Amy Hawthorne

Deputy Director for Research (former)


Arab Politics · Authoritarianism · Democratization · Egypt · Human Rights · Tunisia · U.S. Foreign Aid · U.S. Foreign Policy

At POMED, Amy oversaw the research program from 2015 to 2023 as Deputy Director for Research. She also chaired the Working Group on Egypt (a bipartisan group advocating for more principled U.S. policies toward Egypt), and served as a resident expert on Egypt, Arab politics, human rights, and U.S. policy in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). Prior to joining POMED in 2015, Amy held a number of positions in government, NGOs, and think-tanks, including: senior fellow at Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East; senior advisor and Egypt coordinator at the U.S. Department of State during and following the 2011 Arab Spring; founding executive director of the Hollings Center for International Dialogue, an NGO based in Washington and Istanbul; fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace; and senior program officer for MENA at the International Foundation for Electoral Systems.

Amy has testified before Congress, published a number of widely read analyses on Egypt, U.S. policy in MENA, and democracy promotion in the Arab world, and is regularly quoted in the media. For five years, she served on the editorial committee for USAID’s Civil Society Organization Sustainability Index for the Middle East. She graduated with honors in history from Yale University, with a focus on the Middle East, and obtained her MA in modern Middle Eastern studies at the University of Michigan, where she concentrated on Islamic law. Amy has advanced skills in Arabic and has lived and traveled extensively in the Arab world, including as a Fulbright Scholar in Egypt, as well as in Turkey.

Amy Hawthorne In the News