Chris Stone is Professor of Practice of Public Integrity. Chris has blended theory and practice throughout a career dedicated to justice sector reform, good governance, and innovation in the public interest, working with governments and civil society organisations in dozens of countries worldwide. He has served as president of the Open Society Foundations (2012-2017), as Guggenheim Professor of the Practice of Criminal Justice at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government (2004-2012), as faculty director of the Hauser Center for Nonprofit Organizations at Harvard University (2007-2012), and as president and director of the Vera Institute of Justice (1994-2004).
As the second president of George Soros’s global philanthropies, Chris unified and streamlined the Open Society Foundations, building it into one of the world’s largest philanthropic enterprises, spanning public health, education, internet freedom, independent journalism, public integrity, economic advancement, human rights, and the rule of law. He put highest priority on building strong organisations for the long-term in each country and field where the foundations worked. Chris’s leadership at OSF built on his work at Harvard’s Hauser Center for Nonprofit Organizations where he taught the strategic management of nonprofit organisations, published research on the role of “brand” in the social sector, and helped establish the Initiative on Responsible Investment within the Center.
Throughout his career, Chris’s principal focus has been criminal justice reform in countries from the United States and the United Kingdom to Chile, China, India, Nigeria, South Africa, Turkey, and more. Chris has been an advisor to public defenders, police leaders, and public prosecutors, assisting at the creation of the Crown Prosecution Service of England and Wales, the National Prosecuting Authority of South Africa, and the Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court. He led the Kennedy School’s Program in Criminal Justice (2005-2012) including chairing Executive Sessions on Policing and Public Safety, Judicial Leadership, and Human Rights Commissions, as well as leading the development of indicators to measure improvement in the quality of justice.
Early in his career, he served as a public defender in Washington, DC, he co-founded the Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem, and chaired the board of the New York State Capital Defender Office. In 2005, he received an honorary OBE for his contributions to criminal justice reform in the United Kingdom.