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Women to Know 2020, Nicoel Venable

Source: iOne Creative Team / other

Nicole Venable


“I’m the rare bird in Washington.” That’s how Nicole Venable describes her distinguished career as a lobbyist.

With over two decades of legislative and policy experience under her belt, Venable worked on Capitol Hill in the House and the Senate. She also worked in the White House under Bill Clinton’s administration and with several associations before landing at Invariant. In her latest role as a lobbyist, Venable provides clients, like Apple and Uber, policy expertise on a variety of issues.

Trailblazing advocacy isn’t new to Venable. As an undergraduate student at Spelman College, she developed an interest in international affairs before the school had a minor in the subject. Her efforts helped launch Spelman’s international affairs minor.

Venable’s interests in international affairs led to frequent trips abroad during her academic career. “After my freshman year, I studied abroad in Mexico. My junior year, I studied abroad in London. For my first year of graduate school, I spent it in Italy,” she told HBCU Highlights.

“I’ve been in Washington since 1992 working in and out of government,” Venable said. Her undeniable work led to her being named a Top Lobbyist by The Hill.“ The particular year that I won in 2018, it was in recognition of the work that I’d done mentoring other lobbyists. One of the things that I did was to establish the Black Girl Magic Network,” she explained.

Black Girl Magic Network (BGMN) builds community, provides mentorship, and supports rising candidates. As of 2020, BGMN has connected over 300 African-American women who work in federal advocacy. Venable has been dedicated to assisting the next generation of Black women achieve their dreams throughout her career. She established the Lady Von scholarship to help Spelman College students study abroad. She also helped launch a weekly immersion program for Spelman students in Washington D.C.

The Newport News, Virginia native holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and a minor in international affairs from Spelman College. Venable graduated with a Master’s degree in American Foreign Policy and International Economics from Johns Hopkins University. She is also a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

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