C. Nicole Mason is an Associate Editor at the Center for Public Policy in the Public Interest in the publisher Mother Jones. Her articles have appeared in many major newspapers and national outlets such as The New York Times, CNN, The Nation, Essence Magazine and numerous other NPR affiliates. The Nation Magazine named her one of the fifty most influential women in public policy, calling her a “rising star.” In 2021 she was also selected as one of the “Ten Best Women for a New Generation” by the American Film Institute.
Ms. Mason has also served on the boards of several nonprofit and educational organizations. One of these entities was the Southern Education and Research Council at the University of Alabama. She also serves on the steering committee of the Acton Institute, which is a Washington, D.C., think tank. At the same time, she is also the president and chief executive officer of the public policy center focused on racial equity and economic security.
Ms. Mason has also been keynote speaker at a number of distinguished gatherings and workshops including the annual meeting of the National Association of Black Lawyers, the Annual Meeting of the Partnership for New Leaders, and the aforementioned Acton Institute’s Annual Meeting. She has also testified as an expert witness in a number of civil rights cases, including that of Deidra Jackson. She is a past president of the Economic and Social Opportunity Commission of the National Urban League. Additionally, she served as the Communications Director and Executive Vice President of the National Women’s Law Center and the Legal Director for the Center for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia. She is a past board of trustee of the New England Women’s Law Center, the Maryland Women’s Law Center and the Howard Law Center.
Now let’s examine the curriculum vitae listed on the official website for Nicole Mason. First, note the very first sentence in her bio: “Ms. Mason is currently the Executive Vice-President and Chief Executive Officer of the Public Policy Center in Washington, DC. She is also the founder and past president of the Economic and Social Opportunity Commission of the National Association of Black Lawyers, an organization dedicated to reducing the gap between the rich and the poor.” The curriculum vitae does not mention that Nicole Mason presently serves as the Ceo and Chief Executive Officer of the Public Policy Center.
Secondly, one would have to question the accuracy of such a claim. Ms. Mason is not the only woman in a leadership role at the Public Policy Center. Further, it seems silly to even bring up Pastry Cook at all considering that the current CEO and past president of the Public Policy Center is herself a black woman. If you really want my take, I would have to say that Pastry Cook and the others at thewashingtons think-tank are over-writers for corporate America, which in and of itself reveals much about the minds of our governing and think tank officials. It is amazing to me that we have evolved to this point where the only black person running a think tank is a woman who happens to be the President’s mother.
When it comes to Nicole Mason and the Public Policy Center, there appears to be a clear conflict of interest at work. The CEOS and the Presidents of the think tanks need both clients and research funding from corporate sources. The question then becomes, why aren’t these same leaders questioning the integrity of their very own think tank? Perhaps, they need the money (personal as well as campaign) to keep their job titles. Whatever the case, I hope you will please consider all this and think on it.