About Nicole

headshotagainC. Nicole Mason is the author of Born Bright: A Young Girl’s Journey from Nothing to Something in America (St. Martin’s Press) and has written hundreds of articles on community development, poverty, and economic security. Her writing and commentary have been featured in the New York Times, MSNBC, CNN, NBC, CBS, Real Clear Politics, the Nation, the Washington Post, Marie Claire Magazine, the Progressive, ESSENCE Magazine, Bustle, BIG THINK, the Miami Herald, Democracy Now, and numerous NPR affiliates, among others.

C. Nicole Mason, PhD is a Visiting Scholar at the Center for Public & Nonprofit Leadership and Professorial Lecturer in the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies at Georgetown University. She is also the Executive Director of the Center for Research and Policy in the Public Interest at the New York Women’s Foundation. At the Foundation, she heads up research focused on poverty and women’s economic security and a leadership initiative focused on women of color in the social sector—Lead the Way.

Over the past two decades, Dr. Mason’s research and work has focused on understanding the impact of race, class, gender on public policy outcomes at the state, local and federal levels; building the economic security of low-income women and families, labor market segmentation, educational equity, and employment; civic engagement, political participation, and leadership development and retention. She is one of the nation’s foremost intersectional researchers and scholars.

Prior to her position at the Foundation, Mason was the most recent Executive Director of the Women of Color Policy Network at New York University’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. There, she held the distinction of being one of the youngest scholar-practitioners to lead a major U.S. research center or think tank.

She is an inaugural Ascend Fellow at the Aspen Institute in Washington, DC. and delivered at TEDTalk at TEDWomen on the courage to disrupt and the gift of being difficult. She also sits on the Board of All Our Kin, a wonderful organization committed to building high-quality, sustainable family child care programs through training and education. To learn more about the work of AOK, please click here.

Nicole lives between Brooklyn, New York and Washington, DC and is mom to twins Charli and Parker and two dogs, Anderson & Sofia.