She studied comparative literature at Occidental College, where she developed an interest in documentary film. In 1999, Elliott attended Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism, graduating first in her class.
To a Chilean mother and an American father. In 1995, Elliott worked in Chile and Argentina as a field producer for "La Tierra en que Vivimos," a natural history television program. She then moved to San Francisco to co-direct and write the documentary "It's All Good," exploring the subculture of aggressive inline skaters in Los Angeles and New York City.
Journalism career Elliott joined The Miami Herald as a reporter in 2000, covering crime, courts, immigration and Latin American politics. She left The Miami Herald for The New York Times in May 2003. In December 2013, Elliott published "Invisible Child," a 28,000-word, five-part series for the Times on child homelessness in New York City.
Elliott is currently expanding the series into a book for Random House as an Emerson Fellow at New America Foundation.