Donna Edwards

Oxon Hill, MD

Donna Edwards served as U.S. Representative for Maryland’s 4th congressional district from 2008 to 2017. Among her many legislative priorities were youth development programs, affordable childcare, reducing opioid deaths, and campaign finance and election reform. A lawyer and longtime community activist, she became the first black woman to represent Maryland on Capitol Hill. Previously, the Honorable Ms. Edwards co-founded and led the National Network to End Domestic Violence, spearheading the effort to pass the 1994 Violence Against Women Act. She was the executive director of the Arca Foundation and Center For New Democracy. Before attending law school, she held positions at the United Nations Development Program and the Lockheed Corporation in NASA’s Spacelab program.

Since leaving public office, she has served on numerous nonprofit boards in various capacities from treasurer to chair, including at the Bauman Foundation, Park Foundation, and the League of Conservation Voters. She was Senior Fellow of the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law and currently serves on the Profile in Courage Awards Committee of the John F. Kennedy Library. A Wake Forest graduate, Ms. Edwards is a current Wake Forest Trustee and received the 2019 Distinguished Alumni Award. She continues to have a voice in national issues as a contributing columnist for The Washington Post and a regular commentator on MSNBC, NBC, and Fox.