Claire Downing


Claire is a seasoned nonprofit and philanthropic professional with a track record of building capacity with communities impacted by the War on Terror, structural Islamophobia, and human rights abuses. Claire is a community builder, connector, educator, advocate, and conflict resolver whose work centers empathy, healing, and creativity.

In her most recent role with the RISE Together Fund (RTF), Claire helped develop and deepen the donor collaborative’s support for Black, African, Arab, Middle Eastern, Muslim, and South Asian (BAMEMSA) communities through innovative programming and grantmaking initiatives. As a Program Officer with RTF, Claire led programming that expanded the capacity of hundreds of BAMEMSA organizers and advocates to connect and learn virtually including on principles of transformative justice and abolition; increased giving to Black and Black Muslim communities including through direct funder education and fundraising; and mobilized funders to combat the many manifestations of Islamophobia.

Outside of work, Claire is a PhD candidate at George Mason University’s Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution researching how counterterrorism programming is eroding local community dynamics and relationships in two U.S. metro areas. In her spare time, Claire is a burgeoning home chef, an animal enthusiast, and nature lover.  Claire is based in the Washington, D.C. area.

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