Person

Deborah Axt

Nationality:

American

Occupation:

Co-Executive Director, Make the Road New York

Education:

Georgetown University Law School

Deborah Axt, a graduate of Georgetown University Law Center, works as the co-executive director of Make the Road New York, a left-of-center community organizing group aligned with liberal expansionist immigration policy and left-of-center labor union interests.

Early Life

Axt earned her undergraduate degree from Vanderbilt University[1] and, later, graduated magna cum laude from Georgetown University Law Center. [2] Between earning her undergraduate and graduate degrees, Axt worked as a union and community organizer in several states, including California and Florida. [3]

Career

As of early 2021, Axt works as the co-executive director of Make the Road New York (MRNY), a community organizing group with ties to left-of-center labor and immigration causes. Axt first joined the organization as a summer legal intern in 2000 and joined the staff full-time in 2002 after graduating from Georgetown University Law Center. She became a co-executive director in 2012 after she expanded MRNY’s legal department. [4]

As a co-executive director, Axt leads the legal department as well as finance and development operations. She also leads MRNY’s low-wage worker policy and organizing efforts. Programmatically, she organized car wash campaigns for car wash workers in New York City and the Committee for Better Banks, as well as led the campaign to pass the Wage Theft Protection Act in New York. [5]

Axt also played an active role in launching MRNY partner organizations in other states such as Make the Road Connecticut, Make the Road New Jersey, and Make the Road Pennsylvania. [6]

In October 2020, Axt and fellow co-executive director Javier Valdes announced that they will be stepping down as co-executive directors as of April 2021 and will hand over authority of MRNY to three internal members of the organization. [7]

In addition to Axt’s work at MRNY, she is also an adjunct professor of clinical law at New York University Law School. [8]

Board Affiliations

Axt sits as a member of the board of directors of the Center for Popular Democracy,[9] a left-of-center nonprofit focused on voter mobilization, and Alliance for a Greater New York (ALIGN),[10] a nonprofit alliance of labor unions and community organizations that advocates for economic equality. [11]

Political Views

In 2016, Axt co-authored a piece published in Medium describing how white progressives could help stop President Donald Trump and his administration’s agenda. Axt noted that “large-scale protest and civil disobedience will be at the heart of our movements’ efforts to stop him in his tracks,” and for white progressives to “be ready to put your body on the line” by participating in protests and gatherings. [12]

References

  1. Georgetown University Law Center First Year Students, 1998. https://repository.library.georgetown.edu/bitstream/handle/10822/1042234/gulc_facebook_1998.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y. ^
  2. “Our Team.” Make the Road New York, November 11, 2020. https://maketheroadny.org/our-team/. ^
  3. “Our Team.” Make the Road New York, November 11, 2020. https://maketheroadny.org/our-team/. ^
  4. “Our Team.” Make the Road New York, November 11, 2020. https://maketheroadny.org/our-team/. ^
  5. “Our Team.” Make the Road New York, November 11, 2020. https://maketheroadny.org/our-team/. ^
  6. “Our Team.” Make the Road New York, November 11, 2020. https://maketheroadny.org/our-team/. ^
  7. Custodio, Jonathan. “Make the Road New York Announces Leadership Shift.” Make the Road New York, October 27, 2020. https://maketheroadny.org/make-the-road-new-york-announces-leadership-shift/. ^
  8. “Deborah Lynn Axt.” NYU Law. Accessed December 26, 2020. https://its.law.nyu.edu/facultyprofiles/index.cfm?fuseaction=profile.overview. ^
  9. “Our Team.” Make the Road New York, November 11, 2020. https://maketheroadny.org/our-team/. ^
  10. “Staff & Board.” ALIGN. Accessed December 26, 2020. https://alignny.org/staff-board/. ^
  11. “History.” ALIGN. Accessed December 26, 2020. https://alignny.org/about/. ^
  12. Axt, Deborah, and Daniel Altschuler. “How White Progressives Should Respond in the Era of Trump.” Medium. Medium, December 21, 2016. https://medium.com/@MakeTheRoadNY/how-white-liberals-should-respond-in-the-era-of-trump-a29e1e7bd0f9. ^
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