Jennifer R. Farmer
Managing Director of Communications
Jennifer R. Farmer, a leading professional in communications strategy, has made her mark in social justice movements for close to 12 years. Joining the national racial justice organization Advancement Project in 2012, Farmer serves as managing director for communications. In this role, Farmer manages the organizational brand; implements an organization-wide strategic communications plan; and recruits and manages traditional communications and digital media staffers. Among her other responsibilities, Farmer is a strategic advisor to organizational leaders, grassroots partners and high-profile surrogates.
Farmer’s sharp understanding of the intersection of policy, advocacy and media has helped establish Advancement Project and partners as leading voices in contemporary civil rights. Under Farmer’s leadership, Advancement Project’s staff, partners and board members are regularly featured in leading print, digital and broadcast media outlets including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, Politico, Al Jazeera America, MSNBC, Real Time with Bill Maher, and The Rachel Maddow Show. She is skilled at pitching and placing for publication both feature articles and guest columns, not merely for the sake of generating media coverage, but to help leaders find and share their unique voice. She has taught at the college level, having served as an instructor of Writing for the Media course at Towson University.
Farmer’s leadership at Advancement Project follows a range of experiences spearheading national and state campaigns to affect social change. She served as deputy director of communications for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), where she orchestrated multi-pronged communications projects to elevate the voices of working people. She also worked for SEIU District 1199, whose territory includes Ohio, West Virginia and Kentucky.
Farmer’s experience in the labor movement followed years of civic engagement work through positions in Ohio state government and non-profit organizations, including roles within the Ohio Department of Transportation, the Ohio Senate Democratic Caucus and the Center for Progressive Leadership where she trained and developed leaders seeking elected office. Most notably, Farmer served as an agency lobbyist in the administration of former Ohio Governor Ted Strickland, where she was responsible for brokering the release of more than 25 million dollars to enable feasibility research on a high-speed rail project connecting major Ohio cities such as Cleveland, Columbus and Cincinnati.
A transformative leader, Farmer serves on the national advisory board for the National Center for State Courts’ community engagement in the state courts initiative, a project designed to promote racial and ethnic fairness in the courts. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in English and Political Science from the University of Rochester.