ceo & President
Grant Coates is Chief Executive Officer and President of The Miles Foundation. In 2001, Mr. Coates joined Miles Production Company, Ellison Miles’ predecessor oil and gas business. Mr. Coates served in various financial roles for Miles Production Company and, subsequently, for The Miles Foundation, for three years. In 2009, Mr. Coates was elected to the Board of Directors of The Miles Foundation, and in 2011, he was named President. In this role, Mr. Coates is responsible for the general management of the Foundation, including the oversight of the grant submission and selection process, as well as the stewardship of the Foundation’s investments. Mr. Coates leads the Foundation’s Investment Committee, serves on the Board of several of the Foundation’s portfolio companies, and ensures the organization’s fidelity to its outlined investment strategy.
Mr. Coates takes great pride in the positive change The Miles Foundation continues to achieve for local communities through its grant projects and partners. Mr. Coates earned a bachelor’s degree in Finance from the University of North Texas, and an MBA from Texas Christian University. He currently serves on the TCU College of Education Board of Visitors, Foundant Technologies CORE Advisory Board, and the Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF) Education Advisory Council. Mr. Coates is also a co-founder of the Fort Worth chapter of the Liberty Leadership Council, and is a founding member of WORTH at the North Texas Community Foundation. He has two children, Owen and Isabel, and resides in Fort Worth, Texas.
P: 817.293.5555 (ext 102)
Sherry Wilson has served on the Board of Directors of The Miles Foundation since the inception of the Foundation in 1997. Ms. Wilson originally began working for Miles Production Company in 1981. In 1993, she became Corporate Secretary for the company, as well as personal secretary to Mr. Miles. As a Director at The Miles Foundation, Ms. Wilson’s role includes managing many of the administrative duties of the Foundation, as well as participating in the grant selection process. Ms. Wilson enjoys carrying on Ellison Miles’ dream of furthering education opportunities and making a positive impact on the lives of so many people, as did Mr. Miles throughout his lifetime. Ms. Wilson received her education in Duncan, Oklahoma. She currently resides in Weatherford, Texas.
Jack Burdett has served on The Miles Foundation’s Board of Directors since the Foundation’s beginning in 1997. Mr. Burdett started working as an accountant for Ellison Miles’ oil and gas firm, Miles Production Company, in 1981. In his current position, Mr. Burdett oversees many of the day-to-day financial activities of The Miles Foundation, in addition to participating in the Foundation’s grant selection process. Mr. Burdett believes that the people at The Miles Foundation always have been genuinely dedicated to carrying out Mr. Miles’ mission, and that this passion is what propels the Foundation and enables its continued success today. Mr. Burdett earned a BBA in Accounting from the University of Oklahoma, and formerly served on the Board of Directors of the Dallas County Community College District Foundation. Mr. Burdett resides in Denton, Texas.
P: 817.293.5555 (ext 104)
Sara J. Redington
Director of Strategy & Communications
Sara Redington is Director of Strategy & Communications for The Miles Foundation. Ms. Redington brings 10 years of strategic planning, marketing, and communications experience to her role. She founded Redington Solutions in 2009, a marketing and communications firm serving businesses in Texas and across the country. Prior to that endeavor, Ms. Redington led both local and international business development efforts at the global law firm of K&L Gates. Today, she helps connect The Miles Foundation to its mission by spearheading strategic partnerships that amplify community impact, communicating with key stakeholders about industry trends and foundation news, and aligning Foundation practices with its long-term vision for success. Ms. Redington graduated cum laude from Vanderbilt University with a B.A. in Communications and Psychology. She lives in Dallas, Texas with her husband, Zach, and daughter, Emma Joy.
P: 817.293.5555 (ext 107)
Director of Programs
Kate Wisniewski is Director of Programs for The Miles Foundation. Prior to joining The Miles Foundation in October 2017, Ms. Wisniewski served as Vice President of Development at Dallas Afterschool. In this role, she helped guide the organization in the advancement of its program quality initiative, while building key relationships to further the organization’s mission. Ms. Wisniewski partnered with local agencies to help facilitate utilization of best practices, measure community-wide progress, and increase access to quality programs for children most in need. Prior to her work at Dallas Afterschool, Ms. Wisniewski spent five years in education, deepening community engagement through the execution of strategic initiatives for the University of Dallas and the Great Hearts Academies charter school network. Ms. Wisniewski graduated with honors from the University of Oklahoma and earned her MBA from the University of Dallas. She currently resides in Colleyville, Texas, with her husband Michael.
P: 817.293.5555 (ext 106)
Fernanda Bigham is Executive Assistant for The Miles Foundation. Mrs. Bigham joined The Miles Foundation in 2015. In her current position, Mrs. Bigham assists the President on myriad projects on behalf of the Foundation. In addition to facilitating all administrative activities, she works to elevate team efficiency by optimizing office processes and procedures. Prior to joining The Miles Foundation, Mrs. Bigham served as client business manager and foreign language translator (Spanish, English, and French) for a local linguistics company. Mrs. Bigham graduated magna cum laude from Texas Christian University in 2013. She currently resides in Fort Worth, Texas.
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