John E. Brown, III has served as the Executive Director of the Windgate Charitable Foundation since its founding in 1993. The Foundation’s grants are primarily directed to arts education projects, K-12 school improvement programs, higher education initiatives, programs to strengthen family relationships, and some human service programs.
He is a former president of John Brown University, the Christian college founded by his late grandfather in 1919. He received a B.S. degree in Business Administration from JBU in 1971 and a J.D. from the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, School of Law in 1974. Brown also joined the JBU staff in 1974 and served as president from 1979-1993.
From 1995-2002, Brown served two-terms as a Senator in the Arkansas Legislature. He sat on various committees, including the Senate Education Committee, the Joint Budget Committee, and the Legislative Council. For one term he served as co-chair of the Joint Interim Committee on Children and Youth. While a State Senator, he authored and passed major legislation in juvenile justice, nursing home care, and education.
Brown served twice as Chairman of the Board of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA), a national coalition of (then) over 1200 Christian ministries which subscribe to fund-raising and financial disclosure standards for membership. He is currently a trustee of John Brown University and is a past Board President of Philanthropy Southwest, a professional association of some 240 grantmakers from seven states.
Brown and his wife, Stephania, live in Siloam Springs, AR, and have five adult children and ten grandchildren.