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Four New Members Join Smithsonian Libraries and Archives Board

Media only: Liz O’Brien (202) 633-1522; Feb. 23, 2021

The Smithsonian Institution’s Board of Regents appointed John Chickering, Christopher Clark, Christopher Lee and Nick Santhanam to the Smithsonian Libraries and Archives Advisory Board. They join 13 prominent community and business leaders dedicated to building the Libraries and Archives’ collections, increasing digital initiatives, advancing education, progressing library and archival preservation, creating high-quality exhibitions and programs and securing a financial legacy.

“It is my pleasure to welcome four outstanding new members to the Smithsonian Libraries and Archives Advisory Board,” said Scott E. Miller, interim director of the Smithsonian Libraries and Archives and the Smithsonian’s chief scientist. “Invaluable leaders in their fields, their experience and guidance will tremendously benefit the Libraries and Archives’ continued growth as a critical global resource. We are fortunate to tap into their extensive wisdom and diverse perspectives.”

The Smithsonian Libraries and Archives Advisory Board consists of members from across the United States. The mission of the board is to help the organization to provide authoritative information, steward the Smithsonian’s institutional memory and create innovative services and programs for Smithsonian researchers, scholars, scientists, curators, archivists, historians and other staff, as well as the public at large.

John Chickering

John Chickering advises boards and senior executives on strategy, technology and operations. He has a track record of effectively bridging business operations and information technology to deploy diverse digital transformation solutions across large enterprises.

As a pioneer in the development of digital archiving solutions, Chickering’s work was cited in industry trade press and he wrote papers for peer-review publications. For the Department of Defense, he defined a system to store over 100 million engineering drawings across dozens of domestic sites.

For Fidelity Investments, he deployed a cross-enterprise digital archive solution. While serving as a chief information officer in Fidelity’s private equity portfolio, Chickering built out the technology for a corporate off-site records storage facility and was a principal thought leader in
forming Fidelity’s digital records archive strategy. He led a multi-year enterprise digital transformation initiative that migrated complex high-volume customer communications from paper to eDelivery.

Chickering’s board experience includes both fiduciary and advisory boards for commercial, educational and other non-profit institutions where he has held various executive committee positions, including chair. He is a Fellow of the Association for Intelligent Information Management and is an occasional speaker at industry conferences and seminars hosted in academia.

Chickering volunteers with several community service organizations and has led over 15 hurricane/storm restoration work teams on the ground in Mississippi, New York, Vermont and Florida. He holds a Bachelor of Science in marine engineering from the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and an MBA from the University of Maryland.

Christopher Clark

Christopher York Clark joined Directorship as senior vice president and publisher in December 2002. In 2006, he was promoted to president and publisher of Directorship Services LLC. As senior director of Partner Relations and Publisher, he is presently responsible for the revenue development and conduct of NACD Directorship Magazine, NACD corporate governance forums and director roundtables. In addition, he currently heads the programming for NACD’s Leading Minds of Compensation Forum and NACD’s Leading Minds of Governance Conference. Further, he is the creator of NACD Private Company Directorship and the architect and day-to-day catalyst of NACD’s Power of Difference program.

Clark joined NACD following a decade of service at Forbes Inc. Most recently, he was vice president, sales for Earlier he served as vice president and general manager of the Forbes Management Conference Group, a leading producer of senior-executive meetings. In this capacity, he oversaw P&L, sales, marketing, program development and logistics for all Forbes conferences. Prior to that position, he served as Forbes magazine’s financial services advertising director.

Presently, Clark is a member of the Broadridge Virtual Shareholder Meeting Best Practices Working Group, and a contributing member of NACD’s Flag and General Officer Advisory Council. He received a Bachelor of Arts from Denison University.
Christopher Lee

Chris Lee is a partner at FAA Investments, a private investment group focusing on real estate, early-stage companies and in-depth research on hedge funds and private equity managers. With home bases in San Francisco and Hong Kong, Lee and his partners allocate capital globally. He is fluent in English and Chinese.

Additionally, Lee is a board director with expertise in financial markets, risk management, governance and leadership development. Currently, he serves as an Independent Board Member with Matthews Asia Funds, the largest US Investment Company (’40 Act) with a dedicated focus on Asia Pacific markets.

Previously, Lee was an investment banker for 18 years, acting as managing director and divisional and regional heads at Deutsche Bank AG, UBS Investment Bank AG and Bank of America Merrill Lynch. He worked in global capital markets, managed derivative product development and provided equity sales and trading functions to institutional investors.

He is an advocate of sustainable enterprises and environmentally conscious projects, serving on various boards with a passion for promoting education, conservation, energy efficiency and sustainability. Lee also serves on the boards of University of California, Berkeley-Haas Dean’s Advisory Circle, African Wildlife Foundation, Hong Kong Securities and Investment Institute and Salzburg Global Seminar.

Academically, Lee is an associate professor of science practice at HKUST and teaches financial mathematics and risk management courses. He completed the AMP at Harvard University and holds a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering and an MBA from the University of California, Berkeley.

Nick Santhanam

Nick Santhanam is a senior Partner in McKinsey & Company’s Silicon Valley Office and leads their global industrials practice. Nick also leads their S5C (Sub $5 billion companies) practice. Nick serves industrials/industrial-tech companies on their end-to-end strategy and performance transformation efforts. He has led their work on “McKinsey on industrials,” “McKinsey on Packaging,” “McKinsey on flow control,” “McKinsey on food processing and handling,” “McKinsey on construction” and several other knowledge efforts, which are deep dives in various industrial micro verticals, to map the secular growth headwinds and tailwinds as well as what it takes for companies to create and capture value. He also hosts their annual CEO summits—Industrial CEO (GILS), Tech CEOs (T-30), Family-owned companies CEO (L-20)—as well as he the host and convener of their executive learning programs including board learning event on disruptions (NWDS), investor learning on disruptions (NWDS-I) and executive learning event on transformations (APT-30). In the past 36 months, he has led multiple successful transformations of companies, which has led to 200-500 basis points of margin expansion and significant shareholder value creation.

Prior to joining McKinsey, Santhanam worked as a technical manager at Taconic (a PCB/ceramics manufacturer), Petersburgh, New York. Prior to Taconic, he worked as a manufacturing engineer at Arlon in their Bear, Delaware facility.

Santhanam has a Master of Science in chemical engineering from University of Illinois and an MBA in strategic management and finance from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. He graduated as a Ford and Palmer scholar from Wharton.
About the Smithsonian Libraries and Archives

The Smithsonian Libraries and Archives is an international system of 21 library branches and an institutional archives. It maintains a collection of nearly 3 million volumes and 44,000 cubic feet of archival materials. The Libraries and Archives serves as an educational resource for the Smithsonian Institution, the global research community and the public. Locations are in Washington, D.C., Maryland, Virginia, New York City and the Republic of Panama. Find out more at

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