Deborah Willig

With over 20 years of experience in the fields of policy, communications, and international relations, Deborah brings both passion and mental muscle to InterAction.

Always interested in the systems that shape the power dynamics of humanity, Deborah earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and international economics from Vassar College, and a master’s degree in international relations with a focus on business management from the University of California San Diego. Deborah represented the Export-Import Bank of the United States, worked in Congress where she advised on global development and foreign policy, led the FedEx Global Communications team's corporate responsibility issues management and communications strategy, and co-directed the InterAction communications team.

Deborah now directs InterAction's new NGO Futures initiative to revolutionize NGOs' ability to adapt to change in service of their missions. Born from her respect for humanity Deborah believes that, together, we have the power to change the world.



Leadership in a Permanent Crisis: Top Three Takeaways from the NGO Futures Inaugural Workshop

Why is it that even when we know change is important, it is so hard? And how do we change not just ourselves, but a whole institution or a whole sector? U.S. NGOs are facing significant political, economic, environmental, and technological shifts greater than our sector has ever experienced simultaneously. Meaningful and successful efforts by U.S. NGOs to resolve development and humanitarian relief challenges are at risk. While catalyzing technical solutions is important, it is not enough. We must break the habits that may be automating outdated thoughts and actions.

Deborah Willig's picture
Director, NGO Futures
Membership & Public Engagement