Announcing Maria De La Cruz’s Departure from Headwaters

A note from Maria De La Cruz, Headwaters President

Dear Community,  

I am writing to share that I have decided to leave Headwaters Foundation for Justice. Being part of this institution and the communities we serve has been life changing. I’ve been lucky to spend the past 8 years with you—Headwaters’ grantees, donors, partners, and friends—fighting for a more just, more liberated world. My final day at Headwaters will be Thursday, July 28. 

Like so many people I know, the past few years have been marked by significant personal challenges and transformation. Making the decision to leave Headwaters is not easy. However, I know that this is the right decision for my family and me. I am grateful to those friends, family, and mentors who have supported me to prioritize my spouse and children, as well as my mental health. 

I am proud of what we have accomplished together. Headwaters’ work and community is strong. Over the past 3 years, Headwaters has moved more than $11 million through our community-led grantmaking programs, donor advised funds, and rapid response grantmaking. Our staff, volunteers, and donor communities continue to grow and show up for our grantees and movements for justice in Minnesota. 

In the years ahead, I see a transformative future for Headwaters. The staff and board are dedicated to our mission, the communities we serve, and to each other.  

I can’t wait to join the ranks of Headwaters’ superfans and supporters.  

To the future,  

Maria De La Cruz, JD  


A note from Camille Cyprian, Headwaters Board Chair   

I want to express my sincere thanks for the incredible impact Maria has had at Headwaters for the past 8 years. Throughout her tenure, she has been deeply committed to our mission, our staff, and our grantees.   

Maria has led Headwaters through significant adversity: the COVID-19 pandemic, the murder of George Floyd, and continued threats to our democracy. Through it all she stayed focused on the work of Headwaters, ensuring that staff were cared for and our grantees received critical resources.  

Under Maria’s leadership Headwaters has increased its annual grantmaking from $1.3 million in 2019 to over $3.4 million in 2022, making us even stronger in our role as a social justice community foundation moving money to movements.  

The work of Headwaters remains more important than ever and we are well positioned, thanks to Maria’s leadership, to continue to grow our support of movements for justice in Minnesota. We are excited about Headwaters’ future, and will share more information with our community in the coming weeks and months.  

For questions, please feel free to contact me at 

Forward together, 

Camille Cyprian 

Board Chair