It takes extraordinary leadership to take on the world's toughest challenges. While guiding our ambitious efforts based on Paul Allen’s big ideas, our leadership team fosters a culture of innovation that inspires us all to think big. At Vulcan, our leaders don’t just manage the work we do—they help define it. 


Through four decades after co-founding Microsoft, entrepreneur and philanthropist Paul G. Allen explored the frontiers of technology and human knowledge, and acting to change the future. Through Vulcan, Allen worked to save endangered species, slow climate change, improve ocean health, share art, history and film, develop new technology, tackle epidemics, research how the human brain works and build sustainable communities. In all his endeavors, Allen constantly asked “What if…?” and pushed people to challenge conventional thinking, collaborate across disciplines and reimagine what’s possible. 

Paul AllenAs the idea man and original technologist behind Microsoft, Allen used his wealth to expand the horizons of human possibility. All told, Allen's philanthropic contributions exceeded $2 billion. Even before becoming a member of the Giving Pledge, Allen committed to giving away the majority of his fortune. He invested in brain science and robotics research, retail space and outer space, documentaries and feature films, global health and local education.

Allen was deeply invested locally in his hometown of Seattle and the Pacific Northwest, and created public spaces including Flying Heritage & Combat Armor Museum, MoPOP and the Living Computer Museum + Labs -- where people learn and interact with Seattle’s historic, cultural and musical heritage. The inaugural Seattle Art Fair put the city on the map as one of the premier art destinations in the country. He also acted globally, making impact investments that will help developing countries expand their health, infrastructure and nurture a diversified economy.

Many of his ventures were seeded in his youth, and reflected the depth and diversity of his passions. He endeavored to create a new kind of future — a future that maps the intricacies inside our head, sets hidden talent alight and upends conventional thinking.

If we can understand the mysterious organ, the brain, we can pave the way towards understanding diseases like Alzheimer’s. If we can change the economics of space launches, we can change space travel and exploration. If we can get the formula right for a new kind of downtown neighborhood, it becomes a guide for the innovation centers of tomorrow. Paul was motivated by his commitment to sharing his ideas and discoveries with the world to help catalyze a better future.  

To learn more, visit PaulAllen.com.


As Chair of Vulcan Inc. and Trustee of the Paul G. Allen Trust, Jody Allen has responsibility for preserving and implementing Paul Allen’s vision for generations to come.

Photo of Jody AllenJody and her brother Paul Allen worked side-by-side in both business and philanthropic ventures. For more than two decades, Jody served as CEO of Vulcan, which she co-founded with Paul. She also co-founded and currently serves on the board of The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation. In addition, Jody is the President of the Board of MoPOP – Seattle’s critically acclaimed museum of popular culture – and the Chair of the Allen Institute’s Board of Directors.

As a philanthropist with a passion for conservation, she has dedicated herself to protecting marine life, fighting wildlife trafficking, and saving Africa’s elephants from extinction. She recently launched Wild Lives Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to wildlife conservation and other philanthropic initiatives. In addition, Jody serves as a board member of Sealife Response, Rehabilitation and Research, an organization dedicated to improving the health and welfare of marine wildlife in the Pacific Northwest.

Jody has a deep love for education and the arts. She is currently a board member of the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa, and previously served on the boards of ArtsFund, the Theatre Communications Group, the University of Washington Foundation, the Museum of Glass, the Los Angeles International Film Festival and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

Jody is a member of the board of the Seattle Seahawks. Recognizing the team’s role as a powerful catalyst for civic pride as well as an economic engine, she led the development of CenturyLink Field and Event Center. Jody also led the development of Moda Center, home of the Portland Trail Blazers.


Chief Executive Officer

Bill Hilf serves as Vulcan’s Chief Executive Officer, guiding its philanthropic, research, arts and culture, community, investments, policy and technology innovation programs and helping fulfill Paul Allen’s vision for the future. Tapping his experience as an executive and technologist, Bill leads Vulcan’s work to galvanize and enable smart people to tackle ambitious challenges head-on and guide its growth as it invests in its local communities, explores new frontiers in space, science, and technology, and impacts change around important issues like public health, the environment, conservation, and philanthropy.

Most recently, Bill served as Senior Vice President and General Manager of Hewlett-Packard Enterprise’s Cloud business unit. Prior to joining Hewlett-Packard, Bill was the General Manager of Product Management for Microsoft Azure, and previously led Microsoft’s Technical Computing Group. In that role, he helped develop solutions for a wide range of scientific and engineering challenges, including high performance computing, parallel languages and runtimes, and mathematical modeling tools. In the roaring 90s, he built his tech chops as a software developer and engineering leader through a variety of software start-ups in San Francisco and Los Angeles. 

Bill completed his undergraduate studies at California State University-Fullerton and received his M.A. from Chapman University. 

