Emily is an executive with significant and progressive experience in public affairs, political/strategic counsel, board relations, community relations, and crisis communications, with expertise in building and optimizing relationships. She is a consensus-builder and a results-driven manager with a motivational management style and a reputation for building and retaining highly motivated teams and partnerships.
Who Is She?
Deputy Co-Chair, B20 Indonesia Women in Business Action Council
Board Member, USCIB-United States Council for International Business
Board Member, The Bryce Harlow Foundation
Board Member, National Foundation for Women Legislators
“Empowering people to find their purpose in opportunities that emerge from the unexpected.”
An attorney by training, Emily has worked in government, higher education, and the nonprofit sector. This diversity of experiences has been filled with constant change. In her writing and presentations, Emily shares how she embraced this change and ultimately leveraged them into positive career and personal outcomes. She encourages others, especially minority women, to look at these unforeseen circumstances as stepping stones to greater success.
“I exemplify a non-traditional path to accomplishment.”
Along with her two sisters, Emily was raised in Queens, NY by parents who believed in the value of education and promoted activism and entrepreneurship. She credits her father, who had only a 7th grade education, with teaching her business principles and how to create your own lane when others don’t see your value. She credits her mother, a voracious reader, former Sunday school superintendent, Girl Scout troop leader, and union representative, for teaching her to pursue a greater purpose to help others through work and volunteerism. These teachings are the foundation for Emily’s work ethic and commitment to helping others. A graduate of a historically black college and its law school, Emily spent her gap year as a Volunteer in Service to America (VISTA) in the AmeriCorps program. This federal initiative is referred to as the domestic Peace Corps. Emily enrolled in the evening law school program at North Carolina Central University while working at Duke University in administrative roles with the Vice President for Institutional Equity and University Architect.
Emily made the choice not to pursue “Big Law,” instead opting to leverage her new law degree and administrative skills to run the Mayor’s Office in Chapel Hill, NC. That role led to roles as the Director of Community and Government Affairs at a university and subsequently as the Assistant Vice President for Federal Relations with the University of North Carolina system. A stretch assignment landed Emily the opportunity to serve as the Vice President for Public Policy at a Washington, DC-based association. This role included oversight of a P&L as Executive Director for the Center for Public Trusteeship and Governance. Being in the DC area presented new opportunities which led to her hire as the Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Chief Relationship Officer for the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. Emily was in this seat when the CEO was tapped to become CEO of SHRM. She was asked to join him and came aboard four years ago as Chief of Staff. Since that time, Emily has been tasked with additional responsibilities. She now has oversight for the executive office, government affairs, global policy, board relations, and the organization’s real estate holdings.
“Doing good and helping others.”
Emily was raised in the Lutheran religion and often speaks about the importance of her faith and our assignment to help others. Emily has served as Fund Development Chairman for the Alpha Kappa Alpha Educational Advancement Foundation, North Carolina Central University College of Arts & Sciences Advisory Board, the Ivy Community Service Foundation of Cary, Inc., and the Black Entertainment and Sports Lawyers Association. She currently serves as Chairman of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority HBCU Taskforce, where she has led efforts to raise $10 million in four years for the nation’s HBCUs. In 2021 the group raised $2 million in one day on HBCU Impact Day. This fall it was announced that there is an AKA Endowment at every HBCU in the country. An education advocate, Emily serves on the board of her alma mater, is a member of the advisory board of Strategic Education, Inc., and is a board director for the SkillUp Coalition.