Shalonda Spencer is now deepening her impact as Executive Director at Women of Color Advancing Peace and Security (WCAPS).
Spencer's admiration for social justice and equality started when she was a graduate assistant for The Fannie Lou Hamer Institute @ COFO. She educated local and long-distance visitors on the Civil Rights Movement of Mississippi. With a ubiquitous legislative portfolio focusing on many public policy issues affecting people of color, Spencer has been vigilant in honing in on women's rights, social justice, foreign affairs, immigration, healthcare, and education.
Prior to joining WCAPS, Shalonda was Director of Public Policy and Government Affairs at Trying Together in Pittsburgh, PA, advocating for high-quality early learning education for children and families. She also served as a Legislative Assistant for the United States House of Representatives for the 2nd Congressional District of Mississippi and as a Foreign Policy Analyst for the Mennonite Central Committee. While residing in MS, she was an adjunct professor at Millsaps College. She taught Urban Politics within the Government and Politics Department. Shalonda was the Advocacy Coordinator for ACLU of Mississippi, focusing on the affiliate's criminal justice reform and voter rights centers of work. She also had the privilege to work on federal presidential campaigns such as Senator Bernie Sanders in 2015 and President Joe Biden's super Tuesday election in Mississippi.
An expert in advocacy for women's rights, Spencer deepened her knowledge base with the Mississippi Women's Policy Institute as an Economic Justice fellow advocating for economic security to increase wages and job advancement for women. In 2019, she founded Young (WIP) Young Women in Politics, to educate and empower young girls to get involved in the political process. She serves on the Advisory Board at Mississippi Votes, Board Vice-President of Peace and Pearls and an ambassador for the Emmett Till Legacy Foundation.
Spencer is a proud Mississippi native and graduate of Jackson State University, earning a Bachelor's degree in Criminal Justice and a Master's degree in Public Policy and Administration. Recognized for her contributions to the advocacy and public service field, she has been acknowledged for Women's History month by Jackson State University's Alumni Department, Who's Who of Mississippi Women, and For Brown Girls Inc.