Margaret Richards

Learning Consultant

As a Learning Consultant for CommonHealth ACTION, Margaret works across multiple programs to develop and implement learning strategies and educational content. An expert in e-learning, adult learning and instructional design, Margaret helps teams leverage the advantages of online learning to develop content on topics ranging from building workplace inclusivity to affecting systems change. As a teacher, trainer and facilitator, she lends her experience in developing meaningful, effective learning activities to all programs. She also contributes over a decade of monitoring, evaluation and research experience to the CommonHealth ACTION portfolio.

Margaret has run a successful independent consulting business for 14 years. Most of her work prior to joining CommonHealth ACTION in 2017 was in the international development field where she has worked on every continent and across sectors as a learning and evaluation expert, helping over two dozen organizations both teach others and learn about the effectiveness of programs and internal processes. She has also helped organizations and Ministries design online learning strategies. She has developed online and in-person training curricula and materials in the areas of mental health, evaluation, poverty assessment, public engagement, integration of health and economic strengthening services, clean energy entrepreneurship, peacebuilding, health data analysis, mathematics and numerous topics related to economic strengthening of poor, ultra-poor and child-headed households.

Margaret is an expert in monitoring, evaluation and research, having consulted with numerous international organizations on research, survey design and implementation and data analysis. She has also led several meta-analyses on the effectiveness of microfinance and other financial products and services at achieving positive social outcomes and village savings groups for HIV-affected youth. She worked on and later directed the USAID Poverty Assessment Tools project for 11 years, helping USAID and its partners gain a deeper understanding of how poverty differs from community to community, household to household, person to person and how to use that knowledge to support the poorest in meeting their needs.She has facilitated multi-stakeholder working and learning groups focused on extreme poverty and participated in several efforts aimed at strengthening social impacts of the microfinance sector.

Where Margaret thrives is in the intersection of these two spheres of expertise: designing, conducting and analyzing research with the ultimate aim of learning and improving from data.

Early in her career, Margaret worked with several DC- and Maryland-focused organizations. Projects included increasing the STEM school-work pipeline, improving cross-cultural understanding of early childhood educators and caregivers working with immigrant families, and building resilience of young women to reduce teen pregnancy rates.

Margaret has taught English as a Second Language, Mathematics and playwriting at the primary, secondary and collegiate levels in South Korea, the Federated States of Micronesia, and Washington, DC. She has an EDM in international education policy from Harvard and a BA in mathematical sciences and writing seminars from Johns Hopkins.