Liz McNamee
Senior Associate Partner
Strategic Advising


Liz McNamee is a senior associate partner with Bellwether in the Strategic Advising practice area. Liz has 17 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 including the Robin Hood Foundation and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. At Bellwether, Liz has led strategic planning projects with a range of clients including statewide intermediary organizations, local and national funders, school districts, charter networks, and student-serving nonprofits. Liz has especially deep experience in Bellwether’s work in postsecondary access/success, personalized learning pathways, growth planning, and effective financial management.

Previously, 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. Earlier in her career, 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

Contact Information

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We’ve partnered with a diverse group of equity-focused clients, from large-scale foundations, to school districts, to nonprofits and mission-drive companies, and more. Let’s transform education together.
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