Mary Metcalfe worked in teacher education at the Johannesburg College of Education and at the University of the Witwatersrand from 1982 to 1994. In the 1980s, she was involved in the anti-apartheid work of the mass democratic movement in education and after the first democratic elections in 1994 she was appointed as the MEC for Education in Gauteng from 1994-1999. She established the new department of Higher Education and Training as Director General. She is currently the Executive Director of PILO, which has worked in five provinces, focusing on improving curriculum leadership and management as a key driver of improving learning outcomes. She is a Professor of Practice at the University of Johannesburg’s School of Public Management, Governance and Public Policy and a National Planning Commissioner.