Plenary Speaker: Amaad Rivera

amaadAmaad is currently the Policy Advisor for Senator Edward Markey. Prior to his present position, he is the Director of Housing Policy at Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD) and a former City Alderman in Springfield.

Amaad was born and raised in Springfield, Massachusetts, where he ran for City Council in 2008. He has spent his life personally and professionally battling tough challenges, and he has succeeded by continually finding opportunities to make positive change for himself, his family, and his community.

Working himself through college, Amaad graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Marketing with minors in Psychology and Information Technology. He completed his Master of Education at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in May 2009. Afterward, he lead the National Racial Wealth Divide Program at United for a Fair Economy. In this position, Amaad worked with policy makers and organizations to implement policies that ensure that economic prosperity reaches everyone.

By his early 20s Amaad was an AmeriCorps Program Officer for the Massachusetts Service Alliance. At the Massachusetts Service Alliance, Amaad managed an 11 million dollar portfolio of grants to organizations dedicated to closing the achievement gap is schools, ensuring access to quality health care for all, protecting the environment, and promoting community and civic engagement. Amaad has also developed civic engagement initiatives for young people in the city of Holyoke, Massachusetts, founding the KidsVote initiative, engaging over 2,200 young people, aged 18 and under, in the voting process in its first year.

Amaad’s articles and publications have been featured in major media outlets including The Washington Post, The Nation, Huffington Post, Christian Science Monitor, National Public Radio, Democracy Now, Too Much,, CSPAN, Boston Neighborhood Network News, and numerous local radio stations.

Amaad is a member of the Progressive Communicators Network.

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