When Howard Sutton completed his term as chairman of Crossroads Rhode Island, the homeless service organization honored him by establishing an organization endowment in his name at the Foundation. During Howard’s tenure as publisher of the Providence Journal
, the newspaper transferred assets to establish three permanent funds at the Foundation: the Providence Journal
Charitable Legacy Fund, Providence Journal
Holiday Fund, and Providence Journal
Now, Howard and his wife, Kim, are partnering with the Foundation for their personal philanthropy. “We enjoy helping people in the community, and this fund is an extension of that,” explains Howard, who was appointed to the Foundation board in 2015.
Howard grew up in Warwick and graduated from Warwick Veterans Memorial High School before earning an undergraduate degree from Notre Dame University and an MBA from Providence College. He also is a graduate of Harvard Business School’s Program for Management Development.
He began his professional career at the Warwick Beacon
as circulation manager, soon leaving to join the Providence Journal
as a circulation statistician.
“I continued to grow with the organization,” Howard says modestly of his 41-year career at the state’s leading newspaper, which culminated with his being named publisher, president, and CEO in 1999. He held the position until his 2014 retirement. He remains active as president of Gipper Consulting and is executive-in-residence for Johnson & Wales University.
It was at the Journal
that he met his wife. A native Rhode Islander, Kim graduated from Cranston High School East and Katharine Gibbs School. She worked at Edwards & Angell before joining the Journal
as an executive secretary, leaving when the couple married.
The Suttons have served on the boards of more than 30 nonprofits, including Providence Public Library, Linden Place, Meeting Street, Salve Regina University, Rhode Island Philharmonic, and United Way of Rhode Island.
”Our biggest passion is helping the homeless,” Howard shares, noting he has been involved with Crossroads for 15 years; he and Kim have co-chaired Crossroads’ annual special event for the past 11 years.
Of their commitment, Howard notes simply, “People shouldn’t be homeless, and kids shouldn’t be sleeping in cars.”