Chief External Affairs Officer
Leila works with our team, member chiefs, and external partners to develop and implement our advocacy and policy agenda. A communications strategist with experience leading public affairs initiatives in education and a range of other policy areas, Leila joined Chiefs for Change after serving as vice president of communications at the Laura and John Arnold Foundation, now Arnold Ventures. During her five years at the foundation, she was responsible for overseeing internal and external communications, including media relations. Leila built a strategic communications department that collaborated with the foundation’s research and policy experts to engage stakeholders, build consensus, and drive reform. Prior to her work at the foundation, she served as senior manager in the Office of Communications at the Houston Independent School District. She managed some of the district’s most important communications efforts and provided editorial direction across multiple platforms. Leila began her career as a radio and television news reporter and spent 13 years reporting in San Antonio, Texas, and Upstate New York. She has a bachelor’s in political science and broadcast journalism from Syracuse University.