Neas Announces Decision to Step Down as 'People For' President

Longtime leader will continue as President Emeritus as search for successor begins

Ralph G. Neas, President and CEO of People For the American Way and People For the American Way Foundation, announced today that he will be stepping down from his office. He is assuming a new position, President Emeritus, and will continue to assist PFAW and PFAWF in their development and policy work. Chief Operating Officer Nick Ucci will oversee day-to-day management during the search for a new president.

“I am proud of People For’s work over the past eight years to champion our values, safeguard the Constitution, build new programs and expand our outreach in ways that have strengthened the progressive community,” said Neas.

Norman Lear, founder of People For the American Way said, “Ralph oversaw a period of tremendous growth and accomplishment. We were fortunate to have him as a leader during very challenging times for the nation and the progressive movement. We are grateful that we will continue to benefit from Ralph’s energies and talents as People For the American Way moves forward with exciting plans to mobilize Americans who are ready to reverse right-wing attacks on our courts, our Constitution, and on the rights and liberties we cherish.”

Neas is one of the progressive community’s most accomplished leaders, with an extraordinary track record over three decades of collaborative leadership, coalition building, bipartisan legislative accomplishments, legal advocacy, and effective communications and organizing campaigns. He took the helm at People For in January 2000 and has helped lead national coalitions on the federal judiciary and the future of the Supreme Court, to block massive permanent tax cuts, and to strengthen public education in America.

During Neas’ tenure at PFAW and PFAW Foundation, the organizations added hundreds of thousands of new members and supporters, and launched thriving new leadership development and civic engagement programs, including PFAWF’s Young People For, the Young Elected Officials Network, Democracia-USA and Election Protection. Under his leadership, PFAWF programs registered 535,000 African American and Latino voters over the past three years. PFAWF and its partners recruited and managed 25,000 volunteers during the 2004 election for non-partisan election protection efforts.

“I am especially proud of the extraordinarily talented and diverse staff we have put together,” said Neas. “I am looking forward to helping People For strengthen its role as the most effective, multi-issue, multi-dimensional progressive organization in the nation.”

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