Alison Varco joined the Foundation in 2017 as an opportunity to practice philanthropy in her local community. She has served on the Pooled Fund Grant Committee for 4 years, including two as a co-lead, the Impact Assessment Committee, Women’s Leadership Partner Committee, Capacity Building Committee, and, most recently, Advocacy Committee.
Alison has an undergraduate degree in Political Science and Sociology from the University of Washington, a Certificate in Nonprofit Management and a master’s degree in Public Administration from Evans School of Public Policy and Governance. She is currently a Program Officer for Women’s Leadership at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation where she leads a portfolio of grants dedicated to advancing women’s power and influence in the global health sector. In this role, Alison also serves on the Gender Equality Division’s DEI committee, leads her team’s strategy and portfolio related to empowering women leaders, and acts as an internal consultant to teams interesting in advancing women leaders in their sector. Prior to joining the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Alison spent ten years working for local non-profit organizations in both development and program management.
Alison resides in Ballard with her two young kids. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, dancing, and exploring Seattle’s dining scene with friends.