Dawn Raftery

Dawn Raftery
Dawn Raftery
Dawn Raftery
Vice President of Communications


Dawn Raftery

Dawn Raftery is a storyteller, truth teller, and nonprofit executive. She has 25 years’ experience as a journalist turned communication executive. Her passion for justice and joy shapes her approach to work at the Shriver Center on Poverty Law. As Vice President of Communications, she leads a team focused on brand strategy, messaging, media relations, marketing, digital strategy, and more.

Previously, Dawn directed communications at the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP). She also served as director of communication at StriveTogether. The national network uses systems change to improve education outcomes for kids. Before that, Dawn led communications and rebranding efforts at IFF. The Chicago-based community development financial institution is the largest one in the Midwest. While at a global marketing and internet services company, she oversaw the launch and management of more than 130 community magazines in 11 states. She started her career in local news.

Dawn is known as a brazen bibliophile and proud pup parent. As a kid, her favorite word was why. It’s no surprise Dawn spent over a decade in journalism, elevating community voice and holding the powerful accountable. Since leaving the newsroom, she has worked in business, government and nonprofits.

Dawn believes a mission-driven life goes beyond the office. That’s why she was a board member at Woman Made Gallery and the Association for Women Journalists-Chicago. She also mentored high school girls in theater criticism at Goodman Theatre for 10 years. Dawn graduated from Northern Illinois University with a bachelor of arts in English and a minor in women’s studies. She enjoys writing, scrutinizing pop culture, and hanging out with her dog, Phoebe. Her latest obsession is everything everywhere featuring Michelle Yeoh.

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