Ellen Hassenfeld Block


Ellen “Ellie” Block is President of Nonsense, Inc. a gift, accessories and art consultant business. Ellie is a Tufts University graduate and registered occupational therapist who worked professionally at the Illinois State Psychiatric Institute and the Chicago Institute of Rehabilitation. While her philanthropic interests range from art to urban issues to community development, her abiding passion is for children. She joined the Toy Industry Foundation Board in 2005 and chairs its Grant Committee. She has offered her leadership to a variety of organizations, with posts past and president including: Chairman of the Hasbro Children’s Foundation, which focused on improving the quality of life for children, Vice President of the Board of the National Lekotek Association, a group dedicated to using play to improve the lives of disabled children and help integrate them into mainstream life; serving on diverse boards – Taylor Institute Think Tank on Urban Issues, American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee where she has chaired the International Development Program Committee for Disaster Relief, was a Vice Chair of Meyers Brookdale Institute, and chaired the Children’s Initiative Committee. She is Chair of Board of Overseers Tufts University – Friedman School of Nutrition. She also serves as an Overseer a the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University. Ellen is a Trustee of the University of Chicago Hospitals and Health System and Chairman of the Executive Committee of the September 11 Children’s Foundation. In 2000, Ms. Block was named one of “100 Women Making a Difference” by Today’s Chicago Woman magazine. She was awarded the Charles Loring Brace Award from Children’s Aid Society and the National Hannah Solomon Award for work in literacy. Ms. Block holds an Honorary Doctorate Degree from the Audrey Cohen College for Social Research.