Washington, D.C. — Today, the Center for American Progress announced that Nicole Lee Ndumele will be its new vice president of Racial Equity and Justice. In this role, Ndumele will lead the organization’s cross-cutting work to advance bold, large-scale policy solutions, from the economy to the education and justice systems, that meet the long-standing challenge of racial injustice and seize the current opportunity to build a better America where all Americans have an equal opportunity to thrive.
Ndumele comes to CAP with broad expertise in racial justice, criminal justice, anti-poverty, and pro-democracy work. She has extensive experience working within government, the advocacy community, and in philanthropy to promote racial justice. Most recently, she served as the inaugural director of litigation strategy at Arnold Ventures. There, she led the organization’s efforts to develop a philanthropic investment portfolio leveraging high-impact litigation to foster criminal justice policy reforms. Prior to joining Arnold Ventures, she served in the Civil Rights Division at the U.S. Department of Justice, as both a prosecutor and legislative policy counsel. She’s also served as a state public defender and worked as a counsel at Protect Democracy, where she was responsible for identifying and combating emerging threats to American democracy. Early in her career, she was a Skadden Fellow at the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and a judicial clerk for the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama. Ndumele earned a Juris Doctor at Harvard University and a Bachelor of Arts at Brown University.
“I couldn’t be more excited to welcome Nicole to CAP,” said Mara Rudman, executive vice president for policy at the Center for American Progress. “At this critical moment for the racial justice movement, I am grateful that Nicole will bring her deep personal commitment, as well as her significant policy and legal expertise, to CAP. I look forward to her leadership as she continues her work in advancing policies that will confront systemic racism and build a stronger and more equitable America.”
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