The ACLU of North Carolina (ACLU-NC) is the North Carolina state affiliate of the American Civil Liberties Union, and the ACLU-NC Legal Foundation (ACLU-NCLF) is the 501(c)(3) arm of the ACLU-NC that coordinates and carries out its legal and educational work around civil liberties issues. The North Carolina affiliate of the ACLU was founded in 1965, is based in Raleigh, and has grown to approximately 10,000 members and supporters statewide. Our mission is to preserve and defend the guarantees of individual liberty found in the North Carolina Constitution and the US Constitution, with particular emphasis on freedom of speech, freedom of association, freedom of religion, equal protection under law for all people, the right to privacy, the right to due process of law, and the right to be free from unreasonable search and seizure.
The ACLU-NC and its Legal Foundation are governed by all-volunteer Boards of Directors, composed of individuals from many different parts of the state and who work in a variety of professions. Most Board members are elected by the general membership to serve three-year terms and may serve no more than two consecutive terms. The Board sets the agenda for the organization and is charged with governance, oversight and securing the resources necessary for the organization to carry out its mission.
The ACLU-NC and its legal arm maintain seven permanent staff positions: Executive Director, Legal Director, Policy Director, Communications Director, Staff Attorney, Director of Operations, and Paralegal. To view a brief bio on our current staff members, please select one of their images below:
Acting Executive Director
Director of Operations
Jillian Brevorka, President
Irene Godinez, Vice President (Union)
Bruce Elmore, Vice President (Foundation)
Curry First, Secretary (Union)
Tish Gay, Secretary (Foundation)
Paula Kohut, Treasurer
Malik Edwards, Affirmative Action Officer
Jon Sasser, Legal Committee Chair (Foundation)
Carlos Mahoney, National ACLU Board Representative (Union)
Seth Cohen, General Counsel (Foundation)
Holning Lau, Immediate Past President
Jim Cavener (Union)
Robert "Hoppy" Elliot
Brandy Hagler (Union)
Matthew D. Quinn (Union)
J. Wayne Riggins
Cindy Vogler (Union)
*Unless otherwise noted, board members listed above serve on both the ACLU of North Carolina and the ACLU of North Carolina Legal Foundation boards.
- Director of Philanthropy: The ACLU-NCLF is seeking a Director of Philanthropy, a fulltime senior leadership position reporting to the Executive Director, to develop and implement a strategy for building new programs that raise funds for the ACLU-NCLF’s annual budget and that strengthen the relationships between the ACLU-NCLF and its supporters. Learn more.
The ACLU-NC has various volunteer chapters throughout the state. We encourage members to get in touch with their nearest chapter for more opportunities. If you are interested in starting a new ACLU-NC chapter, please email Mike Meno at .
NOTE: CHAPTERS CANNOT PROVIDE LEGAL ASSISTANCE TO INDIVIDUALS. If you are seeking legal assistance, please call 919-834-3466 or fill out this online form.
ACLU of Wake County:
REGULAR MEETING TIME: The second Wednesday of every month at 6:00PM at the Advocates for Justice Building, 1312 Annapolis Drive, Raleigh, NC 27608.
The Wake County ACLU is a local organization dedicated to the advancement of civil liberties. Our goal is to advocate in favor of robust civil liberties, and to educate the public on civil liberties issues. To accomplish these goals the Wake County ACLU holds regular community outreach events, such as award dinners, debates, panel discussions, among other activities. We are an active group, but we wish to be more active -- thus, volunteers are needed and encouraged! Our monthly board meetings are open to the public, so please feel free to attend and learn what we're about and how you can help.
ACLU of Western North Carolina:
- Chapter President: Curry First:
- Chapter Website: http://acluwnc.wordpress.com/
ACLU of Charlotte:
- Chapter President: Steve Lauer:
- Chapter Website: http://www.aclu-charlotte.org/
ACLU at Charlotte School of Law
ACLU at University of North Carolina at Asheville:
ACLU at University of North Carolina Law School
ACLU at Campbell University School of Law
- Chapter President: Michael Ferretti
LEGAL INTERNS: The ACLU of North Carolina has a number of legal internship opportunities and welcomes applications from law school students for fall, spring or summer semesters. Although our internships are unpaid, we will accommodate students who would like to receive course credit for their program. All internship positions have project responsibilities as well as administrative duties.
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES: Volunteers are the backbone of the ACLU. Volunteers make the ACLU's work to protect and extend civil liberties and civil rights possible. We have a variety of volunteer opportunities available and do our best to match your interests and expertise with our current needs. Many of our volunteer opportunities extend beyond out office out into communities throughout North Carolina.
Ways you can volunteer include, but are not limited to:
- Tabling at events
- Hosting a house party
- Local organizing
- Phone banking and
- Being a "community watchdog"!
Please note that we do not accept requests for legal assistance via e-mail. If you are seeking to retain our legal services, please submit a formal intake to our office in Raleigh. Due to the extremely high volume of e-mail we receive, we are not able to guarantee a response to every inquiry, but all formal requests for assistance will receive a response (typically within 4 to 6 weeks).