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Elizabeth Shappell Lattanner , B.A. ’07

Published: March 13, 2013

Author: Renée LaReau

After spending over a decade in political communications, Elizabeth "Lizzi" Shappell Lattaner's career path has led her to a new role in strategic communications consultant with Portland General Electric. When she decided to search for careers beyond governmental sectors, Lizzi sought out private sector companies whose values aligned with her own. 

"PGE is focused on doing its part to build a clean energy future. In my position, I get to work with the community impact, transportation electrification and government affairs teams, providing me the opportunity to engage on issues like climate justice and electric vehicle adoption," said Lizzi. 

Prior to taking on this new role, Lizzi served as deputy communications director for U.S. Senate Democratic Leader, Chuck Schumer (D-New York). 

She graduated from Notre Dame magna cum laude with majors in political science and peace studies. As an undergraduate, Lizzi's interest in international development led her to a Catholic Relief Services internship in Honduras and a senior thesis focusing on women in Afghanistan. After graduation, she taught mathematics in Jinja, Uganda.

Lizzi, who served as Notre Dame student body president during her senior year, says the challenges of her peace studies education prepared her well for prominent communications roles from Capitol Hill to the private sector and beyond. 

"I learned from peace studies the importance of clear communication, no matter the setting," Lizzi said. "Confronting language barriers, navigating the often complex international development world, and conducting extensive research on Afghanistan helped me gain valuable communication skills I now use every day."

Listen to Lizzi discuss the importance of networking in any career search: