Non-profit

Leadership Now Project

The Leadership Now Project is a left-of-center organization that seeks to improve governance. It was formed by a group of Harvard Business School graduates and has chapters in at least five cities. It is a member of the Fix the System coalition, which is purportedly targeted towards right-leaning voters. The founder of the organization is a former staffer in the State Department during the Obama administration and the group was founded as a sideline effort to the controversial left-wing Women’s March in Washington, D.C. [1]

The organization conducts surveys and lobbies for changes in government. It also awards grants to left-of-center organizations.

Overview

The Leadership Now Project was founded by a group of Harvard Business School alumni and works to propose reforms in governance. It does this by working with left-of-center organizations and by recruiting and supporting political candidates. It also conducts polls and surveys to test public opinion around certain issues and it also raises money for candidates on platforms like CrowdPac, a small-dollar fundraising platform that has barred Republicans from using it since 2018. [2]

Among the complaints the group has with the current political system is it believes the election system is unfair. The group protests Republican-led redistricting efforts, opposes regulations on voting and election administration, and advocates limiting free speech by imposing campaign finance restrictions. [3]

Leadership

The CEO and co-founder of the Leadership Now Project is Daniella Ballou-Aares. She was previously a partner and director for the Americas at Dalberg, an international development consultancy. Before she returned to Dalberg she worked as the senior advisor for development in the State Department under President Barack Obama. She holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and she is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. [4]

The chief operating officer is Meghann Curtis. She has experience in the foreign policy arena, including a stint in the State Department in the Obama administration. She also worked as a journalist in South Africa and worked for the city of New York. [5]

Mairin Macaluso is the director of membership. She previously led the Harvard Business School Association of Northern California. She graduated from the Harvard Business School. [6]

Minahil Amin is the director of investment. She previously worked at Dalberg Global Development Advisors where she worked for clients such as the Gates Foundation and USAID. [7]

Nilmini Rubin is a senior advisor to the project. She was a senior aide to former U.S. Senator Richard Lugar (R-IN) and a former aide to the House Foreign Affairs Committee. She also previously worked in the White House National Security Council under President George W. Bush. She also worked on the foreign policy teams for the 2012 Presidential campaign of Mitt Romney and the 2016 Presidential campaign of then-Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R). [8]

Work

One of the projects of the organization is its “New Leaders” work. The program supports new candidates for Congress who support with the organization’s goals. The endorsed candidates are all Democrats. [9]

The group also works to support other left-of-center organizations. For example, in November 2019, the Center for Responsive Politics announced that it had received an investment from the Leadership Now Project. [10]

The group also lobbies corporate leaders. In June 2017, it spearheaded a letter by Harvard Business School alumni asking the five graduates on the President’s Strategy and Policy Forum to resign over the Trump administration’s withdrawal from the Paris Climate Accords. It also praised CEOs who resigned from the forum and the President’s Council on Manufacturing in August 2017 in the wake of the white supremacist riot in Charlottesville, Virginia. [11]

The group is also a member of the Fix the System coalition. The coalition is an attempt to promote left-of-center election administration policies to voters on the center and the right. [12]

References

  1.         Ballou-Aares, Daniella. 2017. “From State Department To Leadership Now”. Impact Insights. https://www.hbs.edu/socialenterprise/blog/post/leadership-now-project.    ^
  2. Ballou-Aares, Daniella. 2017. “From State Department To Leadership Now”. Impact Insights. https://www.hbs.edu/socialenterprise/blog/post/leadership-now-project. ^
  3. Ballou-Aares, Daniella. 2017. “From State Department To Leadership Now”. Impact Insights. https://www.hbs.edu/socialenterprise/blog/post/leadership-now-project. ^
  4. “About”. 2020. Leadership Now Project. Accessed April 6. https://www.leadershipnowproject.org/about. ^
  5. “About”. 2020. Leadership Now Project. Accessed April 6. https://www.leadershipnowproject.org/about. ^
  6. “About”. 2020. Leadership Now Project. Accessed April 6. https://www.leadershipnowproject.org/about. ^
  7. “About”. 2020. Leadership Now Project. Accessed April 6. https://www.leadershipnowproject.org/about. ^
  8. “About”. 2020. Leadership Now Project. Accessed April 6. https://www.leadershipnowproject.org/about. ^
  9.   “New Leaders”. 2020. Leadership Now Project. Accessed April 6. https://www.leadershipnowproject.org/new-leaders. ^
  10. “Opensecrets Announces Investment By Leadership Now Project”. 2019. Opensecrets News. https://www.opensecrets.org/news/2019/11/leadershipnow-investment-press-release/. ^
  11. “The Leadership We Need”. 2017. Medium. https://medium.com/@daniella_52586/the-leadership-we-need-83447036f159. ^
  12. “New Coalition Will Push Democracy Reforms Targeted To Center And Right”. 2020. The Fulcrum. https://thefulcrum.us/amp/fix-the-system-2645577502. ^

Donor Organizations

  1. Hopewell Fund (Non-profit)
  See an error? Let us know!