As policy director of the Annenberg Foundation Trust at Sunnylands, Jeffrey Phillips oversees Sunnylands’ activities that fall within the Trust’s primary areas of focus, including US-China relations, global cooperation, and strengthening democratic institutions. He identifies and builds relationships with partner organizations, and strategically designs results-oriented programs that convene thought leaders and influencers to find solutions to pressing domestic and global challenges. In addition, Phillips is charged with designing and implementing the Trust’s evaluations program.
Prior to joining Sunnylands, Phillips held various leadership positions with the International Republican Institute (IRI), a nonprofit dedicated to advancing democracy and good governance around the world. Phillips spent nearly three years based in Hong Kong directing IRI’s China programs and other activities in Asia. Upon his return to Washington, DC, Phillips served as deputy director of IRI’s Asia Division. He was also IRI’s congressional and government affairs director, leading IRI’s outreach strategy to Capitol Hill and other governmental stakeholders.
Prior to his tenure at IRI, Phillips worked for nearly four years as a legislative aide to former Senator Mark Kirk. Phillips earned a master’s in International Relations and Economics from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of Michigan. He completed an internship at the United Nations Development Programme in Bogotá, Colombia and currently serves on the board of directors of Village Focus International, a nonprofit organization headquartered in Vientiane, Laos with the mission to eradicate poverty, strengthen land rights, and end human trafficking.