Kimberlé Crenshaw co-founded the AAPF and serves as the Executive Director. Crenshaw, Professor of Law at UCLA and Columbia Law School, is a leading authority in the area of Civil Rights, Black feminist legal theory, and race, racism and the law. Her articles have appeared in the Harvard Law Review, National Black Law Journal, Stanford Law Review and Southern California Law Review. She is the founding coordinator of the Critical Race Theory Workshop, and the co-editor of the volume, Critical Race Theory: Key Documents That Shaped the Movement. Read More
Dr. Luke Charles Harris co-founded the AAPF and is Director of Programming. Harris is the former Chair of the Department of Political Science at Vassar College, where he teaches American Politics and Constitutional Law. Harris clerked for the late A. Leon Higginbotham, Jr., the distinguished legal historian and former Chief Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit; served for two years as a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Warwick, School of Law in Coventry England; and for one year as a Lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania in the Department of Sociology. Read More
Naimah Hakim is a recent graduate of Princeton University (2016) where she majored in Anthropology and earned minors in African American Studies and Gender & Sexuality Studies. During the past year, Naimah completed a research fellowship at the UN Office of the Women's International League for Peace & Freedom (WILPF) and served as an intern with the Brooklyn Volunteer Lawyers Project. She is eager to bring her passions for global human rights, intersectional feminism, and education to the work of the African American Policy Forum.
Julia Sharpe-Levine is a writer, activist and theatre-maker living in Brooklyn. After serving as the Associate Director for 2 years, she now serves as AAPF's Arts and Education Program Director. She is also pursuing a Master's degree in Applied Theatre from CUNY’s School of Professional Studies, where she expects to graduate in Spring 2018. She has written articles on politics and intersectionality for publications such as the Huffington Post and Rewire Magazine. Before joining AAPF in the summer of 2014, Julia attended Vassar College, where she graduated with honors and degrees in drama and Chinese. She is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa National Honor Society.
Teddy Fenster is the Assistant Director of AAPF. He grew up along the California coast, but has always felt more at home in the Pacific Northwest. He recently graduated from Vassar College with honors in Political Science after writing a senior thesis on the state of voting rights after the Shelby v. Holder decision of 2013. He is also a two-time winner of the Julia Flitner Lamb Prize for excellence in political science. After working in a variety of fields, ranging from scenic carpentry and advertising to events programming, he is excited to contribute to the AAPF team. He intends to pursue a JD in the near future.
Niya Kenny is AAPF's Youth Development Intern. In 2015, when Niya Kenny was only 18 years old, she was arrested in her high school classroom in Columbia, South Carolina. Niya was charged with Disturbing Schools and taken to jail after standing up for a classmate who had been assaulted by their school resource officer for not giving up an electronic device. This experience is what sparked her interest in activism and organizing. Niya was invited to join the force that works to dismantle structural inequality under Kimberlé Crenshaw at The African American Policy Forum in New York City, and has been an intern there for the past year. AAPF, based at Columbia Law School, focuses their work on women and girls of color who have experienced violence from the police. Niya’s responsibilities have included everything from research projects to gala event planning, conference programming, merchandise design and sales, and public speaking on behalf of the organization.
Abby Dobson is AAPF's 2016 Artist-In-Residence. A Sonic Conceptualist Artist, Dobson’s sound is the alchemy of R&B/Soul, jazz, classic pop, gospel, and folk, forging a gem that erases musical boundaries. Abby has performed at venues such as S.O.B's, Kennedy Center Millennium Stage, Apollo Theater, Blue Note Jazz Club, and The Tonight Show (Jay Leno). Her debut CD, "Sleeping Beauty: You Are the One You Have Been Waiting On” was released in 2010 to glowing reviews. Abby received a Juris Doctorate degree from Georgetown University Law Center and a Bachelor’s degree from Williams College in Political Science and History. An independent scholar, Abby’s research interests focus on the intersection of race and gender in the imagination, creation, consumption, and distribution of music. Passionate about using music as a tool for empathy cultivation, Abby creates music to privilege black female voices and highlight the human condition. She is committed to shining her artistic light - volunteering with the African American Policy Forum and the National Organization for Women, NYC Chapter. www.abbydobsonsings.com