Pahoua Yang Hoffman will join the Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundation as senior vice president of community impact. Credit: Photo courtesy of Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundation

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Pahoua Yang Hoffman, the current executive director of the Citizen’s League, is headed off to a new role at the state’s largest foundation. 

Next month, Hoffman will join the Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundation as senior vice president of community impact. (Disclosure: Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundation is a funder of Sahan Journal). 

She will be placed as chief strategist for grantmaking in an organization that last year alone awarded more than 8,500 grants worth $82 million to nonprofits and initiatives across the state. 

Hoffman, a known face in the state’s policy arena, was born in Laos and spent her first year in a refugee camp before immigrating to the U.S. with her parents. 

In a prepared statement, she said her new job will very much be a continuation of her work at the Citizens League, “supporting community members to be their own agents of change.” 

“I’m excited to join an organization with such a strong commitment to the idea that we best serve the community by listening and learning,” she said. “I look forward to leveraging my relationships with leaders and organizations in Saint Paul and across the state so that, together, we can create a Minnesota where people and communities thrive.”

At the Citizens League, a nonprofit focused on empowering ordinary people and promoting good governance, Hoffman led efforts to place students of color in government and policy internships, reforming the Met Council and raising the minimum wage in St. Paul. She was the first woman and person of color to lead the Citizens League in its 68-year history. 

In a web post about Hoffman’s departure, Citizens League Interim Board Chair Patrick Born wrote that the organization’s leaders and staffers are sad to see her go. 

“She has accomplished so much for the Citizens League,” he wrote. “Her intellect, poise, and leadership will be greatly missed.”

Eric. J. Jolly, CEO of Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundation, said Hoffman’s “bold guidance” will move the foundation’s community impact forward.

“She’s convened diverse groups of citizens to inform rich, community-led solutions,” Jolly said in a prepared statement. “In the advancement of equity, she’s worked tirelessly to cultivate a Minnesota where all voices are counted, heard and appreciated.”

Hoffman will start her new role on May 18. 

Joey Peters

Joey Peters is a reporter for Sahan Journal. His work has appeared in Reuters, Public Radio International, Columbia Journalism Review, KFAI Radio, the Pioneer Press, City Pages, MinnPost and more. He previously...