Lourdes A. Rivera is the Senior Vice President, U.S. Programs, at the Center for Reproductive Rights. She leads all of the Center’s U.S. work, including litigation, human rights advocacy, and state, federal, and foreign policy.
Ms. Rivera is a leader in the fields of health law and policy, women’s rights, and sexual reproductive health and rights. Prior to joining the Center in January 2017, Ms. Rivera worked as a Program Officer and then Senior Program Officer at the Ford Foundation, where she managed U.S. and global grants for sexual and reproductive health and rights, using a social justice and human rights approach. She has been a leader in developing women of color organizations in the field and is widely known for putting the concept of intersectionality into practice. Before joining the Ford Foundation in 2006, Ms. Rivera was the Managing Attorney of the Los Angeles office of the National Health Law Program (NHeLP) and specialized in issues relating to Medicaid, managed care, and women’s and children’s health. She created NHeLP’s Initiative to Promote Access to Reproductive Health Care for Low-Income Women, which she directed for more than 10 years. Prior to NHeLP, she worked in Washington D.C. as a Senior Associate with the Children’s Defense Fund, Health Division and as a Georgetown Women’s Law and Public Policy Fellow with the National Women’s Law Center.
In addition to NHeLP, Ms. Rivera serves on the Board of the Brush Foundation. She is a co-founder and former chair of the Advisory Board of California Latinas for Reproductive Justice, a former co-chair of the American Bar Association’s Health Rights and Bioethics Committee of the Individual Rights and Responsibilities Section, and a former chair of the Board of the National Women’s Health Network. She taught a graduate level course in Health and Human Rights at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, where she is an adjunct Professor.
Ms. Rivera has a J.D. from Yale Law School and a B.A. in Latin American Studies from Yale University.