John W. Bernstein
Chief Financial Officer

John W. Bernstein is Vulcan’s Chief Financial Officer leading the Finance, Operations, and IT departments. He is responsible for Vulcan’s long-term financial plans and strategies across the entire philanthropic portfolio, helping to guide the organization’s commitment to its vision to make and leave the world a better place.

Before joining Vulcan in 2019, John served as the Chief Operating Officer of the Ford Foundation, a New York based, social justice foundation working to disrupt the drivers of inequality worldwide.  In his capacity at Ford he oversaw all areas of operations, technology, risk management, capital projects and finance globally.  Prior to that, John was the founding President of the Leon Levy Foundation, dedicated to the arts and humanities, human rights and civil liberties, understanding the ancient world, and neuroscience research. As the foundation’s first president, he oversaw its creation in 2004 working closely with trustees to set goals for all areas of the foundation’s philanthropy and administration, including its governance, financial management, and grant making. Earlier in his career, John served as Vice President for Finance and then as Senior Vice President for Institutional Development at the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx, and began his nonprofit career working in systems analysis and design at the New York Public Library.

John holds an MBA in Finance from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and also did his undergraduate work at the university, where he earned a combined degree in computer science, economics, and the history and sociology of science.

Chief Real Estate Officer, Vulcan Real Estate

Ada directs all strategies for Vulcan Real Estate and oversees $2 billion in real estate assets including the transformation of the formerly industrial neighborhood of South Lake Union into Seattle’s leading innovation district and the first LEED-certified neighborhood plan in Washington State and becoming the nation’s first “Salmon-Safe” real estate developer dedicated to decreasing the impact of construction on the marine environment. 

Ada is a leader in the development of integrated transportation systems and was instrumental in the passage of legislation for the South Lake Union Streetcar. Under her direction, Vulcan has earned widespread industry recognition and honors for its innovative and integrative development approaches and commitment to sustainability. Prior to joining Vulcan, Ada worked for 10 years at ING Clarion in asset management, acquisitions and portfolio management. She holds a bachelors from Duke University and an M.B.A. from New York University’s Leonard N. Stern School of Business.

Vice President, Communications and Marketing


Jason Hunke returned to Vulcan in 2020 as Vice President of Communications and Marketing, where he leads the team responsible for corporate communications, media relations, social/digital strategy, content marketing, and brand, design, and storytelling across Vulcan’s business and charitable initiatives.  

He joined Vulcan most recently from Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, where he led executive and employee communications as a senior member of the CEO’s office. Jason was previously Senior Vice President of Communications for Jackson Family Wines, America’s largest family-owned luxury winemaker, and General Manager of the Seattle and Portland offices of Edelman, the world’s largest communications consultancy where he advised clients including Gates Ventures, Microsoft Xbox, Starbucks, and the State of Washington.

Prior to Edelman, Jason was at Vulcan for 10 years as Senior Director of Marketing and PR, where he worked closely with our co-founders Paul and Jody Allen on a wide-range of initiatives. Jason served as corporate and family spokesperson, directed large-scale private events, and was instrumental in the launches of the Allen Institute for Brain Science, Flying Heritage Collection, the Hospital Club, Seattle Cinerama, the Museum of Pop Culture, Seahawks stadium, various Vulcan Productions feature film, documentary, and television projects, and communications for the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation. Jason serves on the national board for Communications Network, the community of leaders working in philanthropy communications, and holds an MBA in marketing from Regis University as well as a BS in business from the University of Colorado at Denver.


Vice President, Legal and General Counsel

As Vice President, Legal and General Counsel for Vulcan, Alison leads a nimble team that oversees and advises the organization on a wide range of legal, risk, contractual, and compliance matters. Her team has deep expertise on a range of topics and tackles issues related to Vulcan’s business interests in coordination with the Paul G. Allen Trust. Alison and her team also support the diverse philanthropic projects of Vulcan and the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation.

Before joining Vulcan in 2002, Alison was an associate at the Seattle firm of Stokes Lawrence, P.S.  Alison served as a member of the board of directors of Washington Lawyers for the Arts, has taught as adjunct professor at Seattle University School of Law, and is a frequent presenter on legal issues related to transactions in art and antiquities. Alison is a 1997 magna cum laude graduate of Seattle University School of Law where she was Executive Editor of the Seattle University Law Review.

