Dawn Raftery Named Vice President of Communications at the Shriver Center on Poverty Law

A mission-driven communication leader and storyteller, Raftery brings nearly 25 years' experience working for government, business, the media, and nonprofits.

CONTACT: Lane Pickett, 312.368.5231, lanepickett@povertylaw.org

CHICAGO – Dawn Raftery, a mission-driven communication leader and storyteller, has been named the Vice President of Communications for the Shriver Center on Poverty Law.

Dawn Raftery
Dawn Raftery

Raftery brings nearly 25 years’ experience working for government, business, the media and nonprofits. After starting her career in local news, she spent more than a decade in journalism. Later, she directed communications at StriveTogether, a national network focused on equitable education and economic mobility, and led communication and rebranding efforts at IFF, the largest community development financial institution in the Midwest. Most recently, Raftery oversaw media relations, digital and social media, content development and creative design at the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, the regional planning agency for seven counties in northeastern Illinois.

“Laws and policies—and the institutions that apply them—should put people first,” said Raftery. “I’m excited to bring my experience and passion for racial equity and justice to bear in support of the Shriver Center’s mission. Through the power of storytelling, we can drive change.”

As Vice President of Communications, Raftery will lead organizational efforts to communicate the Shriver Center’s vision, values, and accomplishments to diverse constituents, overseeing areas that include brand strategy, message development and public relations. From litigating and shaping policies in Illinois to training and convening multi-state networks of public interest attorneys, the Shriver Center works with and for low-income communities to make equal justice and economic opportunity a reality.

“Policies and laws that create and perpetuate poverty and racial inequity are written into the fabric of our nation, and changing the narrative about poverty and race is critical to the Shriver Center’s advocacy,” said Audra Wilson, President and CEO of the Shriver Center. “I’m thrilled to have a leader of Dawn’s caliber in this important role.”

Raftery is a graduate of Northern Illinois University. She will be based at the Shriver Center’s headquarters in Chicago.  


The Shriver Center on Poverty Law fights for economic and racial justice. Over our 50-year history, we have secured hundreds of victories with and for people living in poverty in Illinois and across the country. Today, we litigate, shape policy, and train and convene multi-state networks of lawyers, community leaders, and activists nationwide. Together, we are building a future where all people have equal dignity, respect, and power under the law. Join the fight at povertylaw.org

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