Press release

Heather McGhee Joins Demos Board of Trustees

The foundation Heather built continues to drive our work fighting for racial equity and economic justice, and dismantling the overlapping systems of power and control that undermine the vision of an inclusive democracy that enables Black and brown communities.

New York, NY – Today, Demos congratulates Heather McGhee on being named as Trustee Emeritus on Demos’ Board of Trustees. Over the last 18 years with Demos, most recently as Distinguished Senior Fellow from June 2018 - June 2020 and as the organization’s president from 2014 - 2018, Heather has been a tireless and passionate advocate for a just and inclusive multiracial democracy. Demos, which grew in size and reputation under her leadership, is elated to have Heather stay closely connected to the organization and continue to play a guiding role in its work.

“Heather constantly brings fearless clarity, fierce courage and boundless compassion to Demos,” said Demos President K. Sabeel Rahman, who succeeded Heather in October 2018. “As president of Demos, Heather transformed and grew the organization, and I am thrilled that she will be taking her place alongside the other past presidents and founders of Demos as a Board Member Emeritus, helping to guide and support our critical work in the years ahead. The foundation Heather built continues to drive our work fighting for racial equity and economic justice, and dismantling the overlapping systems of power and control that undermine the vision of an inclusive democracy that enables Black and brown communities, in particular, to thrive. Heather’s ongoing leadership serves as a reminder that the crises of this moment are rooted in centuries of systemic exclusion, extraction, and oppression—and compels us to continue to imagine bold, transformative change, and to work with our partners to bring that change about.”

In her two-year role as Distinguished Senior Fellow at Demos, Heather continued to be integral to Demos’ work and public profile. This year, Heather gave her first TED Talk: Racism Has A Cost for Everyone, which boldly tackles the destructive impact that racism and white supremacy have on everyone in the U.S. In the coming months, Heather will be focusing on two new podcasts and her first book, The Sum of Us: What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together, which will be published in February 2021.

“Helping Demos grow over the past nearly two decades has been a joy and a privilege,” Heather McGhee said. “As a go-to think tank for the progressive movement, Demos is advancing bold solutions that can transform our struggling economy and rebuild our broken democracy. I am honored that I can continue to be a part of Demos and its vision for our future at such a critical moment in this country."

Heather McGhee joins Shakeeb Alam, an investor and entrepreneur, Xavier de Souza Briggs, a senior adviser and former program vice president at the Ford Foundation, and Michael D. Tubbs, the mayor of Stockton, California, as the most recent additions to Demos’ board.