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Kica Matos Appointed Head of U.S. Reconciliation & Human Rights Programme at The Atlantic Philanthropies

Resource type: News

The Atlantic Philanthropies |

New York, June 9, 2009 Kica Matos has been appointed Programme Executive and Head of the U.S. Reconciliation & Human Rights Programme at The Atlantic Philanthropies, effective June 1st. In this capacity, she will focus on national security and human rights within the program’s grant portfolio.

Matos has extensive experience as an advocate, community organizer and lawyer in the civil and human rights fields. Matos joins Atlantic from the City of New Haven, Connecticut where she served as Deputy Mayor and Administrator of Community Services.In this capacity she oversaw all of the city’s community programs and services and launched a number of programs and initiatives that included prisoner re-entry, youth and immigration integration.

She oversaw the creation of the groundbreaking Elm City Resident Card, an identification card for all city residents, aimed to address public safety concerns among the immigrant population and create opportunity to engage them in civic life.

Matos was previously the Executive Director of JUNTA for Progressive Action, New Haven’s oldest Latino community-based organization, located in a low-income neighborhood with a large immigrant community.She also has extensive experience in criminal justice in the United States and has worked as a federal defender for death sentenced inmates and with the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund and Amnesty International on death penalty and criminal justice issues.

We are delighted to welcome Kica Matos to Atlantic, said Marcia Smith, Senior Vice President of The Atlantic Philanthropies. Kica brings tremendous leadership and a wealth of experience in advocacy on behalf of marginalized people.Her accomplishments in government and the nonprofit sector will be a tremendous asset to Atlantic as we seek to advance the social justice agenda of our Reconciliation & Human Rights Programme in the United States.

The Atlantic Philanthropies is committed to making immediate improvements in the lives of people who need change the most by spending Atlantic’s entire endowment by 2020.It supports lasting change by:

  • Addressing the root causes of social injustice Focusing on advocacy for change rather than filling gaps in services 
  • Funding efforts to challenge policies and institutions that systematically exclude or disadvantage people 
  • Building on the strengths of individuals, organizations, communities and movements to advocate on their own behalf and on behalf of others 
  • Supporting institutions and investing in leaders who can work for progressive change over decades 
  • Working in partnership with government, whenever it can advance Atlantic’s goals and those of the organizations it supports. 

I am thrilled to join The Atlantic Philanthropies to support and build organizations throughout the country that are working to advance a human rights and social justice agenda, said Matos. I believe that movements for social change are sustained by strategic and national organizations that tackle problems in partnership with affected communities.I believe that with Atlantic’s commitment to social justice, significant change can be made in Atlantic’s remaining decade.

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Human Rights & Reconciliation

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