Photo: LinkedIn of Vanessa N. Gonzalez.
Photo: LinkedIn of Vanessa N. Gonzalez.

Vanessa N. Gonzalez is GIFFORDS new Vice President of Government and Political Affairs

Having served in roles including with The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, Gonzalez is taking on a new role within the organization.


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Longtime political and government affairs professional Vanessa N. Gonzalez is joining GIFFORDS, the gun violence prevention organization founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, as its first Vice President of Government and Political Affairs. 

In this new role, Gonzalez is a crucial member of the organization’s executive management team and will oversee its political and government affairs teams, including work on the Hill and in states. 

“Vanessa brings a wealth of invaluable experience to our team. Her dedication to fostering an effective, diverse, and inclusive movement resonates deeply with our mission,” said Peter Ambler, GIFFORDS Co-Founder and Executive Director.

“Ten years after our founding, after passing nearly 550 new state laws and the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, GIFFORDS is still just getting started in taking on the unconscionable epidemic of gun violence. Vanessa will be an instrumental leader in our efforts going forward."

Gonzalez joins GIFFORDS with over 20 years of political and government experience, including in the Obama administration as the Director of Outreach and Engagement in the Office of Legislation and Congressional Affairs for the U.S. Department of Education.

Gonzalez previously worked for the Obama administration, Arizona Governor Napolitano's administration, and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus. She’s also held leadership roles at The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, Southern New Hampshire University, and Planned Parenthood Federation of America. 

She previously served on the board and as chair of The National Latina Institute on Reproductive Justice and fights for equal access to reproductive health for Latina/x communities because all of us should have the power to make informed decisions about our bodies, families, and futures. 

“I am thrilled to join the team at GIFFORDS. The issue of gun violence hits home for so many of us that it must live within and across all issues and political spectrums. The idea that parents drop their children at school with heightened anxiety, that we look for the exits in movie theaters, and have to think twice before taking a walk around our neighborhoods, is something that we can change,” Gonzalez said in a statement. 

“I believe that GIFFORDS has the reputation, the knowledge, and the power to make the change real and I’m ready to get to work in ensuring that elected officials up and down the ballot understand that this is a key issue for all and they can’t ignore us,” she added.


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