Center for Financial Inclusion
Elisabeth Rhyne works to bring together leaders in financial services to address challenges facing the microfinance industry today. She is a co-creator of the Smart Campaign for client protection in microfinance. As senior vice president of Accion from 2000-2008, Ms. Rhyne led Accion’s initial entry into Africa and India, directed the organization’s research efforts to develop new financial products, and managed Accion’s publications and educational activities.
Ms. Rhyne has published numerous articles and five books on microfinance, including Mainstreaming Microfinance: How Lending to the Poor Began, Grew and Came of Age in Bolivia (Kumarian Press, 2001). She was also co-editor of The New World of Microenterprise Finance (Kumarian, 1994), which provided the introduction to microfinance for many of the field’s current professionals. Her most recent book, Microfinance for Bankers and Investors, was published by McGraw-Hill in 2009.
Ms. Rhyne was director of the Office of Microenterprise Development at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) from 1994 to 1998, where she developed and led USAID’s Microenterprise Initiative. Ms. Rhyne’s experience includes eight years living in Kenya and Mozambique, consulting on microfinance policy and operations for governments, international organizations, and microfinance institutions.
Ms. Rhyne holds a master’s degree and Ph.D. in public policy from Harvard University. She earned a bachelor’s degree in history and humanities from Stanford University.