Executive Vice President for Government Affairs
Jesselyn McCurdy is the Executive Vice President for Government Affairs at The Leadership Conference of Civil and Human Rights. Prior to joining The Leadership Conference, Jesselyn was a Deputy Political Director at the National Political Advocacy Department of the American Civil Liberties Union. She led the NPAD Equality Division that engages in federal and state advocacy as well as campaigns on immigration rights, racial justice, and Arab, Middle Eastern, Muslim, and South Asian issues.
Before joining the Equality team, Jesselyn led the ACLU’s federal criminal justice advocacy work at the ACLU Washington Legislative Office, including federal sentencing, prison reform, drug policy, capital punishment, and police reform. She was a member of the WLO staff before joining the U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee’s Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security Subcommittee as Counsel. While working for the Judiciary Committee, she was the lead House Counsel for the historic Fair Sentencing Act of 2010, the legislation that lowered the 100 to 1 disparity between crack and powder cocaine.
Prior to joining the ACLU, Jesselyn was the Co-Director of the Children’s Defense Fund’s Education and Youth Development Division. Also, she has authored the chapter entitled Targets for Arrest in the book “From Education to Incarceration: Dismantling the School to Prison Pipeline.” Jesselyn received a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Political Science from Rutgers University and her Juris Doctor from Catholic University of America, Columbus School of Law.