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Dr. Kesha Moore, Research Manager for the Legal Defense Fund’s (LDF) Thurgood Marshall Institute (TMI), has been selected to the second cohort of the Culture of Health Leaders Institute for Racial Healing (CoHLI), a program of the National Collaborative of Health Equity.

Dr. Moore joins 39 other talented leaders from 24 different states around the country as part of this cohort, and the 40 other leaders from the inaugural cohort. After a competitive selection process, individuals were selected for their leadership experiences in the policy, law, grassroots organizations, education, and health fields. The selected leaders will connect with a national community of like-minded people to be nurtured in this work, support and serve as a resource to others, and gain tools to hold public officials and private sector leaders more accountable for real progress.

“This is a well-deserved recognition for Dr. Kesha Moore, who in her tenure at LDF has demonstrated exceptional research and leadership skills and has helped the Thurgood Marshall Institute add additional thought-leadership to issues of racial justice,” said LDF President and Director-Counsel Janai Nelson. “Her research to help separate fact from fiction on the impacts of COVID-19, the criminal legal system, policing, and education in Black communities has provided critical insight on the true and lasting effects of systemic racism.”

“I am honored to be selected to the program alongside other leaders with demonstrated histories working as agents of change towards racial justice,” said Dr. Moore. “I look forward to the opportunity to connect and engage with leaders across various organizations and communities, and to deepen my knowledge and application of the TRHT model to further LDF’s future work.”

Funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, CoHLI is an 18-month leadership experience that uses the Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation™ Framework (TRHT) to strengthen the ecosystem of leaders who are advancing racial and health equity in their work. TRHT is an actionable model designed to bring about transformational and sustainable change that addresses the historic and contemporary effects of racism. Using the framework, leaders will focus work in one of five areas: narrative change, racial healing and relationship building, separation, law, and the economy.

“Throughout her time with the Thurgood Marshall Institute and at LDF, Dr. Moore has done exceptional and standard-setting work,” said Anna Houghtaling, LDF Senior Deputy Director of Strategic Initiatives. “I can think of no scholar and researcher more deserving of this special and valuable opportunity.”

“We are thrilled to welcome 40 more exceptional leaders into our program. I remain optimistic and eager to see how they will envision the kind of transformational change required for our communities to heal and thrive,” said Dr. Gail Christopher, executive director at the National Collaborative for Health Equity. “The selected leaders embody the greatest traits of leadership necessary for today and tomorrow—they’re smart, bold, experienced and determined to end the absurd belief in a hierarchy of human value.”


Founded in 1940, the Legal Defense Fund (LDF) is the nation’s first civil rights law organization. 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 Legal Defense Fund or LDF. Please note that 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.