Julie Peller

Executive Director, Higher Learning Advocates

Tuesday, June 7
Lunch Plenary | 11:45 AM–1:30 PM



Julie Peller is an experienced professional with a deep background in federal postsecondary education policy, federal budgeting, and professional management. She is recognized as a leader on postsecondary education issues and presents at a variety of forums on topics related to student attainment, federal policy, and student financial aid.  Julie is particularly passionate about ensuring that policies support a postsecondary system that enables all of today’s students, regardless of age, income or background, to succeed and reach their goals.  

Prior to joining Higher Learning Advocates, Julie was Lumina Foundation’s first director of federal policy.  As director, she led the development and advancement of the foundation’s federal policy agenda. Julie joined the foundation in 2013, where she created the foundation’s strategy on federal policy and established the foundation’s Washington, DC office.  

Julie also has significant legislative policy experience.  She served as a senior policy advisor and the deputy staff director for the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Education and Labor.  During congressional career, Julie consistently worked across the political aisle to achieve policy goals and was intimately involved with significant changes to the Higher Education Act, the federal student aid programs, and other higher education issues. Among other issues, she was a leader in the development of the Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act (the student aid provisions of the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 (P.L. 112-152)), the last Higher Education Act reauthorization (the Higher Education Opportunity Act ((P.L. 110-315)), the Ensuring Continued Access to Student Loans Act (P.L. 110-227), and the College Cost Reduction and Access Act (P.L. 110-84).  As such, she holds expertise in Congressional process, budget reconciliation, and the provisions of the Higher Education Act. Prior to her time working in Congress, Julie was a Presidential Management Fellow, where she served at the Department of Education as a budget analyst for a variety of K-12 programs.  

Julie received her master’s degree in public policy from Georgetown University and earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and public policy from The George Washington University.   She currently lives in Maryland with her husband and two young sons, where she enjoys baking and spending time outside. 

Subscribe For Updates About Horizons 2022