Andrew Wilkes

Andrew Wilkes

National Director of Policy and Advocacy, Generation Citizen

Andrew Wilkes serves as Generation Citizen’s Director of Policy and Advocacy, where he leads GC’s thought leadership, coalition building, and policy initiatives as a part of the national leadership team. Andrew comes to this role with nearly ten years of experience in public policy, advocacy, and community organizing, particularly among congregations and community-based organizations.

Prior to joining GC in 2017, he served as the executive director of the Drum Major Institute, a social change organization founded by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. In that capacity, he executed public affairs events in Dallas, TX and Washington D.C. to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act; established the Beloved Community Initiative, a national resource on spirituality and social justice for faith communities; and relaunched the nationally renowned Marketplace of Ideas Forum – a forum for bringing policy ideas to an audience of changemakers, policy professionals, and nonprofit leaders.

As a Senior Grants Manager at The American Red Cross of Greater New York, he worked with elected officials, public agencies, and community stakeholders to administer a $45 million budget for Superstorm Sandy recovery in New York state and Connecticut. Before that, he worked at Habitat for Humanity – New York City, where he mobilized 140 faith communities across the city to serve, donate, and advocate for affordable housing.

Andrew is a graduate of Hampton University, Princeton Theological Seminary, the CORO public affairs fellowship, and is a doctoral candidate in political science at the Graduate Center, City University of New York. He also serves on the board of directors for the Labor-Religion Coalition of New York State and Habitat for Humanity – New York State.

Why do you believe innovations in participatory democracy are important?

They ensure that people have a sense of agency and power in not just responding to policy choices, but in shaping them.

 

What do you hope to see at the 2018 Innovations in Participatory Democracy Conference?

I hope to see educators, activists, elected officials, nonprofit leaders, young people, and others committed to participatory democracy.