WASHINGTON, DC — Adina Ellis Cato has joined FWD.us as the Deputy Communications Director, where she will lead criminal justice communications efforts for the organization. Cato brings nearly 20 years of experience in strategic communications, media relations, and event production across a wide variety of sectors and organizations to her new role, where she will also serve as a member of the senior staff team.
“We’re absolutely thrilled to welcome Adina to the FWD.us team,” said FWD.us President Todd Schulte. “Her passion for criminal justice reform and deep well of experience are wonderful additions to our work and to the critical fight to reduce incarceration and keep families together.”
Cato most recently served as the Deputy Director of Strategic Communications at the American Civil Liberties Union. In this capacity, she led communications efforts for the organization’s criminal justice work, including the Campaign for Smart Justice—a nationwide initiative designed to reduce the U.S. jail and prison population significantly. She was also a member of the organization’s Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Council. Throughout her career, Cato has also served in management and leadership positions at the International AIDS Society (IAS), Corporate Council on Africa (CCA), National Football League (NFL), Widmeyer Communications, and the United Negro College Fund. Cato also worked with Essence Communications Partners, devising communication strategies for Essence magazine, as well as the 10th Anniversary of the Essence Music Festival.
Cato holds a political science degree from Spelman College. She lives in Washington, D.C. with her husband Bobby and son Cassius.