Strada collaborates with students, policymakers, educators, and employers across the U.S. to strengthen the link between education and opportunity.
We prioritize policies, practices, and programs that help ensure postsecondary education provides equitable pathways to opportunity.
We advance our mission through research, grantmaking, social impact investments, public policy solutions, Strada-supported nonprofit organizations, and strategic initiatives.
Gabriella Gómez is an accomplished executive with decades of experience shaping and advocating for policy changes at the federal level. As the executive vice president for policy, advocacy, and communications at Strada, Gómez leads the public policy development, state and federal advocacy, and strategic communications teams. She collaborates with state and federal policymakers and partners to help craft and advocate for policy solutions for postsecondary education and training that provide equitable pathways to opportunity.
Gómez's personal and professional journey closely aligns with Strada's mission. As a first-generation college student who received Pell Grant assistance, Gómez earned her Bachelor of Arts in political science from Loyola Marymount University. A fellowship from the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute helped launch her career in federal education policy, first as a staff member for the Senate Education Committee, then with the White House Initiative for Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans. Gómez also worked as a legislative assistant in the U.S. House of Representatives, before enrolling in Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education, from which she earned a master’s degree in education policy.
After graduate school, Gómez worked as a governmental affairs leader for the American Federation of Teachers. She then returned to the Hill as a higher education advisor for the chairman of the House Committee for Education and Labor, and helped lead the effort to reauthorize the Higher Education Act. Gómez also led both the offices of Congressional Affairs and Budget and Policy in the U.S. Department of Education.
Before joining Strada, Gómez served as deputy director for policy and finance, U.S. program policy and communications, at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, where she oversaw the foundation’s policy agenda for U.S. education programs. Gómez's team developed a policy framework that covered all of the foundation’s education strategies in the U.S., from pre-K through postsecondary education and workforce development, including policies related to funding and economic mobility. As part of that work, she spearheaded an initiative to simplify the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as a way to remove barriers to education access and support the success of lower-income students.
Gómez's work has been recognized with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute’s Medallion of Excellence for a Distinguished Alumnus, as well as the Loyola Marymount Latino Alumni Association’s Alumni Role Model Award. She also has served on the board of Hispanics in Philanthropy, which helps drive philanthropic resources to strengthen Latino leadership and influence.