Brenda Dann-Messier

Senior Advisor

Brenda Dann-Messier worked at ESG from 2015 -2017 as a Senior Advisor and Coach for the NSFY Initiative and has returned to ESG as a Senior Advisor. In 2017 Brenda was appointed Rhode Island’s Postsecondary Commissioner and worked as Commissioner until May 2019.

Brenda worked for the Obama administration from 2009-2014 as the Assistant Secretary for Career, Technical and Adult Education and from 2013-2014 was also the Acting Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education. Prior her time at the U.S. Department of Education, Brenda was the President of Dorcas Place Adult and Family Learning Center for a decade and directed two TRIO programs at the Community College of RI.

Brenda is a Board member of the National Skills Coalition, RI’s Commerce Corporation, the Re-Entry Campus Program and a Trustee of Johnson and Wales University. She holds an Ed. D from Johnson and Wales University and a M.Ed. and BA from Rhode Island College.

Why are you in this work?

I have worked my entire career expanding educational opportunities for low income youth and adults with a special focus on low skilled adults, CTE students, the incarcerated, immigrants and students of color.  I am pleased to be able to continue this work for an organization that is focused on forming effective partnerships across systems, eliminating equity gaps and providing high quality educational opportunities for all students.

Why ESG?

I rejoined ESG because I am passionate about the mission of the organization, and the impactful, high-quality and important work being done by the ESG team throughout the country.

Connect with Brenda

Make contact by email.