The DRI Foundation Welcomes New Trustees for 2023

The DRI Foundation is pleased to welcome the following new members to its Board of Trustees, each serving a four-year term beginning January 1, 2023:

These board members were formally approved at the December NSHE Board of Regents meeting and will serve alongside existing DRI Foundation board members Kristin McMillan Porter (Chair), Stephanie Kruse (Vice Chair), Michael Benjamin (Past Chair), Robert McCart (Treasurer), Nora James (Secretary), Richard Ditton, John Entsminger, Robert Gagosian, James King, Janet Lowe, Terry Shirey, Ronald Smith, and Karen Wayland.

The DRI Foundation Board of Trustees is comprised of dedicated individuals committed to helping advance DRI’s mission. In 2022, Foundation leadership invested heavily in cultivating a strong and diverse pool of trustee candidates who are well-positioned to make an impact. These efforts led to an increase in board diversity in areas such as gender, ethnicity, age, and geographic location. These individuals will work in close collaboration with President Kumud Acharya and the Office of Advancement to engage and build relationships with new and existing supporters to further DRI’s work across Nevada and around the world.

“We welcome our new trustees to the DRI Foundation Board and extend our deepest thanks and appreciation to our outstanding current trustees,” said DRI President Dr. Kumud Acharya. “The expertise and commitment to philanthropy of the DRI Foundation Trustees play an essential role in building and maintaining relationships that are crucial to funding and promoting the impactful environmental work of DRI research to people and environments in Nevada and around the world.”

“I am honored to lead the DRI Foundation Board of Trustees in supporting DRI’s mission to be a home for science that creates a better future,” said DRI Foundation Chair Kristin McMillan Porter. “We welcome our new Trustees and look forward to the great value that they will bring to our organization.”


DRI Foundation Chair Kristin McMillan Porter

Headshot of DRI Foundation Chair Kristin McMillan Porter


About the DRI Foundation

The DRI Foundation serves to cultivate private philanthropic giving in support of the mission and vision of the Desert Research Institute. Since 1982, DRI Foundation trustees have worked with DRI benefactors to support applied environmental research to maximize the Institute’s impact on improving people’s lives throughout Nevada, the nation, and the world. For more information about the DRI Foundation or DRI, please contact Kristin Burgarello ( or Julie Mathews (

About DRI

The Desert Research Institute (DRI) is a recognized world leader in basic and applied environmental research. Committed to scientific excellence and integrity, DRI faculty, students who work alongside them, and staff have developed scientific knowledge and innovative technologies in research projects around the globe. Since 1959, DRI’s research has advanced scientific knowledge on topics ranging from humans’ impact on the environment to the environment’s impact on humans. DRI’s impactful science and inspiring solutions support Nevada’s diverse economy, provide science-based educational opportunities, and inform policymakers, business leaders, and community members. With campuses in Las Vegas and Reno, DRI serves as the non-profit research arm of the Nevada System of Higher Education. For more information, please visit

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Philanthropy is a multigenerational Lewis family tradition. During his childhood, Robert Lewis wanted to be a scientist. He has supported DRI for almost 15 years and was part of an instrumental group of donors that provided philanthropic support to launch the Innovative Research Program (IRP) in 2018.

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