Washington, D.C. — Today the Center for American Progress announced that Buffy Wicks, former national director of Operation Vote for the Obama for America campaign, will join CAP as a Senior Fellow with the Center’s new women’s initiative. In addition to leading CAP to develop and promote policies and ideas that will improve the lives of some 157 million American women and their families, Wicks will work on issues related to the rising coalition in American politics: Latinos, African Americans, Asian Americans, women, and young people, and the issues that animate their concerns.
“We are thrilled to have Buffy lead CAP’s work on issues affecting women around the country,” said Neera Tanden, President and CEO of the Center for American Progress. “Buffy’s experience working tirelessly to ensure that all women, including those working multiple minimum-wage jobs, those facing discrimination in the workplace, and those in search of affordable child care have a voice in the national conversation, will enrich CAP’s work to improve the lives of women and families across the country. In addition to bringing a deep knowledge about how policies actually impact the lives of women and families, Buffy has also been a leader herself. This leadership experience will lend itself greatly to CAP’s work developing ideas to address the stubbornly persistent leadership gap.”
With a long history in grassroots mobilization, political organizing, and civic engagement, Wicks brings years of expertise to Center for American Progress. Prior to being named Senior Fellow, Wicks was a key figure in the Executive Management Team of President Barack Obama’s re-election effort. Serving as the national director of Operation Vote, Wicks spearheaded the campaign’s strategy to communicate with and mobilize key demographic voters, including women, African Americans, Latinos, and the youth. Wicks also worked across multiple departments—including field, digital, earned media, paid media, messaging, political, and analytics—to collaboratively create and implement innovative strategies to engage the campaign’s core base and lead the president to victory.
While serving as deputy director of the White House Office of Public Engagement for President Obama, Wicks was critical figure in communicating the president’s legislative priorities—including health care reforms and financial regulation—to key stakeholders throughout the country. Wicks was also called on by President-elect Obama to lead the Renew American Together initiative, a national call to service during the 2009 presidential transition. Wicks was one of the first people hired by President Obama’s 2008 campaign and served as California field director and Missouri state director, where she helped to develop the national grassroots field strategy for the campaign.
Wicks’s background also includes work in the labor movement, where she fought for better health and wages for disenfranchised workers. A California native, Wicks graduated with a double major in political science and history from the University of Washington.