Helmsley Announces Cathy Jessup as New Chief Financial Officer

New York, NY—The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust this month welcomed Cathy Jessup as the new Chief Financial Officer. Jessup comes to Helmsley from her former role as the CFO of WestconGroup, where she led the overall finance function of the global technology distributor.

Jessup’s extensive career in financial management and services spans a variety of large, multinational companies and small, entrepreneurial organizations. Before WestconGroup, she served as CFO for Pitney Bowes’ $2 billion services divisions and was instrumental in the sale of the business to a private equity firm. Previously, she directed the finance function of the North American division of Diageo PLC, a U.K.-based beverage company, and served as CFO of the Topps Company. Jessup additionally held a range of leadership positions over several years with PepsiCo, Inc.

“We are thrilled to have Cathy on the Helmsley team. She brings a tremendous background in world-class companies and a vast array of experiences as a leader in financial management,” said Stephanie Cuskley, CEO of the Helmsley Charitable Trust. “Cathy will help all of us here at Helmsley to continuously improve our efforts and advance the impact of the organizations and missions we support.”

“I could not be more delighted to join the Helmsley Charitable Trust,” said Jessup. “The opportunity to offer my experience to such an impressive organization that seeks to improve lives around the world is immensely exciting, and I am honored to be part of that mission.”

Jessup succeeds Leigh Bonney, who is retiring after five years as Helmsley’s CFO. Bonney previously led an outstanding career in banking, strategic consulting, and more than 15 years at Pfizer as a senior leader in strategy and finance. She joined Helmsley at an early stage of the foundation’s development, and has played a critical role in building Helmsley’s finance, IT, and operations functions.

“Leigh’s considerable experience in strategy and finance as well as her lifelong commitment to philanthropy made her invaluable to Helmsley as it was taking shape,” said Cuskley. “She has been a wise and generous mentor to many and an engaging colleague to us all. We owe enormous thanks to Leigh for her countless contributions to Helmsley and her extraordinary efforts to maximize the effect of our work.”