Who We AreExecutive Leadership

Back to Executive Leadership

Lisa Ellis Chief Operating Officer

Why I feel passionately about land rights:

With legal rights to land, women and men gain economic and personal empowerment that can transform their lives, their children’s lives, and their communities now and in the future.


Lisa Ellis has more than 20 years of experience in international development, operations, management, and law. She manages Landesa’s operations globally, including seven offices in India, an office in China, and a newly established office in Myanmar. She is a uniquely skilled senior executive with strategic planning, program operations, and management expertise spanning across 3 continents and 24 countries. Before joining Landesa, Ellis served as Chief Operating Officer for Equal Access where she led global operations and established new partnerships. She also held senior management positions with Room to Read, Habitat for Humanity International, and the Peace Corps program.


  • J.D., Georgetown University Law Center
  • B.A., Economics, University of California Los Angeles

International Experience:

  • Afghanistan
  • Burkina Faso
  • Cambodia
  • Cameroon
  • Chad
  • Cote d’Ivoire
  • Democratic Republic of Congo
  • Gambia

  • Ghana
  • Guatemala
  • Guinea
  • Haiti
  • Indonesia
  • Kenya
  • Laos
  • Madagascar
  • Nepal
  • Niger
  • Nigeria
  • Senegal
  • South Africa
  • Sri Lanka
  • Tanzania
  • Uganda
  • Zambia


  • English
  • French