Jennifer Paige Holt is the CEO of Building Markets. She joined the organization in Afghanistan in 2006, and began her leadership role in 2007, as Deputy Executive Director. From 2007-2012, Jennifer nurtured the organization’s growth, launching and leading Building Markets’ US office while managing its rapid programmatic scale in Afghanistan, Timor-Leste, Haiti and Liberia. Jennifer also oversaw the production of the United Nations' first field guide for the start-up and management of new peace operations and led more than half a dozen studies on the local economic impact of international aid spending.
Jennifer’s passion for international development galvanized during her work with the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation’s Forced Migration Program (2000-2005), which was instrumental in bringing health and education services to refugee populations throughout the world as well as strengthening institutions and research in the field. Jennifer holds a Masters degree in International Social Work from Columbia University and has spoken on the subjects of aid effectiveness and private sector development at Oxford University, the Council on Foreign Relations, the UN, the Geneva Centre for Security Policy and NATO.