 1978 and has been in private practice at Stranding Yocca Carlson & Rauth in Newport Beach for many years. Whalen is also an ambassador for education and served nearly a decade on the Laguna Beach Board of Education. He has also served as a board member for several nonprofit groups including the Laguna Beach Educational Foundation, Boys and Girls Club of Laguna Beach and Laguna Beach Little League. He served for over 25 years as a board member for Project Youth – OCBF based in Santa Ana and is now a member of the Emeritus Board.

“Thanks to the strategic guidance from our esteemed Board of Governors, OCCF has recently been named the third most active grant maker among more than 750 U.S. community foundations, and in the top 10 percent in assets,” said Shelley Hoss, president and CEO at the Orange County Community Foundation. “We look forward to Joanna, Kristen and Bob’s expertise and leadership in supporting OCCF’s continued growth and impact for the Orange County community we are honored to serve.”

OCCF is recognized as the center of gravity for Orange County philanthropy, acting as an unparalleled resource for local philanthropists and their families for more than 30 years by offering unique insights, deep knowledge, and a diverse array of tools to support both lifetime and legacy giving.  To learn more about the Orange County Community Foundation, visit

About Orange County Community Foundation

Founded in 1989, the Orange County Community Foundation (OCCF) works with donors, strengthens the local nonprofit sector and works to find solutions to community needs. Since its inception, OCCF has awarded more than $870 million in grants and scholarships, ranking the organization as the 3rd most active Grantmaker among all U.S. community foundations. For more information, visit or call 949-553-4202. Be a part of our conversation on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. View OCCF’s 2021 annual report here.

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Alex Torres
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