Michelle Ward-Brent is a senior analyst with RTI’s International Development Group’s Policy, Systems and Governance group, where she manages the Ed-Data II Data for Education Programming / Asia and the Middle East (DEP-AME) contract and the Data for Education Reform Programming in Africa (DERP) contract. From 2008-2013 she led the management of the Girls’ Improved Learning Outcomes (GILO) project in Egypt.
Spanning nearly three decades, her work has supported education reforms, analytic research, policy dialogue, teaching and learning, early grade reading, girls’ education, assessment, and communications technology for large scale, sustainable improvements in educational outcomes. Her field work has included Egypt, Nepal, West Bank, Malawi and South Africa.
Prior to joining RTI in 2004, Ms. Ward-Brent worked with educators, government, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), public media, and donors to expand access and to improve educational quality, domestically and internationally. This work mobilized communities, trained teachers, promoted gender equity, and leveraged public-private sector partnerships. She has also designed and managed programs in basic and secondary education, institutional and economic development, literacy, teacher training, curriculum reform, policy reform, technology, health, advocacy, outreach, and educational media. She served as an adviser for over 12 years to USAID/South Africa and USAID/Egypt, where she negotiated and managed more than $100 million in NGO grants, contracts, and bilateral agreements. She also spearheaded USAID's design, negotiation, and management of $21 million in grants for two of the most successful international Sesame Street co-productions in South Africa and Egypt.