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Wisdom O. Cole

National Director, Youth & College

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Wisdom O. Cole is the National Director of the NAACP Youth & College Division. In this role, he serves more than 700 youth councils, high school chapters, and college chapters actively involved in the fight for civil rights. Wisdom brings extensive experience in civil rights advocacy training institute, electoral action training, grassroots organizing, issues toolkits, and webinars at the local, state, and national level. He has managed national campaign efforts focused on building Black political power through youth leadership development, advocacy, and direct action organizing for the past 5 years with the NAACP, formerly as the National Campaigns & Training Manager.

In his time at the NAACP, he has worked on campaigns around the cancelation of student debt, removing police from schools, as well as increasing voter access for young Black people. He has been featured on Politico, NPR, VICE, NBC Washington News, Brooking Institute, and The Economist as an advocate for Black youth voter turnout through issue-based campaign organizing. In 2023, he was recognized in Politico's Recast Power List 2023, honoring those who are changing the world through race and politics.

Wisdom was previously a field and state conference organizer for the Afrikan Black Coalition (ABC), the largest Black collegiate organization in California. In 2014, he collaboratively organized the Afrikan Black Coalition conference that featured keynote speakers such as Marc Lamont Hill, Angela Davis, Bobby Seale, and Attallah Shabazz. For this effort, he received the Chancellor's Achievement Award for Diversity in recognition for outstanding contributions to furthering diversity, inclusion, and excellence at UC Santa Cruz.

Wisdom grew up in California where he earned a B. A. in Chemistry, with a minor in STEM Education, from UC Santa Cruz as well as a M. A. in Teaching from the University of San Francisco.

Derrick Lewis - Youth & College Hero

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