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Donna  Brazile

Donna Brazile

Interim Chair of the Democratic National Committee

Biography

Veteran Democratic political strategist Donna Brazile is an adjunct professor, author, syndicated columnist, television political commentator, former Vice Chair for Civic Engagement and Voter Participation at the Democratic National Committee (DNC), and former chair of the DNC’s Voting Rights Institute. Currently, she is serving as Interim Chair of the Democratic National Committee. Ms. Brazile assumed the role of Interim Chair of the Democratic National Committee shortly before the start of the historic 2016 Democratic National Convention which nominated Secretary Hillary Clinton for President of the United States. Read More >

Ms. Brazile has worked passionately in the rebuilding and recovery efforts in her beloved hometown of New Orleans. Additionally, she loves working with young people, encouraging them to vote, to run for office, and to work within the system to strengthen it. Since 2000, Ms. Brazile has lectured at over 185 colleges and universities across the country on such topics as Inspiring Civility in American Politics, Race Relations in the Age of Obama, Why Diversity Matters, and Women in American Politics.

She 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 swing set was installed, and a lifelong passion for political progress was ignited. Ms. Brazile worked on every presidential campaign from 1976 through 2000, when she became the first African-American to manage a presidential campaign.

In addition to her work as an adjunct professor at Georgetown University, Ms. Brazile is the author of the best-selling memoir Cooking with Grease: Stirring the Pots in American Politics, syndicated newspaper columnist for Universal Uclick, a columnist for Ms. Magazine, a contributor to Essence Magazine's 2016 coverage and O, The Oprah Magazine. She is also an on air contributor to CNN, and ABC, where she regularly appears on the Sunday morning show This Week. She is especially pleased to have made three cameo appearances on CBS’s The Good Wife, and two cameo appearances on Netflix’s series House of Cards. She most recently appeared on BET's Being Mary Jane. Ask her and she’ll tell you that acting, after all, is the key to success in politics.

In 2014, Brazile was appointed by President Obama to serve on to the board of the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board. In addition she serves on the National Democratic Institute, the Professional Diversity Network, the National Institute for Civil Discourse, the BlackAmericaWeb.com Relief Fund, Inc., and as Co-Chair for Democrats for Public Education.

In August 2009, 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. Earlier this year, Ms. Brazile was awarded Wonk of the Year from the Kennedy Political Union at American University.

Ms. Brazile is the proud recipient of honorary doctorate degrees from Louisiana State University, North Carolina A&T State University, Grambling State University, Spellman College, LeMoyne Owen College, Northeastern Illinois University, Morehouse Medical College, Bethune Cookman University, Thomas Jefferson University, and Xavier University of Louisiana, the only historically Black, Catholic institution of higher education in the United States.

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

Last but never least, she is a proud native of New Orleans, Louisiana. In the aftermath of the two catastrophic hurricanes that made landfall in 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. Brazile was recently appointed by New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu to serve on the Tricenntinal Commission. 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