Stories from Our Community

Advocating for Human Rights and Racial Justice

Margaret Huang, an advocate for human rights and racial justice for 25 years, is the president and chief executive officer of the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Throughout her career, Huang has championed social justice and human dignity, advocating against discrimination and oppression in all of its forms. Prior to the Southern Poverty Law Center, Margaret served as the executive director of Amnesty International USA, where she was responsible for leading campaigns to protect the human rights of migrants and refugees, torture survivors, gun violence victims, and activists and protestors across the globe. Under her leadership, the organization developed a number of new initiatives on innovation and learning; inclusion, diversity, equity and accessibility; and monitoring and evaluation, while growing organizational financial resources by more than fifty percent over four years.

Huang has worked with members of Congress on critical pieces of legislation, and she has advocated before the United Nations human rights mechanisms as well as the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. She has published articles and opinion pieces on human rights, and she authored a chapter, “Going global – Appeals to International and Regional Human Rights Bodies,” in Human Rights At Home, by Praeger Publishers (December 2007).

Huang, a Tennessee native, previously served as the executive director of the Rights Working Group, which focused on protecting human rights and civil liberties of communities in the post-September 11 era. She also served as director of the U.S. program at Global Rights, program director of the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Human Rights, program manager at The Asia Foundation, and committee staff for the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee. She received a Master of International Affairs from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service from Georgetown University.