Elisa Westapher

Elisa Westapher

Chief Development & Business Officer

In her role as Chief Development & Business Officer, Elisa Westapher cultivates and strengthens NACSA’s organizational and business partnerships to further our mission and strategic initiatives. These organizational partnerships include working with our board of directors, strategic advisory council, members, and federal policy partners. Elisa also leads our development team to ensure future financial growth and stability through maintaining strong relationships with NACSA’s current donors and creating new relationships aligned to our strategic priorities.

In addition, Elisa heads our consulting division, Nexus at NACSA, which provides authorizers and other education stakeholders with customized services and supports to maximize outcomes for students across the United States. Elisa has extensive and specialized experience in authorizer evaluations, operator due diligence, and projects that focus on the intersection of policy and practice.

Prior to joining NACSA, Elisa practiced law at Holland & Knight, LLP, where she specialized in education and commercial real estate. During her time there, Elisa helped state agencies, charter schools, nonprofits, and ed tech companies structure programs and transactions to achieve their educational goals and maximize flexibility under the law.

Elisa holds a J.D. from Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law and a B.A. in government from Cornell University. Elisa lives in Oak Park, Illinois with her husband, two children, and dog.


Most Recent Posts
NACSA passes the mic to EnTere Ed Collective
As we think about the future of education—especially for kids who look like us—it’s hard not to also reflect on where we’ve come from. Countless folx of color have paved...
Untapped Expertise: Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) as Charter School Authorizers
Today, NACSA and the Progressive Policy Institute (PPI) released a report titled Untapped Expertise: Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) as Charter School Authorizers, calling on policymakers to increase pathways...
The Work is Never Done: NACSA Resources for DEI in Authorizing
In some circles recently, diversity, equity, and inclusion have become taboo words. NACSA, however, stands strong by the idea that a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive authorizing profession will result...