Press release

Freedom House Welcomes Three New Trustees

The nation’s longest-operating international prodemocracy organization has welcomed new members to its Board of Trustees.

“I am excited to welcome three new members to the Freedom House Board of Trustees, whose extensive experience across the private, public, and nonprofit sectors, commitment to public service and civic engagement, and diverse perspectives on public policy and international relations will provide critical support to the mission of Freedom House,” said Michael Chertoff, chairman of the Board of Freedom House and former secretary of homeland security. “Mathea, Howard, and Reed have joined Freedom House at a pivotal moment for democracy and human rights. I look forward to seeing their contributions to our work on reversing the worldwide trend of declining democracy and creating a world where all people are free. We are grateful and honored that these three extraordinary individuals have chosen to join Freedom House and support its vital cause.”

The new trustees:

Mathea Falco, a leading expert on drug abuse and drug policy, is the president of Drug Strategies, a nonprofit research institute she founded in 1993 with the support of major foundations. The first US assistant secretary of state for international narcotics matters, appointed by President Jimmy Carter, she held earlier positions as chief counsel of the US Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency and special assistant to the president of the Drug Abuse Council. She was also a fellow at Harvard University’s Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, and an associate professor at the Weill Cornell Medical College Department of Public Health. A graduate of Radcliffe College and Yale Law School, Ms. Falco served on the Board of Overseers of Harvard University and the Board of Trustees of Radcliffe College. She has served on the national boards of Girl Scouts, USA; Big Brothers of America; the International Women’s Health Coalition; the International Center for Research on Women; the Ploughshares Fund; the National Council on Crime and Delinquency, the Treatment Research Institute, and the Richard and Rhoda Goldman Fund. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Howard Konar is president of Konar Properties, a family-owned real estate development business in his hometown of Rochester, New York. Before joining Konar Properties, he worked as a lawyer and founder of Civic Genius (formerly Common Ground Solutions), an organization that highlights areas where American voters agree on policy issues and to connect them with their elected leaders.

Reed V. Tuckson, MD, FACP, is managing director of Tuckson Health Connections, LLC, a vehicle to advance initiatives that support optimal health and well-being through the intersection of health promotion and disease prevention; applied data and analytics; enhanced quality and efficiency in care delivery; and the application of telehealth and biotech innovations. Currently, Dr. Tuckson’s focus is on advancing his work as a co-founder of the Black Coalition Against COVID, a multistakeholder and interdisciplinary effort working to mitigate the COVID-19 pandemic in Washington, D.C., and nationally. Previously, he enjoyed a long tenure as executive vice president and chief of medical affairs for UnitedHealth Group, a Fortune 20 Health and well-being company. A recognized leader in his field, Dr. Tuckson is honored to have been appointed to leadership roles at the National Institutes of Health; the National Academy of Medicine; numerous federal advisory committees; and corporate, nonprofit, and academic boards. He has been recognized several times by Modern Healthcare Magazine’s “50 Most Powerful Physician Executives” in healthcare. He is a graduate of Howard University, Georgetown University School of Medicine, and the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania’s General Internal Medicine Residency and Fellowship Programs, where he was also a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholar studying at the Wharton School of Business.

The Board of Freedom House is proud to have included many prominent members since Eleanor Roosevelt and Wendell Willkie spearheaded its founding in 1941. These include civil rights attorney Charles Morgan, Jr.; pioneering Black labor leader and civil rights activist A. Philip Randolph; civil rights and human rights activist Bayard Rustin; diplomat and negotiator Sol Linowitz; Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan; lawyer and public servant William H. Taft IV; union leader Daniel J. Tobin; investor and author Peter Ackerman; Saturday Review editor Norman Cousins; NPR political correspondent Mara Liasson; author Bette Bao Lord, who received the Eleanor Roosevelt Award for Human Rights in 1998; author and political satirist PJ O’Rourke; famed detective novelist Rex Stout; anti-Nazi journalist Dorothy Thompson; and foreign policy scholar Paul Seabury.