Estelle Willie is a seasoned communicator who brings over a decade of experience raising global awareness of urgent social issues that influences opinion, generates media attention, mobilizes support, and drives action. Estelle joined The Rockefeller Foundation in 2019 as Director of Program Influence, where she develops influence strategies that combine behavior change, communications, advocacy, policy, and campaigns to advance programmatic strategies for the foundation’s Health and Food initiatives. Most recently, Estelle led the launches of the Precision Public Health initiative and the Food System Vision Prize 2050.
Estelle has extensive U.S. and international experience working closely with leading organizations, governments, and foundations, including the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Merck/MSD, UNAIDS, Craig Newmark Philanthropies, and IBM Foundation. Prior to joining the Foundation, Estelle served as Vice President of Social Impact at Weber Shandwick, where she designed strategies and creative campaigns for purpose-driven organizations. In this role, Estelle served as the communications advisor to Craig Newmark Philanthropies, the foundation created by craigslist founder Craig Newmark to advance people and organizations driving civic engagement, and the HIV franchise communications lead for Merck/MSD, helping to launch a global HIV campaign in partnership with Prevention Access Campaign.
Previously, Estelle worked as a communications consultant for the CDC to raise awareness of HIV and STD prevention, comprehensive sex education, TB and viral hepatitis elimination, and LGBT health. She started her career as a health fellow on Capitol Hill for Representative Jim McDermott (D-WA) and has held fellowships and internships at leading health organizations including Kaiser Permanente Northern California, American Diabetes Association, and the National Breast Cancer Foundation.
Estelle earned a Master of Public Health in Health Policy and a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology from The George Washington University in Washington, DC.