Melissa Chabran is a Program Officer in Education at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. Her portfolio includes a K-12 teaching and learning grantmaking strategy centered around equity and the intersection of the deeper learning and open educational resources strategies, with the aim of creating inclusive, purposeful, and coherent learning experiences for students and teachers.
Melissa has worked in the education field for 26 years, spanning program, research, policy, and philanthropy. Prior to joining the Hewlett Foundation, Melissa served as Managing Director of the Networked Improvement Science team at the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. There, she led a team supporting organizations launching networked improvement communities and those engaged in working on various problems of practice. Before joining Carnegie, Melissa worked as a senior consultant at Education First, supporting organizations to improve teacher and student support models, college readiness efforts, and to make grantmaking more effective. Melissa also served as a senior program officer at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, where she led investments in classroom- and curriculum-embedded assessment in literacy and mathematics and led specific strategic and programmatic work to support English learners. Previously, Melissa spent time working in youth development across Northern California and with local districts. She has served as the legislative analyst for the San Francisco Unified School District and as a consultant for the Long Beach Unified School District. She also worked as a researcher for Harvard University on various high school reform studies. Earlier in her career, Melissa served several years at the U.S. Department of Education in the Under Secretary Office’s Planning and Evaluation Service, developing and managing federal policy initiatives and the research and evaluation of federal programs.
Melissa holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Whittier College, a master’s degree in public affairs from the University of Texas, Austin, and a doctorate in education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She serves on an advisory board of the English Learners Success Forum, which equips educators and content developers to help English Learners succeed. She also volunteers with the Greene Scholars Program, which centers STEM enrichment and Learning, and is a member of Jack and Jill of America, an African American leadership organization. She enjoys dance, movement, mindfulness practice, and spending time with her two children and family.