Meet Our Fellows

PlacementCBCF Center for Policy Analysis and Research (CPAR)

InterestsEducation, Child welfare, Gender and Racial Equity, LGBTQ+

Fellowship Presented By

Shelby Birch

Social Justice Fellow

Shelby Birch (she/her) champions social justice advocacy. Grounded in a Black feminist praxis, her service and research intersect between education, gender & racial equity, and social policy. She is an alumna of City Year, the Urban Leaders Fellowship, and served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Limpopo, South Africa (PCSA). Shelby successfully built school capacity and improved learning outcomes for students by teaching, mentoring, and brokering community partnerships to increase literacy resources. She established a leadership development and reproductive education program for girls and spearheaded PCSA’s inaugural diversity & inclusion summit. She also worked with elected officials to research and propose equitable housing legislation for Black residents in Washington, DC.

Shelby holds membership in Pi Alpha Alpha National Honor Society for Public Affairs & Administration and is a recipient of academic awards from the Guttmacher Institute and Georgia State University (GSU). She aspires to pursue a Ph.D. in social policy and to create equitable pipelines for marginalized communities as a diversity & inclusion specialist.

An Orlando, FL native, Shelby earned her BA from the University of Central Florida and MPP from the Andrew Young School of Policy Studies at GSU. She is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated, and a published poet.

As part of the Fellowship program, all Fellows complete a Social Impact Service Project (SISP). These projects allow Fellows to partner with a nonprofit organization to implement or support an initiative that aligns with their areas of expertise and the needs of the organization. Shelby’s partner is The National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC). It is a civil rights organization serving primarily Black lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people. Its mission is to end racism, homophobia, and LGBTQ+/SGL bias and stigma. In addition, NBJC supports Black individuals, families, and communities in strengthening the bonds and bridging the gaps between the movements for racial justice and LGBTQ+/SGL equity.

Shelby is working with NBJC to enhance its advocacy outreach and digital presence. These projects include:

  1. Drafting model legislation to be leveraged by members of Congress and within state legislatures. 
  2. Engaging in public outreach for legislative activities. 
  3. Designing infographics and drafting legislative language for NBJC’s website and social media platforms
  4. Supporting HBCU cultural competency training 
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