Martha Lagace F'21

Martha  Lagace

African Communities Together

Leading Edge Fellowships 2021
African Communities Together
Appointed to African Communities Together for the project "Mapping African Immigrant Communities Post-2020"
PhD, Anthropology, Boston University

African Communities Together (ACT) is a national organization of African immigrants with offices in the New York City and Washington, D.C. metro areas. ACT empowers African immigrants to integrate socially, get ahead economically, and engage civically. ACT connects African immigrants to services, develops our members as grassroots leaders, and takes action to make social change. Since its founding, ACT has connected thousands of African immigrants to direct services, trained hundreds of new leaders, and led successful policy campaigns at the federal, state, and local levels that have impacted hundreds of thousands of immigrants. ACT’s African immigrant membership comes from a diverse range of nationalities, cultures, and languages, is religiously diverse, and is predominantly working-class and low-income. The Leading Edge Fellow will join ACT’s team as a Research Manager, and use policy research, qualitative and quantitative data, and personal narratives to advocate for policy reforms that advance immigrant and civil rights, economic development, and access to services for African immigrants living in the United States. The Research Manager’s primary focus will be updating ACT’s demographic research on African immigrant communities in New York City, Washington, D.C., and other metro areas, as well as crafting regional profiles for publication that present this data in the context of the COVID-19 crisis, developments in U.S. immigration policy, and the racial justice uprisings. This research will help advance public awareness of the needs of African immigrant communities and support local, state, and federal policies that advance legal equality, economic development, access to resources, and civic engagement among African immigrants.