Laurie Emrich earned her Masters degree in International Economics and Modernization Studies at the School for Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University. For over twenty years, she has worked as an independent consultant specializing in health program planning and evaluation, NGO organizational development and sustainability analysis. Her assignments were primarily in Sub Saharan Africa, and in Haiti.
More recently, she has been active in the continuing movement to reform and shift the traditional philanthropic infrastructure from a charity approach to an orientation of systemic change towards justice. In a similar fashion she has worked with individual donors on creating giving plans designed to inspire more generous and effective giving towards a just and sustainable society.
She is a founding board member of the Washington Area Women's Foundation and served for several years on Threshold Foundation's board. Active as an advisor to such NGOs as Changemakers, Grantmakers without Borders, and Be Present, Inc.; she is also a student of social venture investment.