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Lisa Cylar Barrett

Dir. of Federal Policy & Co-Dir. of the Promise Neighborhoods Institute at PolicyLink

Lisa Cylar Barrett collaborates with other PolicyLink staff to develop and execute federal policy and advocacy strategies to advance economic and social equity. Her work focuses on improving access and opportunity for everyone, especially people in low-income communities and communities of color. Additionally, as Co-Director of Promise Neighborhoods Institute (PNI), Lisa leads and manages PNI’s policy efforts to sustain and advance Promise Neighborhoods, including leading the successful effort to have Promise Neighborhoods included in the recent reauthorization of ESEA, thus rendering Promise Neighborhoods a federally authorized program.  Lisa also manages PNI’s relationships with other stakeholder organizations, and manages its day-to-day operations. Having worked in the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors, she has significant experience developing and implementing policy agendas and strategies to influence policymakers, funders, civic leaders, and government officials to align their work in an effort to improve outcomes for children and families. A lawyer by training, Lisa practiced law prior to beginning her career in the philanthropic sector. She holds a BA in English from Spelman College and a JD from Case Western Reserve University School of Law.

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