Principal and Managing Director, Global
Ellen Wilson is the principal and managing director of Burness’ global practice, which includes a branch office in Nairobi, Kenya. She has over two decades of experience providing strategic communications counsel to some 70 global nonprofits working in malaria, tuberculosis and other tropical diseases; agricultural research and hunger, particularly focused on Africa; and climate change and forestry protection. She leads high-impact, media-centered, multi-continent communications campaigns that deliver increased exposure for research and solutions to social issues in developing countries. She has directly carried out communications activities across Europe, as well as in Brazil, China, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, India, Mexico, Nigeria, South Africa and Tanzania.
She has been integrally involved in developing and implementing communications activities in global health for Aeras, American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene,Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Global Health Innovative Technology Fund, Global Health Technologies Coalition,Medicines Patent Pool, Meningitis Vaccine Project (MVP),PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative (MVI) and TB Alliance, among others.
In the area of climate change and agriculture, she has led communications activities for Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security, Ford Foundation, Global Crop Diversity Trust, International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI),International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), Rockefeller Foundation and World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF).
Prior to joining Burness, Ellen worked at a public relations firm that represented Planned Parenthood Federation of America and civil rights organizations. Ellen holds a Bachelor of Arts in political science-international relations from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She lives in Chevy Chase, Maryland with her husband, two sons and her dog, Riley.
Why I'm at Burness
Nonprofit mission with the efficiency of a business
Growing people, growing issues
What Drives You?
Doing things that seem impossible
Cry, The Beloved Country by Alan Paton