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Meet Barbara Merz

Managing Director, Empowerment Funds, United States

Barbara Merz is an experienced senior strategist and development expert. As Pathfinder’s Managing Director of Empowerment Funds, Barbara leads the design and strategy for Women-led Climate Resilience. As part of this initiative, she partners with in-country leadership to deliver rights-based strategies to empower women and respond to our collective climate crisis. Her work is transformative, building partnerships, and growing leadership as well as on-the-ground programming.

Before this role, Barbara was Global Campaign Director at The Nature Conservancy, where she designed and led the $8+ billion global campaign linking nature’s benefits and health. This was the largest environmental campaign ever launched, in which she helped secure resources for global priorities in over 70 countries. Barbara leverages her extensive experience in leading philanthropic efforts to advance human rights, including those of indigenous communities and youth.

Barbara was awarded a Fulbright Fellowship, a Stanford Fellowship in Negotiation and Mediation, and served as a Fellow for The William & Flora Hewlett Foundation. Barbara is a graduate of Stanford Law School. She holds a Master’s degree from Victoria University, and a Bachelor’s degree in International & Public Policy from Princeton University.

Other Staff Members

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