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Liz McNamee

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Liz McNamee
headshot of Liz McNamee Senior Fellow at Bellwether Education Partners
Associate Partner
Strategic Advising

Background: Liz McNamee is an associate partner with Bellwether in the Strategic Advising practice area. Liz has 15 years of experience in philanthropy, education, and social innovation, and she specializes in helping funders and nonprofits align their investments, advance their mission, and maximize impact. Prior to joining Bellwether in 2019, Liz worked with several leading foundations and nonprofit consulting firms, including the Robin Hood Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and TCC Group.

As a senior program officer at Robin Hood, Liz helped craft the strategy for the $25 million Learning + Technology Fund and oversaw the foundation’s investments in literacy, college access/success, and personalized learning. She oversaw several funder collaboratives and public-private partnerships, including an $81 million partnership with New York City and several private funders to bring computer science education to all public school students. She also cultivated a merger between Robin Hood and the Blue Ridge Foundation, resulting in the creation of Blue Ridge Labs (a technology-focused social innovation incubator) within Robin Hood. Previously, as a member of the Pioneer Portfolio at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Liz collaborated with grantees to introduce disruptive innovations in health and health care. Liz earned her MBA at the Yale School of Management and her bachelor’s from Brown University.

Why I do this work: I believe that ensuring all kids have access to a high-quality education is one of the most important and enduring forces for counteracting and dismantling structural inequality. I believe that with a shared sense of commitment and smart allocation of resources, our communities can and must give every child an excellent education that opens doors to limitless opportunity in life.

Experience at Bellwether: Strategic Planning; Program Evaluation/Evaluation Capacity-Building; Business Plan Development; Human Capital/Organizational Design; Grant Development and Implementation; Project Management; Foundations

Client segments served: Postsecondary/Higher Education; State Education Agencies; Foundations and Grantees; Nonprofit Organizations; Policy Organizations

Recent Media

Hailly T.N. Korman
Liz McNamee
Bonnie O’Keefe

In too many conversations about how to meet young people’s educational, housing, health, and other needs, one voice is critically missing: those most impacted. If communities want to equitably serve young people, problem solving must start with the young people and families who are experiencing the issue. Designing From the Margins is a new Bellwether Education Partners toolkit for practitioners in schools, districts, community non-profits, and other child-serving agencies. The toolkit shares design strategies for problem solving that start by engaging those who are most directly affected by a problem to create an effective, equitable, and sustainable solution.