“My grandfather, Van S. Bird, was a minister, scholar, and activist. He once said something that’s always stuck with me: ‘We must offer a world view, a sacred canopy of meaning, which provides hope for the hopeless, love for the unloved, and the possibility of justice in an unjust world.’”
Kisha Bird is CLASP's director of youth policy and project director for the Campaign for Youth (CFY), a national coalition chaired by CLASP. Ms. Bird works to expand access to education, employment, and support services for disconnected and other vulnerable youth. She is an expert in federal policy for vulnerable youth and helps ensure national legislation (such as the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act) is fully implemented in communities nationwide and has maximum impact for poor and low-income youth and youth of color.
Before joining CLASP, Ms. Bird was director of the Pennsylvania Statewide Afterschool/Youth Development Network, working to make quality education and afterschool programs accessible to young people. Prior to that, she was a program officer at the Philadelphia Foundation, where she helped develop and manage the Fund for Children, Youth Advisory Board, and discretionary grants process. She also has direct service experience, working in various community settings with children, youth and families. Ms. Bird holds a master of social service and master of law and social policy from Bryn Mawr College Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research. Additionally, she earned a bachelor's in sociology from Spelman College. Lastly, she is a graduate of the Education Policy Fellowship Program, a joint program of the Institute for Educational Leadership and the Pennsylvania Education Policy Leadership Center.