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Bernard, Michelle

Founder & CEO, Bernard Center and noted journalist, columnist and author


Michelle D. Bernard is the founder, president and CEO of the Bernard Center for Women, Politics & Public Policy and is a frequent political and legal analyst on MSNBC and other television networks. Bernard is a regular political analyst with Hardball, Up, and The Daily Run Down. Additionally, Ms. Bernard appears on HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher and The McLaughlin Group. She is a regular guest commentator on BBC Radio, National Public Radio’s All Things Considered and Tell Me More with Michel Martin and is a contributor for The Hill’s Political Pundits Blog, The Huffington Post, and The Washington Post’s She the People. Bernard is the author of Moving America Toward Justice: The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, 1963-2013, Women’s Progress: How Women Are Wealthier, Healthier and More Independent Than Ever Before and is a contributing author to the National Urban League’s State of Black America and Lifetime Network’s Secrets of Powerful Women: 25 Successful American Politicians Tell How They Got Where They Are ­ And What It’s Like. In 2009, Ms. Bernard co-created, co-produced and hosted MSNBC’s historic television program, About Our Children, featuring Dr. Bill Cosby. The program, which explored poverty and education reform, aired on MSNBC on September 20, 2009. Ms. Bernard is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Board forCertification of Teacher Excellence and the Coalition for Opportunity in Education and is a member of the Board of Trustees of Hampton University. Bernard is a member of the Women’s Forum of Washington, D.C. and is a 2003 graduate of Leadership Maryland. An attorney by training, Ms. Bernard concentrates on domestic and foreign policy matters. As a political and legal analyst, Ms. Bernard has spoken on topics as varied as the historic 2008 presidential campaign and election, various Congressional and gubernatorial campaigns and elections, the political participation and voting trends of African Americans and women, education reform and school choice, energy policy and security, foreign policy and national security issues, the war in Iraq, and advancing democracy, economic liberty, and the human rights of women and ethnic and religious minorities in the Middle East. Ms. Bernard has spoken before numerous organizations and as the former president and CEO of the Independent Women’s Forum (IWF), founded IWF’s Iraqi Women’s Democracy Initiative, which assisted in the development and implementation of training programs built on the pillars of democracy, women’s rights and religious freedom, political activism in a democracy, issues of governance, free markets, and non-governmental organizations. Prior to founding the Bernard Center for Women, Politics & Public Policy and joining IWF, Ms. Bernard was a partner at the District of Columbia’s Patton Boggs LLP. Ms. Bernard holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in philosophy and political science from Howard University and a Juris Doctor degree from The Georgetown University Law Center.