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Alex Payne

Director of Advocacy

Alex helps advance Arnold Ventures’ higher education quality and accountability goals at the federal and state level for the Advocacy Team. Alex partners with the programmatic team to help develop, identify, and promote high-quality, evidence-based policies that best serve students and families.

Prior to joining Arnold Ventures, Alex was an appointee of President Biden’s Administration where he directed congressional strategy on higher education, workforce development, and nominations for the U.S. Department of Education. Previously, Alex worked for nearly seven years in the U.S. House of Representatives as a legislative assistant for Congressman Rush Holt Jr., a policy advisor for the Committee on Education and the Workforce, and as legislative director for Congresswoman Kim Schrier. Alex also worked for the First Five Years Fund advocating for early learning initiatives and the Partnership for Public Service improving HR practices in the Federal Government. He has two cycles of campaign experience as a staffer with President Obama’s 2012 and 2008 campaigns and started his career as a high school social studies teacher and varsity baseball coach in Eastern North Carolina.

Alex is currently a volunteer at his church in Arlington, VA and Board Member/VP of Scholarships for the Cornell Club of Washington. He attended Cornell University for undergrad, received his MPA from the Maxwell School at Syracuse University, and has a certificate in personal finance and planning with which he dabbles in on the side.

Meet the Team

Advocacy, Communications & External Affairs