Judith Browne-Dianis

Co-Director
Advancement Project
Judith Browne-Dianis has an extensive background in civil rights litigation in the areas of voting, education, housing, employment. Dianis has litigated voting rights cases including against the States of Florida, Virginia and Maryland. Through Advancement Project’s Voter Protection Program, she continues to eliminate barriers to voting in advance of Election Day. A prominent media commentator, Dianis makes regular appearances on MSNBC’s Hardball, on PoliticsNation with Rev. Al Sharpton, and on other major news outlets. Dianis is a graduate of Columbia University School of Law and a recipient of the distinguished Skadden Fellowship. She joined Advancement Project at its inception in 1999, after serving as the Managing Attorney in the Washington, D.C. office of the NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund, Inc.

Presentations from Facing Race 2016

Using Organizing and Legal Tactics to Resist the Privatization of Public Schools

In Chicago, 50 public schools were closed in 2013. That same year, 23 schools were closed in Philadelphia. The "education reform" movement has exploded--backed by investors and philanthropists seeking to privatize education by capitalizing on our flawed accountability system and its overreliance on high-stakes testing and evaluations. The result is an explosion of school closures, takeovers, and a surplus of unaccountable charter schools. These "education experiments" are imposed primarily on Black and Brown neighborhoods--that have experienced decades of education disinvestment-- and have led to deep resource disparities and the loss of these important community institutions. Communities are resisting these harmful policies through organizing and legal tactics. This session will feature lawyers and organizers who will share the successes and challenges of these legal and organizing tactics and emphasize the need for sustainable community schools. Panelists will share opportunities to get involved in a unified fight against privatization by targeting federal policymakers. Through an interactive activity or small groups, participants will then be invited to share some of their tactics & brainstorm others -- followed by a Q&A period.

Speakers: Jitu Brown, Judith Browne-Dianis, Natasha Capers, Sharon Smith

Presentations from Facing Race 2014

The Need for a Racial Justice Intervention in Education Reform

This panel of teachers, advocates and education experts will examine the history of the achievement gap. In particular the workshop will cover how it's been used as a justification for privatized school reform efforts and wedging big divisions between communities of color and traditionally liberal education advocates (eg unions, teachers, etc.).

Speakers: Chela Delgado, Judith Browne-Dianis, Hany Khalil, Julianne Hing

Presentations from Facing Race 2012

Now What? Debriefing the Election and Talking Governance

This session features political luminaries reflecting on lessons from the 2012 and the agenda we need to set for policymakers in the coming years. Includes racial dimensions of electoral turnout, voting rights, the economy, immigration and more.

Speakers: Judith Browne-Dianis, Jacqueline Johnson Pata, Kai Wright