Executive Vice President, Policy
Expertise: Early childhood policy, economy, education, federal budget, higher education, poverty, progressive movement, religion and values, women’s rights
Carmel Martin is the Executive Vice President for Policy at American Progress. She manages policy across issue areas and is a key member of CAP’s executive team.
Before joining American Progress, Martin was the assistant secretary for planning, evaluation, and policy development at the Department of Education. In this position, she led the Department’s policy and budget development activities and served as a senior advisor to Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.
Prior to coming to the Department of Education, Martin served as general counsel and deputy staff director for the late Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-MA) as chairman of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. She also previously worked at American Progress as the Associate Director for Domestic Policy, and in the Senate as chief counsel and senior policy adviser to former Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) and special counsel to former Sen. Tom Daschle (D-SD). Through her years in Congress, she worked on legislation related to education, welfare, health care, and other issues of national importance.
Early in Martin’s career, she worked as a trial attorney for the Civil Rights Division of the Educational Opportunities Section at the Department of Justice, as well as in the private sector as a member of Hogan & Hartson’s education practice. There she counseled and represented school districts and institutions of higher education across the country. She graduated with a J.D. from the University of Texas School of Law and a master’s degree in public affairs from the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs. After graduate school, Martin was a law clerk to the Hon. Thomas M. Reavley, judge in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.
Martin has appeared on PBS, NBC, CNN, and NPR. She was named one of the five women who shape education policy by the National Journal in 2014 and has testified as an expert witness in front of legislative committees.