Mara has worked at the nexus of gender justice, business and finance for more than 25 years.
Most recently, she served as Chief Strategy Officer at the Marshall Plan for Moms, a campaign to put mothers at the center of the US’s economic recovery from the global Covid-19 pandemic by removing the barriers that hold women back. Mara was responsible for setting the organization’s strategic direction, developing new programming and leading its flagship initiative on childcare.
Prior to the Marshall Plan for Moms, Mara co-led Oxfam America’s Gender Justice and Inclusion Hub, where she worked to advance women’s economic rights through strategy development, program design, advocacy, fundraising and team management. At Oxfam, she launched and led the Women in Small Enterprise initiative, which includes Oxfam America’s first impact investing fund that focuses on women entrepreneurs in Latin America.
Before joining Oxfam, Mara consulted with the Middle East Investment Initiative to develop a new form of small business insurance to help Palestinian exporters hindered by travel restrictions.
Prior to that she worked at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York as an emerging markets financial sector analyst. She has worked with various international finance and development organizations, including Export-Import Bank of the United States, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation and the World Bank. She has a Master of Business Administration degree from Johns Hopkins University and a master’s degree in Foreign Service from Georgetown University. Mara speaks fluent Latvian.