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Leah Pollack

Supports federal agencies, state and local governments, and foundations to improve behavioral health and education outcomes in the United States

Leah is a leader in our Public & Social Sector Practice where she supports clients in addressing the mental health crisis affecting youth and young adults coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic. She has worked with a range of federal agencies, state and local governments, and foundations on post-COVID-19 recovery strategy and transformation efforts.

Examples of Leah’s recent projects include the following:

  • leading a behavioral health transformation for a US state improving access to behavioral healthcare for more than eight million citizens
  • managing a nationwide COVID-19 recovery effort regarding learning recovery and youth mental health in K–12 education that impacted more than 23 million students in over 20 school systems
  • developing a coalition strategy for more than 40 not-for-profit organizations and foundations in K–12 education to address COVID-19 learning recovery and mental health
  • creating a workforce-resilience effort with a federal agency using advanced analytics to identify opportunities to identify and assist at-risk employees
  • leading a strategy and transformation engagement with a $15 billion federal agency impacting over 65,000 employees

Before joining McKinsey, Leah worked in the federal government. She is a “mental health champion,” having completed the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health’s executive education program on scaling mental healthcare services. Leah serves on the board of directors of Wild Ones, a national not for profit.

Published Work

COVID-19 learning delay and recovery: Where do US states stand?,” McKinsey & Company, January 2023

Reopening national economies: What five countries have done,” McKinsey & Company, June 2020

Using a crisis nerve center to help reopen the economy,” McKinsey & Company, May 2020

Winning the (local) COVID-19 war,” McKinsey & Company, April 2020

Crisis nerve centers: supporting governments’ responses to coronavirus,” McKinsey & Company, March 2020


Harvard Kennedy School

The Wharton School, the University of Pennsylvania

Stanford University
BA, international relations and feminist studies