Senior Education Counsel, Office of the President
GETTING TO KNOW CRIS
Beyond your job title, please explain your role at Creative.
I support and advise the Education division as it seeks to expand its donor base and highlight its technical expertise. I also support Creative’s legal work and external relations efforts.
Do you have an accomplishment or programmatic result or activity that you are particularly proud of?
I am proud of my work to help U.S. policymakers understand the vital importance and impact of basic education programs, and allocate sufficient resources to their implementation. I am also proud that I was able to successfully lead a diverse and competing network of development organizations in our advocacy and policy efforts.
Do you have a favorite, unique or fascinating story about your work in development?
When we visited an elementary school in Ghana a few years ago, we were surprised to be greeted at the beginning of the school’s long driveway by the entire student body, who led us in a parade—singing, shouting and playing instruments—up to the school grounds. There, we were entertained by dancers, watched skits and listened to speeches by the community leaders. Afterwards, I addressed the village and thanked them for the honor they bestowed on us. It was one of the most memorable days of my life because I saw how deeply they valued something that we sometimes here take for granted- a good education.
What is it that drew you to the company?
Having worked closely with Charito Kruvant and others from Creative while at the Basic Education Coalition, I was impressed by the energy, integrity and expertise of this organization. But even more importantly, I saw the way they collaborated with us, worked with one another, and treated everyone with dignity and respect. I also know that this organization has accomplished much for people across the globe and that its potential to do even more is unlimited. The excitement and commitment of the people here to have that enduring impact on the lives of others resonates with me personally and professionally, and I want to be a part of it.
What do you appreciate most about Creative’s approach to project implementation?
I have always been impressed by Creative’s understanding of the social, political, cultural and other factors that provide the crucial context for the programs we undertake. It is particularly challenging to work in education throughout the developing world, but even more so in situations of conflict, disaster and crisis. That Creative can undertake successful programs in the most difficult circumstances has always distinguished its implementation efforts to me, and it is a point of pride to the organization.
Global education advocacy and policy, international trade litigation, regulatory and policy work
Executive Director of the Basic Education Coalition, Washington, DC 2007-2014 | King and Spalding, Washington DC 2004-2007
BA in US History and Human Relations, Connecticut College, New London, CT | JD in Law, Columbus School of Law, Catholic University
HONORS & AWARDS:
UN Association – National Capital Area Human Rights Award
ASSOCIATIONS & CERTIFICATIONS:
Society for International Development; Advisory Council, UN Association for National Capital Area
“The excitement and commitment of the people here to have that enduring impact on the lives of others resonates with me personally and professionally, and I want to be a part of it.”