Valerie Threlfall

Director, West Coast Office,
Center for Effective Philanthropy

Valerie Threlfall is the director of The Center for Effective Philanthropy’s San Francisco office and the director of the YouthTruth project, which is one of the first foundation-led efforts to gather and analyze comparative feedback from high school students — the ultimate beneficiaries of school improvement efforts. YouthTruth was developed and piloted in 2008 in collaboration with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. To date, more than 90 schools representing 12 districts and educational networks have participated in YouthTruth. YouthTruth draws on CEP’s nine years of experience developing large-scale, comparative surveys and providing results to more than 200 foundations, including eight of the largest 10 in the U.S.

Prior to joining CEP in March 2008, Ms. Threlfall was a non-profit strategy consultant, working with organizations such as Global Giving, Partners in Health, and the Monitor Institute. She also spent five years at Momenta Pharmaceuticals, a start-up biotechnology company. Her last position at Momenta was a combined role as director of commercial and strategic planning and as director of public policy, leading efforts to get generic biologics legislation passed by Congress. Ms. Threlfall’s non-profit experience includes working at Opportunity Finance Network, a national association of community development financial institutions, where she published multiple papers on theory of change planning and creating effective impact measurement systems. She holds a joint MBA and MPP from Northwestern’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management and Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, respectively. She has a BA in Economics from Swarthmore College and is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa Society.