Addrana Montgomergy

Staff Attorney
Community Development Project
A native New Yorker, Addrana Montgomery is a staff attorney on CDP's Tenants’ Rights team. She has championed local, NYC-wide, national, and global social justice movements, including in South Africa, where she served as an overseas election monitor for that country’s first democratic election. During her clerkship at the Constitutional Court of South Africa, she worked on critical housing and land use cases which continue to inform her advocacy for affordable and decent housing for every New Yorker. Addrana received a B.A. in International Relations/African Studies at Boston University and her law degree at Howard University School of Law.

Presentations from Facing Race 2018

Walk Like We Talk: Transforming Legal Services to Champion Racial Justice

Many organizations profess a commitment to racial justice, but struggle to enact that commitment in concrete, practical ways. Internal conversations about race can be uncomfortable - even in social justice nonprofits that primarily work with clients of color. How can groups that are not yet “racial justice organizations” gain momentum to transform their internal practices, partnerships, and cultures to better support staff of color and people of color-led movements for justice? In this workshop, attorneys from the Community Development Project, a nonprofit legal services provider in New York City, will describe their struggles to shift CDP from a majority-white social justice nonprofit to a majority-people of color entity with racial justice at the core of its mission. We will discuss the core areas of our recent organizational transformation, share concrete strategies, and work with participants to develop action plans to begin to dismantle racial hierarchy within their own organizations. Moving beyond principle to everyday practice, we will acknowledge the sacrifice and struggle that such transformations require, sharing honestly what worked and what didn’t in a frank conversation about our triumphs and pitfalls.

Participants will be invited to reflect on their organization’s internal practices related to hiring and leadership; external practices, including substance of the work, clients and partners; and the culture that defines each organization. We’ll share practical tools and ideas to begin the process of transformation in each of these areas, arming participants with concrete strategies that are needed to advance a vision for racial justice day to day.

Speakers: Adrien Weibgen, Addrana Montgomergy