Chastity Lord is the President and CEO of the Jeremiah Program, which is one of the country’s most successful two-generation prosperity solutions for families headed by single mothers in poverty.
A national nonprofit leader, Chastity has dedicated her life to disrupting systems of inequity through a social justice lens in an effort to bridge the opportunity gap. Chastity has a unique mix of both practitioner and executive leadership and has spent two decades specializing in organizational development, education, college access, fundraising, and leadership development.
Most recently, Chastity served as Chief Operating Officer at Color of Change (COC), a racial justice organization with over 1.5 million members. COC was recognized by Fast Company as one of the most innovative nonprofit organizations in 2015 and again in 2018 under Chastity’s leadership. In her COO role, Chastity led the overall strategic growth and health of the organization’s internal culture, senior leadership, fundraising, compliance and operations. Her leadership also supported the execution of innovative systems that aligned campaigns and infrastructure to meet the increasing demand for COC’s platforms and political voice.
Prior to joining Color of Change, Chastity was the Chief External Officer of Achievement First, a nonprofit organization that operates 37 charter schools in Rhode Island, Connecticut and Brooklyn. Over five years, Chastity worked with community leaders to secure $200 million, favorable expansion terms and progressive educational policy funding, helping level the playing field for poor and marginalized communities.
Later, Chastity spent eight years at The Posse Foundation, a nationally recognized and MacArthur Genius awarded college access program, devoted to public high school students who show academic and leadership potential but may be overlooked by the traditional college admission process. In her role as Regional Vice President, Chastity played a critical role in Posse’s strategic plan to double its national footprint by 2020 while overseeing and codifying the impact of sites in Chicago, Los Angeles, Atlanta and DC.
Chastity’s professional north star and commitment to equity and social justice for the past two decades is influenced by her own personal experience as a first-generation college graduate. Chastity understands that education is not the panacea for inequity but unapologetically credits it to transforming how she dreams and disrupting the cycle of poverty for her own family.
Chastity has a BA in organizational communication from University of Oklahoma and an MBA in strategy and marketing from Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. She is a 2012 Pahara-Aspen Fellow with the Aspen Global Leadership Network and serves on the board of Shriver National Center on Poverty and Law.