Dietra L. Ford Child Savings Account Program

Introducing the Dietra L. Ford Children’s Savings Account Program

Martha’s Table has announced that its new children’s savings account (CSA) program will be named in honor of Dietra L. Ford, a native Washingtonian who dedicated her life to supporting childhood causes. She is also the late mother of former president and CEO Kim R. Ford.
The CSA program – now the Dietra L. Ford Children’s Savings Account Program – provides children who have been enrolled for one year in Martha’s Table’s early childhood education program with a seed investment of $1,000, which families can continue to contribute to in the future. Upon graduating from high school, students will be able to put their savings toward ongoing education and training or to pursue other income- or wealth-generating opportunities, such as buying a home or starting a business.
Dietra L. Ford was born in Washington in 1946 and graduated from McKinley Tech High School and Howard University. Ford spent more than 20 years as a senior executive in both the legislative and executive branches of the federal government. From 1975 to 1993, she worked on the Committee on the District of Columbia in the U.S. House of Representatives, where she served as Senior Legislative Associate, the principal staff member responsible for congressional legislation and oversight for numerous government activities within the Committee’s jurisdiction. She also received two appointments in President Clinton’s administration: in 1992, Ford was appointed by President-elect Clinton and Vice President-elect Gore as one of the nine transition cluster group leaders, heading a team of professionals that assessed seven federal agencies in preparation for the new administration. In 1996, President Clinton appointed her Associate Administrator in the Office of Enterprise Development for the U.S. General Services Administration, where she oversaw $20 billion in assets and tens of thousands of employees nationally. She also served as a Commissioner of the National Capital Planning Commission, the central federal planning agency in the National Capital Region.
Among other affiliations and activities, Ford served on the Board of Trustees for Sibley Memorial Hospital and was a member of both Leadership Washington and the Governing Board for the American Hospital Association’s Section for Maternal and Child Health. Ford, whose face would light up around kids, left an indelible impact on the lives of so many of her friends, family members, and colleagues.
Over the past decade, CSA programs have expanded across the country, with initiatives in more than 34 states. CSA programs provide children ages 0-18 with investments that help them build savings for their future while addressing the wealth gap. 
Mei Powers
Martha’s Table