General Manager, Vulcan Productions

Ruth Johnston is the General Manager of Vulcan Productions, the media arm of Vulcan Inc. Ruth leads Vulcan Productions’ creative media projects across multiple genres and platforms, producing content and campaigns that entertain, inspire, change the way people understand and activate on the world’s toughest challenges. Vulcan Productions’ projects have won awards at prestigious film festivals including Tribeca, Sundance, Venice and Cannes and have received Oscar nominations and Emmys. Her most recent work includes The Cold Blue, Ghost Fleet, USS Indianapolis: The Final Chapter and Ballet Now. She also manages Vulcan's content for emerging technologies including augmented and virtual reality, most recently X-Ray Fashion which premiered at the Venice Film Festival and Ghost Fleet VR which premiered at Sundance. Before becoming General Manager, Ruth served as Director of Production Management and Business Operations and was responsible for overseeing the business affairs and production management of Vulcan Production’s multi-platform content to broadcasters and distributors worldwide.

Prior to joining Vulcan, Ruth was COO of Lion TV in New York, supervising the production of documentary, investigative, entertainment and historical programming for the majority of cable and broadcast networks including PBS, Discovery, National Geographic, MTV and A&E.  Her work with Lion on the Cash Cab franchise garnered her two Emmy wins and three Emmy nominations. She has served as EP on productions for PBS, Investigation Discovery, National Geographic, MTV and multiple Scripps channels, as well as performing the role of Co-EP on the BAFTA and RTS award-winning Rebuilding the World Trade Center. Ruth began her production career in London, and after leading teams there, New York and Los Angeles, ultimately started her own media advisory company based in Seattle before joining Vulcan Productions.

Executive Vice President of Sports Strategy and Operations

Bert Kolde serves as the Vice Chair of the Portland Trail Blazers and Seattle Seahawks and is the Executive Vice President of Sports Strategy and Operations, where he oversees the long-term strategy and business operations of the teams and their affiliates.

Bert played an instrumental role in Paul Allen’s purchase of the Trail Blazers and Seahawks and worked closely with Allen on all of the team-related matters. He also spearheaded the creation Vulcan Sports and Entertainment. Bert grew up in Seattle and earned a Bachelor of Business Administration from Washington State University and a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Washington.

President, Vulcan Arts + Entertainment

As President of Vulcan Arts + Entertainment, Chris is focused on driving a comprehensive strategy for development, sales, and marketing across our portfolio of consumer-facing entities, including h Club London, h Club LA, Cinerama, Seattle Art Fair, and Upstream Music Fest + Summit. Vulcan Arts + Entertainment also represents and advances the activities of the Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP), Flying Heritage & Combat Armor Museum, and Living Computers: Museum + Labs.

Chris has worked with our founder, Paul G. Allen, since 2012 when he was named President & Chief Executive Officer of the Portland Trail Blazers and became one of the NBA’s youngest CEOs. In this role, Chris oversees all of the day-to-day business operations of the Portland Trail Blazers and Portland’s premier entertainment campus, The Rose Quarter. In 2018 Chris was named Chief Executive Officer of Vulcan Sports & Entertainment where he oversees business operations of all of Paul’s sports franchises and facilities, including the Portland Trail Blazers and The Rose Quarter in Portland, Oregon and the Seattle Seahawks, CenturyLink Field and WaMu Theater in Seattle, Washington. 
Chris moved to the Pacific Northwest from Los Angeles, where he spent 16 years honing his skills at one of the world’s largest entertainment companies, AEG, where he served as Chief Operating Officer.

Chief Human Resources Officer

As Vulcan's Chief Human Resources Officer, Tim leads a team of talented human resources professionals in building and implementing recruiting strategies supporting Vulcan’s ambitious and innovative programs, projects and initiatives. 

Tim is an experienced leader with a deep knowledge of developing, implementing, and improving programs that positively impact employees, operations and organizations. Prior to joining Vulcan, Tim spent 13 years as the Chief Human Resources Officer at the San Diego Zoo Global, a diverse organization of nearly 3,000 employees spread across various locations worldwide.

In 2016, Tim was named the “Chief Human Resources Officer of the Year” by HRO Global. Tim is also the co-author of Roar: How to Build a Resilient Organization the World-Famous San Diego Zoo Way. Previously, Tim held several senior leadership roles in human resources for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide.

Chief Investment Officer, Vulcan Capital

Chris Orndorff is Vulcan's Chief Investment Officer and responsible for identifying investment opportunities and optimizing returns for Vulcan Capital- Paul G. Allen's multi-billion dollar investment arm with offices in Seattle and Palo Alto. Chris brings an extensive track record of building and managing successful investment businesses and teams, with over 30 years of investment management and leadership experience. 

Prior to joining Vulcan, Chris was Senior Portfolio Manager for Western Asset Management where he oversaw multi-sector, unconstrained and absolute return portfolios. He was also a member of the board of directors for Mercer Advisors, where he advised on business, investment and marketing strategy.  Chris has spent about one-half of his career managing global equities, and the other half managing global fixed income. He also has extensive experience in asset allocation. 

Chris completed his undergraduate studies at Miami University and his MBA in finance and international business at The University of Chicago.  He is also a Chartered Financial Analyst.