Ms. Kelli List Wells is a renowned education leader, innovator, and advocate for transforming education to meet the needs of the evolving workforce and global economy. With a background in Six Sigma, social-emotional training, and extensive leadership development, she has a proven track record of leading strategic planning processes, developing leaders, and fostering collaborative cultures.
Previously, Ms. List Wells served as the Executive Director for Global Education and Skills at the GE Foundation, where she spearheaded a diverse portfolio focused on building education, skills, and training initiatives. Her work reached more than 20,000 teachers and 2.5 million students across over 5,000 PreK-12 public schools globally, resulting in substantial cost savings for school districts exceeding $20 million. Recognizing the growing skills gap, Ms. List Wells expanded her efforts to include higher education institutions and workforce development programs. This led to the creation of the Brilliant Career Labs, pioneering physical and virtual learning experiences that help students explore careers and gain an understanding of the skills required for future jobs. In Boston, MA, she secured the partnership of the National Basketball Association's Boston Celtics, further
enhancing the programs impact.
Ms. List Wells has collaborated extensively with education systems worldwide, including notable cities such as New York City, NY, Stamford, CT, Milwaukee, WI, Atlanta, GA, Boston, MA, and countries like the Philippines, India, and Pakistan. She has worked closely with the United States Department of Education, briefing the department on her initiatives at the request of Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. Recognizing the importance of collaboration in education, Ms. List Wells authored influential works such as "The Heart of Reform" and "The Framework for Education Reform".; Her expertise and contributions to education have earned her invitations to prestigious events, including the NEA National Conference, where she was recognized for her support of education and educators nationwide. She was also chosen as the business U.S. delegate for a global education summit in Amsterdam. In 2018, Ms. List Wells co-founded the STEM Leadership Alliance, a nonprofit organization dedicated to revolutionizing STEM education and shaping the workforce of tomorrow. The organization hosts an annual conference that brings together major STEM organizations, businesses, non-profits, and educational stakeholders to promote integrated STEM teaching and learning. Under her leadership, the STEM Leadership Alliance has reached over 20,000 leaders in STEM education across 50 countries.
Currently, Ms. List Wells serves as the CEO of the STEM Happens Network (SHN), a platform that supports countries, states, districts, and schools in implementing an integrative STEM approach. SHN promotes equity and access while preparing students with the necessary skills for success in their academic journey and beyond. Ms. List Wells is also at the forefront of exploring the role of artificial intelligence in supporting STEM and career pathways, collaborating with leading organizations in the field.
Ms. List Wells holds a degree in International Relations with a minor in Japanese from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She furthered her education at Nanzan University in Nagoya, Japan, where she received a BS in International Relations. Her dedication, expertise, and forward-thinking approach continue to shape the landscape of education and inspire future generations.