FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DATE: Monday, Nov. 13, 2023
CONTACT: [email protected]
New York, NY — Today, the National Institute for Reproductive Health (NIRH) and its Action Fund (NIRH AF) announced social impact leader and veteran political pundit, Aisha Mills, as interim president in the wake of the sudden passing of Andrea Miller, the organization’s former president. Mills will serve as interim president while the boards of directors begin a nationwide search for the permanent NIRH and NIRH AF president.
Mills joined the NIRH AF Board of Directors in 2019 and brings with her more than two decades of federal policy, non-profit leadership, and political experience. In the span of her career, Mills has served at the helm of organizations including the LGBTQ Victory Fund and Institute and the Congressional Black Caucus Political Action Committee; led policy initiatives at think tanks, including the Center for American Progress; and staffed political campaigns from Louisiana and Texas to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. Mills founded Mills Strategies where she has advised on public health policy strategies like obtaining FDA approval for the first over-the-counter birth control regimen. Her wide array of experience across political, policy, and communications will provide NIRH and its Action Fund with a steady hand while it moves into a new chapter of state and local reproductive freedom advocacy.
Statement from Aisha Mills, interim president, National Institute for Reproductive Health and the National Institute for Reproductive Health Action Fund:
“It is my honor and privilege to support the talented and indomitable teams at NIRH and its Action Fund. Each one of the staff meant the world to Andrea and shares in her uncompromising approach to just and equitable reproductive health and rights advocacy. During the boards’ search for the next president, I am proud to lead us through the transition by offering continued stability in the important programs NIRH and its Action Fund are executing across more than 20 states in partnership with advocates on the ground.
“As a Black, queer woman, I know the history of state and local policies all too often marginalize people who share my identities. That is why the work of NIRH and its Action Fund has been personally important. We know, despite our grief over Andrea’s sudden passing, now is the time to keep the momentum for reproductive freedom — including abortion access, contraception, and birth equity — moving into 2024. May Andrea’s legacy live on through each of us engaged in the work she loved so much.”
Statement from Abby Schumer, board president, National Institute for Reproductive Health and Daniel Gonzales, board president, National Institute for Reproductive Health Action Fund:
“As board colleagues and organizational leaders, we are grateful to Aisha for stepping into this role during an unexpected leadership transition. She will offer stability and support while the board engages in a thoughtful and careful search for the next president.
“Andrea was a visionary leader who built this organization, its leadership team, and its board with care. We have the utmost confidence that Aisha, in collaboration with the NIRH and NIRH AF team, will move the organization forward, carrying on Andrea’s bold legacy across reproductive freedom work nationwide. We are proud of the entire NIRH team for their steadfast commitment to just and equitable policies, even during this time of mourning. Together, with Aisha’s steady hand and a new future president, we look forward to seeing Andrea’s forward thinking vision of a post-Roe era that leaves no one behind.”
As interim president, Mills will be meeting with key stakeholders — foundations, supporters, partners, and elected allies — across the movement to ensure a smooth period of transition. She will also be overseeing the day-to-day operational responsibilities.
The National Institute for Reproductive Health (NIRH) and the National Institute for Reproductive Health Action Fund (NIRH Action Fund) are advocacy groups that fight to protect and advance access to just and equitable reproductive healthcare and build political power for reproductive freedom. We do this by working hand-in-hand with reproductive health, rights, and justice organizations in states and cities across the country to build coalitions, launch campaigns, change policy, and elect candidates who stand up for everyone’s right to control their reproductive lives. For more than four decades, our strategy has been to go on the offensive to pass laws that safeguard reproductive freedom. We work in the communities where change is needed, so the fabric of reproductive freedom becomes harder to tear apart.