The Sant Foundation was founded as a private foundation in 2015 to complement the ongoing work of The Summit Foundation, which had been created by the same founders in 1991, as well as the founders’ personal charitable interests following the wind-down of The Summit Fund of Washington.
In addition to its grant making activities, the foundation seeks to build a portfolio of financial investments that align with the programs and ambition of the Summit Foundation. The Sant Foundation expects that it will ultimately combine with the Summit Foundation.
Roger W. Sant
Roger W. Sant is co-founder and chair of the Sant Foundation.
Mr. Sant is co-founder and Chair Emeritus of The AES Corporation, a Fortune 200 company that generates and distributes electrical power across the globe.
Prior to starting AES in 1981, Mr. Sant was Assistant Administrator for Energy Conservation and the Environment at the Federal Energy Administration. He was also the Director of the Energy Productivity Center, an energy research organization affiliated with the Mellon Institute at Carnegie-Mellon University, and a lecturer in Finance at the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
Mr. Sant is the co-founder and chair of The Summit Foundation, which concentrates on three areas of grantmaking: ocean conservation, where it has been focused on the restoration of the Mesoamerican Reef; equality for women and girls, particularly in Belize, Honduras, Guatemala and portions of Mexico; and in improving the sustainability of cities in North America.
Mr. Sant served as a Regent of the Smithsonian Institution from 2001 to 2013 during which he served as its first Board Chair. He is Vice Chair of the board of the World Wildlife Fund-U.S., which he previously chaired (1994-2000). Mr. Sant is a member of the boards of the National Symphony Orchestra, the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, and the World Resources Institute. He is also a member of the Stanford Advisory Council for the Natural Capital Project. Mr. Sant served on the Marriott International Board of Directors from 1994-2006.
Mr. Sant received a B.S. from Brigham Young University and an MBA with Distinction from the Harvard Business School, and is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is co-author of Creating Abundance – America’s Least-Cost Energy Strategy (1982).
Victoria P. Sant is the co-founder and co-Chairperson of the Sant Foundation.
Ms. Sant is also co-founder and President of The Summit Foundation. The Summit Foundation provides support for international empowerment of girls and reproductive health initiatives, the conservation of the Mesoamerican Reef ecosystem, and Sustainable Cities. From 1993 to March of 2015 Vicki served as the co-founder and President of The Summit Fund of Washington that focused its efforts on improving the health and sustainability of the Anacostia River and preventing teen pregnancy in the District of Columbia.
Vicki Sant has been a member of the Board of Trustees of the National Gallery of Art since 2000 and served as chair from 2003 to 2014. She is a member of the Board of The Phillips Collection, Vital Voices Global Partnership, The National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, Foundation for Art and Preservation in Embassies (FAPE), The Brookings Institution, The International Center for Research on Women (ICRW) and Kakenya Center for Excellence. She is Chair of the Stanford in Washington Council and also serves on the World Wildlife Fund National Council, the National Geographic Council of Advisors, the International Council of MoMA – Museum of Modern Art, Stanford Cantor Arts Center, Stanford Arts Advisory Council and Stanford Center on Longevity. Mrs. Sant completed her term on the Stanford University Board of Trustees in 2007. She is an Emeritus member of The Community Foundation for the National Capital Region.
She received a Bachelor’s degree in History and did graduate work in Speech Pathology and Audiology, both from Stanford University.
President and Director
Lex Sant has been president of the Sant Foundation since its inception in 2015 and a director since 2016. He is responsible for developing strategies and initiatives that support the foundation’s mission.
Prior to starting the Sant Foundation, he was co-founder and managing director of Persimmon Tree Capital, a private investment fund focused on renewable energy and energy efficiency investments, founded in 2008.
Mr. Sant also worked for five years at the AES Corporation, a leading global power company with electrical generation and distribution businesses in more than 20 countries. At AES, Mr. Sant was most recently a director in the Alternative Energy group, for which he was responsible for the origination and execution of transactions related to biofuels, wind, and other forms of renewable energy. Prior to that position, Mr. Sant had responsibility for large-scale mergers and acquisitions and corporate strategy.
Before joining AES, Mr. Sant worked in public relations from 1994 to 2000 for the Carolina Panthers, a franchise of the National Football League. He is treasurer and trustee of the Summit Foundation; is a member of the national board of directors for the Trust for Public Land; and serves on the executive committee of the board of trustees for the Federal City Council. He is past chairman of Island Press, a leading publisher of books on the environment and, until 2014, served on the executive committee of the board of trustees for the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.
Mr. Sant holds an MBA with High Distinction from Harvard Business School and a bachelor’s degree in English from Dickinson College.
Jason A. Hicks
Vice President and Chief Investment Officer
Jason A. Hicks is Vice President and Chief Investment Officer of the Sant Foundation. He is responsible for all investment activities and financial administration.
Prior to the founding of the Sant Foundation, Mr. Hicks was co-founder and Managing Director of Persimmon Tree Capital, a Washington, D.C.-based private equity firm. At Persimmon Tree, Mr. Hicks was responsible for origination, execution, and oversight of multiple investments in early- and mid-stage clean energy companies.
Before founding Persimmon Tree Capital, Mr. Hicks was Director, Portfolio Management at the AES Corporation where he led and co-led multiple M&A and financing transactions. Prior to that position, Mr. Hicks was Director, Global Business Development for AES where he was responsible for analyzing acquisitions of generation and utility businesses.
Prior to joining AES, Mr. Hicks was Manager, Structuring and Analysis for PG&E Corporation’s National Energy Group where he was responsible for the pricing and structuring of complex commodity transactions. He has also served as a strategy and regulatory consultant to many clients in the power and gas sector as an Associate at McKinsey & Co., The Brattle Group, and Putnam Hayes & Bartlett.
Mr. Hicks holds graduate degrees from The Wharton School and the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, both at the University of Pennsylvania. He graduated magna cum laude from The American University.
Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary
Sioban Reyes is Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary of the Sant Foundation. She is responsible for all corporate governance and compliance.
Ms. Reyes is Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Sant Associates, LLC, formed in 2006. She manages a grants portfolio with a focus on the environment, the arts, and community improvement.
From 1997-2003, Ms. Reyes worked at the AES Corporation, a global power company with electrical generation and distribution businesses worldwide. At AES, Ms. Reyes was most recently Special Assistant to the Chairman. She was previously Administrative Assistant to the President of the Americas Group, which focused on business development and acquisitions in Latin America.
Ms. Reyes received a B.A. from the University of Maryland, College Park and a J.D. from American University Washington College of Law. Ms. Reyes is admitted to practice in Maryland.