Lisa Szarkowski is Vice President, Humanitarian Emergencies and Executive Communications for UNICEF USA.
She leads the development of the organization’s public advocacy agenda for the rights, protection and survival of children in accordance with UNICEF’s mission. She serves as communications strategist and spokesperson for the President and CEO and holds an elected position on the UNICEF global communications working group. Lisa is focal point for Marketing & Communications strategy on several interdepartmental initiatives including The Eliminate Project, End Trafficking, and the Social Media Task Force. She is also responsible for the development and implementation of the organization’s Social Media policy, guidelines and integration.
In 2000, Lisa co-created the organization’s humanitarian disaster response protocols for marketing, fundraising and communications. She has since lead UNICEF USA’s emergency response team through major disasters such as the 2004 South Asia tsunami and the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, and continues to serve as its leader through ongoing crises like the Horn of Africa and Sahel.
From 2007-2011, Lisa was Vice President of Public Relations, responsible for managing the organization’s media and celebrity relations departments and serving on its core rebranding and repositioning team. Prior to that, she served as Managing Director of Public Relations, Director of Public Relations and Deputy Director of Media Relations.
Before joining UNICEF USA in 1999, Lisa held posts with the U.S. House of Representatives Appropriations Committee, the AFL-CIO Headquarters, and spent 7 years with an independent Public Relations agency specializing in public health, diplomatic corps, political campaigns and Fortune 100 businesses.
A UNICEF-themed essay authored by Ms. Szarkowski was published in “How to Achieve a Heaven on Earth: 101 Insightful Essays from The World’s Greatest Thinkers, Leaders and Writers” (Pelican, January, 2010). She is also featured with UNICEF USA in “Breakthrough Nonprofit Branding: Seven Principles for Powering Extraordinary Results” (Wiley, October 25, 2010).
Lisa is a graduate of Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts. She is a lifelong advocate and volunteer for children’s rights.