President & Founder - Bertha M. Lewis
Bertha Lewis is the President & Founder of The Black Institute which she founded in 2010 to assist with holistically addressing systematic issues faced by Black people and of Color communities in the United States and throughout the Diaspora. Prior to her work with The Black Institute, Ms.Lewis was a life-long community activist and organizer. Bertha's work as a leader has been recognized time and again by several prominent organizations. She was one of ten national recipients of Citizen Activist Award of the Gleitsman Foundation for her work in public education reform. Additionally, Ms. Lewis received the 2005 New York State Black and Puerto Rican Legislators, Inc. Leon Bogues award for community and political activism. Ms. Lewis was also named by Crain's magazine as one of the 100 Most Influential Women of New York in 2007 and was named as an "Influential" in politics by New York Magazine in 2006. Most recently, Ms. Lewis was featured in Essence Magazine's 2011 List of 28 Most Influential Black Women.
Bertha's work has included almost 20 years as an ACORN organizer, a tenure that culminated with her appointment as the CEO and Chief Organizer. In this role Bertha, restructured, reorganized and saw ACORN through a full vindication. For over forty years, ACORN was the largest community organization organizing low and moderate income Americans. Bertha has accumulated invaluable knowledge of the struggles, concerns and hopes of our country's minority population which has created the unique perspective she brings to The Black Institute.
Kira Shepherd - Director of Campaigns & Organizing
Russell Cheek - Manager of Programs & Development
Carolina Minier - Operations Manager