Program Director, Democratic Practice-United States
Keesha Gaskins-Nathan is the director for the Democratic Practice–United States program at the Rockefeller Brothers Fund. She is a long-time organizer, lobbyist, and trial attorney. Prior to joining the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, she was senior counsel with the Brennan Center for Justice, serving as the director of the Redistricting and Representation program. Her portfolio included redistricting reform, voting rights, and elections, with a focus on voter suppression issues. Keesha is a frequent lecturer and writer on issues related to women and politics, movement building, and democratic reform. She is the author of a number of articles and publications related to voter suppression, voting rights, and redistricting.
Keesha served as executive director for the League of Women Voters Minnesota, where she worked on a wide range of voting rights and civil rights issues. Prior to that, she was the executive director for the Minnesota Women’s Political Caucus. She worked for a number of years as a trial attorney, most notably with the firm Bowman and Brooke, LLC. Ms. Gaskins-Nathan also served as a special assistant appellate public defender for the State of Minnesota. She also served as the Legal Redress Chair for the Minnesota-North Dakota-South Dakota State Conference for the NAACP, and the 3rd Vice President for the Minneapolis NAACP. She also served on the Board of Governors for the Minnesota State Bar Association and the Board of Directors for the Minnesota Association of Black Lawyers. As an undergraduate, she served as the Chair of the Human Rights Commission for the City of Saint Cloud, MN.
Following law school, Keesha served as a shared judicial clerk for the Honorable Alan Page and the Honorable Joan Ericksen at the Minnesota Supreme Court. She was also a 2008 Feminist Leadership Fellow with the University of Minnesota, Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs – Center on Women and Public Policy. In 1999, she received her Juris Doctor for Northeastern University School of Law and graduated with honors with a dual degree in Criminal Justice and Political Science from St. Cloud State University. She is a frequent commentator on voting rights and redistricting reform and regularly appears on numerous news and public affairs programming, including past appearances on PBS’s NewsHour, MSNBC, and Bill Moyers.