Ellen O’Connell has over three decades of experience working in the non-profit sector. She is the President of Sankhara, LLC, a consulting firm specializing in non-profits that work in the conservation and humanitarian aid sectors. In addition, Ellen serves as the President of Ngaren, Inc., a project spearheaded by conservationist, paleontologist and politician Richard E. Leakey to build a museum in the Rift Valley of Kenya that will tell the story of the origins of humankind. She is a Strategic Advisor for the Terra Conservation Initiative and a Board Member of Friends of Wildlife Justice Commission. Ellen was the Executive Director of Tusk USA from 2014 to 2018, where she oversaw conservation projects in 20 countries in Africa. From 1999 to 2014, Ellen served as a Senior Vice President at the International Rescue Committee overseeing programs in 40 countries and 22 cities in the USA. Before that, Ellen was the Associate Executive Director at Covenant House New York from 1991 to 1999 and the Director of Fundraising at Covenant House International from 1989-1991.
She has a degree from Georgetown University (BA 1987), a Masters in Public Administration from NYU (1991) and a Masters Degree in Anthropology from the New School for Social Research (1995) and a certificate in Executive Non-profit management from Columbia University.