Rachel Gilmer is a Black feminist organizer with over 10 years of experience in advocacy, programs, leadership development, research and writing on issues of racial and social justice. In July 2015, Rachel joined the Dream Defenders as the Chief of Strategy. Rachel graduated from Vassar College in 2010 with a degree in American Culture and Africana Studies. As a fourth year student, she received an award for her thesis, a critical analysis of the rise of Barack Obama as both an emerging hero of the African Diaspora and the new face of American hegemonic power. Rachel has also organized on issues of racial and social justice in a variety of settings, including schools, prisons, community based organizations and government. Most recently, she served as Director of Leadership for the Portland African American Leadership Forum.