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Elizabeth Lewis

Regional Deputy Director, Africa Division

Elizabeth Lewis is IRI’s regional deputy director for Africa. In this role, she oversees nine field offices and the implementation of political party, legislative strengthening, local governance, elections, conflict mitigation and civil society programs in Burundi, the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana, Kenya, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, São Tomé and Príncipe, Somalia/Somaliland, South Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe.

In 2018, Lewis testified before Congress on the upcoming Zimbabwe elections. 

Since 2009, Lewis has managed IRI programs in sub-Saharan Africa, specializing in the Horn and Southern Africa regions. From 2012 to 2015, Lewis served as a monitoring and evaluation (M&E) specialist with IRI’s Office of Monitoring and Evaluation where she provided technical support to IRI programs throughout the program lifecycle, including in program design; building and implementing M&E systems; reporting; and program evaluation and learning.  Lewis conducted internal evaluations of IRI programs, including in Colombia, Indonesia, Kenya, Peru, South Sudan and Ukraine. She also led M&E capacity building efforts with IRI staff and partners. In 2013, she co-lead a needs assessment mission that included data collection in five countries and with multi-sector stakeholders to inform a Strategy for International Democratization Support to Somaliland. Lewis observed Tunisia’s December 2014 presidential run-off election and Nigeria’s March 2015 general election.

Prior to joining IRI in 2007, Lewis was active in grassroots politics, working on numerous national, state and local campaigns. She led the state-wide youth effort for Maryland’s 2006 mid-term elections as chair of the Maryland College Republicans and produced a documentary chronicling a Maryland senate race that was featured on Maryland Public Television. She is a graduate of the Women’s Campaign School at Yale University and completed coursework in George Washington University’s Graduate School of Political Management.

Lewis has a BA in Political Science and Economics from St. Mary’s College of Maryland, and an MSc in Political Economy of Late Development from the London School of Economics and Political Science.