Cornelia Grumman
Director, Education Program


  • Early childhood and preschool

Cornelia Grumman is the education director at the Robert R. McCormick Foundation. She previously directed policy and strategic communications for the University of Chicago’s Urban Education Institute, and was the founding executive director of the First Five Years Fund, a national advocacy and communications organization focused on early childhood education. Grumman spent the first half of her career as a journalist. She was a member of the Chicago Tribune editorial board, where she won many awards, including the 2003 Pulitzer Prize for a series of editorials that led to reforms of Illinois’ criminal justice system, a 2001 Studs Terkel Award for coverage of disadvantaged communities, and 2006, 2005 and 2001 Casey Medals for Meritorious Journalism for her coverage of children and families. Grumman joined the Chicago Tribune in 1994 as a general assignment reporter. She also worked at the News & Observer in Raleigh, N.C. and the Daily Southtown in Chicago, and as a stringer in The Washington Post’s Beijing bureau. She has a master’s degree in public policy from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree in public policy from Duke University.