Advancement Project California The Best Resistance is Our Collective Success

Katie Smith

Director of Communications

With 18 years of communications and marketing experience focused on impact and sustainability, Smith has earned a reputation as a change agent with a mind for innovation and an effective process to drive results.

Specializing in strategic communications, message development and campaign management, Katie oversees the Communications Department, which focuses on multifaceted programmatic and organizational activities in print, in person and online.

Katie began her career at a young age in the late ‘90s, as part of a team that launched the successful e-commerce site for Frontier Natural Products Co-op. Her future endeavors included leading marketing (acquisition and retention to advertising) for some of the biggest media companies.

As Director of Digital Communications for the ACLU National (, she restructured the digital department and helped to reposition communications for the organization. She worked on issues ranging from racial equity and justice; to the protection of voting, women, immigration, privacy and LGBT rights; to ending mass incarceration and the death penalty. Highlights include developing and overseeing the 2012 highly targeted voting rights advertising campaign, the ACLU Liberty Watch campaign, which put candidates in check on their civil liberties record. She also oversaw the campaign to end DOMA, which won an AAPC Gold Pollie Award. The data informed, a public education platform and campaign focused on unfair drug sentencing, which launched at SXSW. It was well-cited by media and was used as a tool to change local and state policy.

Smith has worked with many not-for-profits and local government, including but not limited to USA for UNHR, Calvert Foundation, Liberty Hill Foundation, NARAL, Common Sense Media, The California Endowment and the City of Los Angeles Vision Zero campaign.