Former US Senate Chief of Staff and Legislator Named National Urban League Policy Director

NEW YORK – Former U.S. Senate Chief of Staff Don Cravins, Jr., has been named the National Urban League’s Senior Vice President for Policy and Executive Director of National Urban League Washington Bureau.

“Don’s experience and expertise will deploy enhance the National Urban League’s activism and advocacy initiatives,” League President and CEO Marc H. Morial said. “We’re thrilled to welcome Don and look forward to his dynamic leadership of our Washington Bureau.”

Cravins was the only African-American Chief of Staff in the Senate when he accepted that role from U.S. Sen. Mary L. Landrieu of Louisiana in January of 2013. Prior to that, he served as one of only two African-American staff directors in the U.S. Senate from 2009 to 2013, when he was Staff Director and Chief Counsel for the  Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship.

Most recently, he served as the Deputy National Political Director at The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).  Cravins was elected to the Louisiana House of Representatives in 2004.  At that time, he and his father, State Senator Don Cravins, Sr., made Louisiana history by becoming the first and only father and son to serve in the Louisiana Legislature at the same time.  In 2006, Don was elected to the Louisiana Senate for the seat vacated by his father, which he held until 2009. He was a Congressional candidate in the 7th Congressional District of Louisiana in 2008.

In addition to his duties at AIPAC, Don is an adjunct professor at The George Washington University where he teaches Prosecution and Litigation in Intellectual Property and is also a member of the Washington DC Army National Guard Judge Advocate General Corps where he holds the rank of Captain in Trial Defense Services.

A native of Southwest Louisiana, Cravins earned a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from  Louisiana State University  and a law degree from Southern University Law Center. He and his wife, Yvette Puckett Cravins, the Chief of Staff for Missouri Congressman William Lacy Clay, Jr., have three children: Dominique Claire, 16; Don III “Trey,” 14;  and Chloe Denise, 4. The Cravins reside in Washington, DC.

The National Urban League is a historic civil rights organization dedicated to economic empowerment in order to elevate the standard of living in historically underserved urban communities. Founded in 1910 and headquartered in New York City, the National Urban League spearheads the efforts of its local affiliates through the development of programs, public policy research and advocacy. Today, the National Urban League has 95 affiliates serving 300 communities, in 35 states and the District of Columbia, providing direct services that impact and improve the lives of more than 2 million people nationwide.