Laurie Adams is the Chief Executive Officer of Women for Women International (WfWI), a leading global organization dedicated to working with women survivors of war. With more than 25 years of experience working in international development and human rights, Ms. Adams is an innovative leader, strategist, and gender rights advocate.
Prior to joining WfWI, Ms. Adams served as the Director of Women’s Rights for Oxfam in the United Kingdom leading communications, fundraising, program development, and advocacy of Oxfam’s women’s rights work. During her tenure, Ms. Adams created high-level partnerships with government leaders and multinational corporations and, under her leadership, Oxfam doubled its financial commitment to women’s rights.
Previously, Ms. Adams managed Oxfam’s country programs in three African regions, where she played a pivotal role transforming the governance and management structure of the confederation. In each role, she was accountable for several hundred staff in up to 11 countries, including countries where WfWI currently works. Ms. Adams joined Oxfam after eight years at ActionAid International leading efforts to measure impact, strengthen learning, and build accountability for over 40 countries.
Ms. Adams’ philanthropic contributions include voluntary board service with emerging non-governmental organizations in South Africa and Brazil. As the chair of the founding board for The Other Foundation in South Africa, Ms. Adams launched a community foundation model to catalyze local philanthropy after securing matching funds from The Atlantic Philanthropies. In addition, she served as a director on the boards of The Forum for the Empowerment of Women in South Africa, and ActionAid Brazil.
Ms. Adams holds a Master’s degree in Public Policy Management from the University of London, a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Women’s Rights from Dartmouth College, and completed the Advanced Management Program at the Harvard Business School.