News Release

Brookings Institution announces Elisabeth Donahue as Vice President of Communications and Public Affairs

November 6, 2023

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Brookings Institution is pleased to announce that Elisabeth Donahue has been appointed as Vice President of Communications and Public Affairs. Donahue most recently served as Chief of Staff for the White House Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) under former CEA Chair and incoming president of Brookings Cecilia Rouse.

Prior to joining the CEA, Donahue served the Princeton University community for over 20 years in many capacities. She began as a lecturer and then served as Executive Director of the Future of Children, a journal published by Princeton and the Brookings Institution. Donahue was instrumental in helping Sara McLanahan, then editor-in-chief and senior editors Christina Paxon, Cecilia Rouse, Ron Haskins, and Isabel Sawhill, to build the journal into a useful tool for policy makers, practitioners, and professors, and enabling them to bring to light important policy issues facing children.

In 2010, Donahue assumed the role of Associate Dean for Communications and Public Affairs at Princeton’s School of Public and International Affairs (SPIA), where she revamped the office to ensure that work reached and engaged a broad range of critical stakeholders. To do that, she sought cross-cutting opportunities to promote faculty scholarship and worked to bring policy makers to campus on a regular basis.

Earlier in her career, Donahue worked at the National Women’s Law Center where she focused on legislative strategy around welfare reform, including working with those in Congress and the administration, the media, and advocates to communicate likely effects of the proposed law.

“With thirty years of strategic communications experience, a through-line of Elisabeth’s career has been promoting ideas and scholarship that help shape public policy,” said Brookings interim president Amy Liu. “Whether through communications strategy, policy education, or teaching, she has sought ways to make important ideas accessible to broad audiences. We are delighted to welcome her to the Brookings community.”

Donahue holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Brown University. She earned her Juris Doctor degree at Georgetown University Law Center.

“I am excited to join Brookings. I have such respect for the scholarship produced at the institution and am looking forward to working with this talented community,” said Donahue.

Donahue will start on January 1, 2024.

About Brookings

The Brookings Institution is a nonprofit organization based in Washington, D.C. Our mission is to conduct in-depth, nonpartisan research to improve policy and governance at local, national, and global levels.