The Leadership Conference Education Fund Staff

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Wade Henderson
President & CEO

Wade Henderson is the president and CEO of The Leadership Conference Education Fund, founded in 1969 as the education and research arm of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. The Education Fund builds public will for federal, state and local policies and initiatives that promote and protect the civil and human rights of all persons in the United States. Mr. Henderson is also the Joseph L. Rauh, Jr., Professor of Public Interest Law at the David A. Clarke School of Law, University of the District of Columbia. Prior to his role with The Education Fund, Mr. Henderson was the Washington Bureau director of the NAACP. Mr. Henderson is a graduate of Howard University and the Rutgers University School of Law. He is a member of the Bar in the District of Columbia and the United States Supreme Court. Mr. Henderson has received countless awards and honors, including the prestigious Eleanor Roosevelt Award for Human Rights and the Charles Hamilton Houston Medallion of Merit from the Washington Bar Association.


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Karen McGill Lawson
Executive Vice President & COO

Karen McGill Lawson is the executive vice president and COO of The Leadership Conference Education Fund, the education and research arm of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. The Education Fund builds public will for federal, state and local policies and initiatives that promote and protect the civil and human rights of all persons in the United States. She has served on the Ad Council’s Advisory Committee and as an advisor to Family Communications Inc.’s Racism Project, Different and the Same, the Media Center for Children’s Willoughby’s Wonders Project, the Philadelphia Campaign to Promote Inter-group Cooperation, and the National Social Action Commission of Delta Sigma Theta, Inc. Prior to joining The Education Fund and The Leadership Conference, she served as the education monitor for the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. Ms. Lawson holds B.A. and M.A. degrees from Pennsylvania State University and Notre Dame University, respectively. She is married to Warner Lawson, Jr., professor emeritus of law at Howard University. Together they are proud parents of three children and four grandchildren.


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Nancy Zirkin
Executive Vice President & Director of Public Policy

Nancy M. Zirkin is the executive vice president and director of policy at The Leadership Conference Education Fund, the education and research arm of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. The Education Fund builds public will for federal, state and local policies and initiatives that promote and protect the civil and human rights of all persons in the United States. Before coming to The Leadership Conference and The Education Fund, Ms. Zirkin served as director of public policy and government relations for the American Association of University Women (AAUW), a 150,000 member national organization. In addition, Zirkin was appointed to the Woodrow Wilson Center board of directors by President William J. Clinton in 1998, and to the United States Institute of Peace board of directors by President George W Bush in 2008. Nancy is married to Harold Zirkin, an investment adviser in Bethesda, Maryland. They have four children and nine grandchildren.


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Ellen Buchman
Executive Vice President for Field and Communications

Ellen Buchman is executive vice president, field and communications, at The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and The Leadership Conference Education Fund. Ms. Buchman spends much of her time developing strategies for the coalition’s public education and field organizing and outreach campaigns on a number of priority issues, including but not limited to voting rights, education, affirmative action, federal judicial nominations, and other critical issues in the coalition. She leads the organization’s department of field operations in its work to provide and support campaigns in mobilizing, building in-state capacity and partnerships, and program development. This involves working with national, state and local partner organizations in educating and mobilizing their respective members; building coalition-model organizing campaigns at the state/regional level; creating materials and tools that enable The Leadership Conference and The Education Fund’s national, state and local partners to alert and educate their constituencies on federal and related state public policy efforts; and meeting with and speaking to national coalition organizations that work with The Leadership Conference and The Education Fund on issues impacting civil and human rights at the federal, state, and local levels. Further, Ms. Buchman has also authored numerous training materials and an outreach and organizing model for the coalition so that it can effectively engage activists on priority issues in states across the country. She has been a member of the staff of The Leadership Conference and The Education Fund since 2003.


Lisa Donner
Executive Director
Jose Alcoff
Campaign Organizer
Darrell Diggins
Administrative Manager
Alexis Goldstein
Senior Policy Analyst
Amanda Jackson
Organizing and Outreach Manager
Jim Lardner
Communications Director
Virginia Robnett
Payday Campaign Director
Brian Simmonds Marshall
Policy Counsel
Marcus Stanley
Policy Director
Amanda Werner
Arbitration Campaign Manager

Jeff Miller
Vice President for Communications
Laura Gillette
Design Associate
Tyler Lewis
Director of Messaging and Project Management
Patrick McNeil
Digital Communications Associate
Scott Simpson
Director of Media and Campaigns
Alicia Smith
Communications Assistant

Ed Fichter
Vice President for Development
Jamal Chevis
Development Assistant
Joshua Gerras
Development Associate for Program Operations
Lisa Haywood
Director of Membership Services
Mary Anne Walker
Manager for Individual Giving and Development Operations
Vania Iscandari
Carol H. Pitchersky Development Fellow

Anjali Thakur-Mittal
Deputy Director for Field Operations &
Director of Americans for a Fair Chance Project
Jordyn Bussey
Field Associate
Paul-Winston Cange
Field Assistant
Cedric Lawson
Field Manger
Abbey Meller
Field Assistant
Sergio Lopez
Field Manager
Jheanelle Wilkins
Senior Field Manager

Angela M. Lovelace
Vice President for Finance and Administration
Ron Bigler
IT Director
Herlyth Clark
Senior Staff Accountant
Constance Dennard
Finance Associate
Charlene Dillard
Receptionist & Office Coordinator
Charlotte Irving
Finance Associate
Andy Meruvia
IT Manager
Crystal Smith-Hunt
Director of Human Resources & Administration

Gisela Ariza
Policy Analyst
Arielle Atherley
Policy Associate
Emily Chatterjee
Senior Counsel
Sakira Cook
Counsel
Elizabeth King
Senior Policy Analyst and Director of Education Policy
Milan Kumar
Policy Associate
Rob Randhava
Senior Counsel & Senior Policy Analyst
Corrine Yu
Senior Counsel and Managing Policy Director
June Zeitlin
Director of Human Rights Policy