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Donna  Brazile

Donna Brazile

Democratic Political Strategist

Biography

Veteran political strategist Donna Brazile has twice served as the interim Chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC). She is the author of the New York Times bestseller Hacks: The Inside Story of the Break-Ins and Breakdowns That Put Donald Trump in the White House and the 2004 best-selling memoir Cooking with Grease: Stirring the Pots in American Politics. She is a co-author of For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Politics, which won the 2019 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work, Nonfiction. Ms. Brazile is a contributor to the recently published 400 Souls: A Community History of African America, 1619-2019Read More >

Ms. Brazile has devoted her life to working for progressive change, responsible governance, and the advancement of all people in a society that is fair and equitable. Brazile first got involved in politics at the age of nine when she worked to elect a City Council candidate who had promised to build a playground in her neighborhood; the candidate won, the playground was built, and a lifelong passion for political progress was ignited. Brazile has worked on every major presidential campaign since 1976 and in 2000 Ms. Brazile became the first Black woman to serve as the manager of a major party presidential campaign, running the campaign of former Vice President Al Gore.

Ms. Brazile and former RNC chair, Michael Steele, were recently appointed by the Bipartisan Policy Center to lead its Election Legitimacy Initiative, a collaboration with public and private sector partners to undertake a nationwide public education campaign to help voters understand their rights, identify nefarious misinformation, help them register, cast ballots, and make sure their votes are accurately counted. Outreach will take place in local and national media outlets through PSAs, podcasts, webinars, and other shareable tools and content.

Ms. Brazile loves working with young people, encouraging them to vote, to run for office, and to work within the system to strengthen it. She has lectured at over 225 colleges and universities across the country on such topics as “Inspiring Civility in American Politics,” “Why Diversity Matters,” and “Women in American Politics.” In 2013, Ms. Brazile was appointed by President Obama to serve on the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board. She is the proud recipient of more than ten honorary doctorate degrees from major colleges and universities, including her alma mater Louisiana State University. In October 2017, Ms. Brazile was the recipient of the W.E.B Du Bois Medal, Harvard’s highest honor in African American studies. Brazile has served as an adjunct professor at Georgetown University since 2002 and spent the fall of 2017 serving as a Joan Shorenstein fellow in Media, Politics and Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School. She currently serves as the Gwendolyn S. and Colbert I. King Endowed Chair in Public Policy at Howard University. In this capacity, she is responsible for developing and hosting a lecture series to engage the Howard community on several subjects, including politics, voting, criminal justice reform and civility.

O, The Oprah Magazine chose Ms. Brazile as one of its 20 “remarkable visionaries” for the magazine’s first-ever O Power List. In addition, she was named among the 100 Most Powerful Women by Washingtonian magazine, Top 50 Women in America by Essence magazine, and received the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s highest award for political achievement. In 2016, Ms. Brazile was awarded Wonk of the Year from the Kennedy Political Union at American University. In March 2018, Black Enterprise awarded Ms. Brazile with the Barbara Graves Legacy Award.

Ms. Brazile has worked passionately on behalf of her beloved hometown of New Orleans. In the aftermath of the two catastrophic hurricanes that devastated the Gulf region, Ms. Brazile was appointed by former Governor Kathleen Blanco to serve on the Louisiana Recovery Board to work for the rebuilding of the state and to advocate for the Gulf recovery on the national stage. Ms. Brazile was also appointed by New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu to serve on the Tricentennial Commission.

Ms. Brazile is currently an ABC News Contributor and was formerly a contributor to FOX News and CNN. Ms. Brazile was the recipient of a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Daytime Program, Good Morning America (2016-2017) in connection with her work with ABC and she was a member of the Peabody Award-winning “Best Political Team on Television” on CNN during the 2008 election cycle.

She is a member of the USA Today Opinion Board of Contributors and was formerly a syndicated newspaper columnist for Universal U’Click. She is a prolific writer and has had articles published in nearly every major newspaper in the nation. She moonlights as an actress and is especially honored to have made three cameo appearances on CBS’s The Good Wife, and two cameo appearances on Netflix’s series House of Cards. She also appeared as herself on BET's Being Mary Jane. Most recently she played herself in the Zack Snyder film Army of the Dead. Ask her and she’ll tell you that acting, after all, is the key to success in politics.

Ms. Brazile is the founder and director of Brazile & Associates LLC, a general consulting, grassroots advocacy, and training firm based in Washington, DC. Read Less ^

Speech Topics

Presidential Politics: What Happened to "We the People”?

What Did We Do to Deserve This? The Voter’s Perspective on the Fall Campaign

Truth to Power: A Youth Guide to Civic Engagement

The Shifting American Political Landscape