Senior Gender Advisor
Natalie Elwell is the senior gender advisor, working to ensure that WRI’s programs, activities and policies benefit women and men equally and contribute to gender equity.
Elwell joins WRI from USAID where she served as the Senior Advisor for Gender and Environment, working to build capacity within the Agency to advance and leverage women’s empowerment and gender equality to enhance the outcomes of environment and climate change programming. She also guided the team providing support for gender integration across technical portfolios, supported strategic planning for the office and agency level guidance and training for implementation of the Gender Equality and Female Empowerment policy.
Prior to joining USAID at the end of 2009, Elwell was the Associate Vice President for Gender Equity at World Neighbors where she served as a technical advisor to field teams in 18 countries throughout Africa, Asia and LAC, designing their gender approach and building local capacity to integrate gender into long-term rural community development programs. Additionally, she supported action learning and documentation, strategic planning and advocacy efforts for endogenous development.
Elwell also spent a number of years managing professional development programs for women NGO/CBO leaders and in refugee resettlement in the U.S. She served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Moldova from 1994 to 1996, where she taught English and environmental education. Her work on gender issues began in Moldova where she initiated and facilitated a “women in development” group. Natalie is a founding board member of Groundswell International, a partnership of local NGOs and resource people in Africa, Asia and LAC working to strengthen rural communities to build healthy farming and food systems from the bottom up.
Elwell earned an MA in Sustainable Development from the SIT Graduate Institute in Vermont.