Read a PDF of our statement here.

Today, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF), announced that Lisa North, an innovative professional with 35 years of experience in the field of social justice and human rights, has been named Chief Operations Officer for the nation’s leading civil rights law organization. While managing an inclusive and effective team, Ms. North will focus on helping LDF thoughtfully but ambitiously expand the impact and scale of its work.

“Throughout her career, Lisa has found new ways to drive organizational effectiveness,” said Janai S. Nelson, LDF President and Director-Counsel. “We are thrilled to have Lisa as part of the team during this pivotal moment in LDF’s history as we continue to solidify a durable foundation for advancing the most critical issues of racial justice, serving Black communities, and protecting our democracy.”

“I could not be more excited to join LDF, an organization I have long admired,” said Ms. North. “In this moment of our history, when U.S. democracy itself is under so much strain and in such desperate need of bold and creative revitalization, I am eager to do all I can to ensure that the organization has the resources and structures it needs to fulfill its mission.”

Prior to joining LDF, Ms. North served as Deputy CEO, Acting CEO, and Chief Operating Officer at The Global Hunger Project. She is also the former Vice President for Institutional Advancement at the Institute for Sustainable Communities, Capital Campaign Director and Grants Director at the American Friends Service Committee, Development Officer at the Foundation Center, and Business Manager at WBAI/Pacifica Radio.

Ms. North holds an MBA from Columbia University and a BA from Mills College. She grew up in Vermont and Germany, has worked and traveled extensively in Africa and Asia, and currently calls New York City her home. She is married and has three grown children.


Founded in 1940, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is the nation’s first civil and human rights law organization. LDF has been completely separate from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) since 1957—although LDF was originally founded by the NAACP and shares its commitment to equal rights. LDF’s Thurgood Marshall Institute is a multi-disciplinary and collaborative hub within LDF that launches targeted campaigns and undertakes innovative research to shape the civil rights narrative. In media attributions, please refer to us as the NAACP Legal Defense Fund or LDF. Follow LDF on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.