Susan K. Urahn
Executive Vice President, The Pew Charitable Trusts
As executive vice president, Susan Urahn leads efforts at The Pew Charitable Trusts to help states identify and implement policies that are fiscally sound, provide a return on investment to taxpayers and, more than ever, help our nation tackle its toughest challenges.
States face great difficulties in this time of rapid economic change and historic budget shortfalls. Pew’s state work brings an in-depth, 50-state point of view and employs a unique, evidence driven process to identify innovative policies and determine which work and which do not. When the facts are clear, the Pew Center on the States and its diverse group of partners initiate nonpartisan issue campaigns advocating for reforms in areas including elections, corrections, pre-k, children’s dental health, and home-based programs for new and expectant families. These campaigns are resulting in significant changes to public policy, increasing benefits to taxpayers and better lives for millions of people.
Since 2007, Pew has released over twenty 50-state reports on pressing issues including the clean energy economy, corrections costs and populations, pension obligations, the foreclosure crisis and access to quality pre-kindergarten. In the last two years, it has hosted events including, “Grading the States 2008,” where state leaders discussed government performance, and “Democracy at a Distance” and “Voting in America: The Road Ahead,” where leading election officials planned fixes to military and overseas balloting and other voting reforms.
Ms. Urahn joined The Pew Charitable Trusts in 1994. After becoming director of Pew’s education program in 2000, her portfolio steadily expanded to include a wide range of state policy initiatives. In 2007, she was tapped to build and lead the Pew Center on the States. She came to Pew with more than a decade of experience in policy research and educational evaluation with the Minnesota House of Representatives and at the University of Minnesota.
She has testified before the U.S. Congress and multiple state legislatures, and has been a featured speaker at conferences of the Public Policy Institute of California, National Conference of State Legislatures, National Conference of State Courts and the Philanthropy Roundtable.
She has appeared on major media outlets including PBS, CNN, Bloomberg News, CSPAN and National Public Radio, and has been quoted in The Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, New York Times, Washington Post and other leading publications.
Ms. Urahn holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology and a doctorate in education policy and administration from the University of Minnesota.
- Sheila L. Brown, Executive Assistant, Finance, Real Estate Services and Treasurer
- Janice Bogash, Senior Vice President, Human Resources, Institutional Solutions and the Executive Office