Chief Advocacy Officer
Jennifer Carnig is a senior-level communications professional and award-winning journalist. A member of Spitfire’s leadership team, Jen runs the firm’s New York City office and leads its work on equity, diversity and inclusion. On the client side, she runs the firm’s racial justice and legal advocacy work, with clients including the Ford Foundation, the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, Demos, the Bard Prison Initiative, the Innocence Project and the Leadership Conference for Civil and Human Rights.
Jen joined Spitfire from the New York Civil Liberties Union, New York’s leading civil rights organization, where she served as director of communications for eight years. Under her leadership, the NYCLU created change on issues including stop-and-frisk, solitary confinement, the rights of transgender kids, and education for undocumented youth.
A frequent advocate for working mothers and reproductive rights, Jen went undercover while five months pregnant to expose the misleading and harmful tactics of crisis pregnancy centers. Jen’s City Council testimony and New York Daily News op-ed were quoted in the Second Circuit Court of Appeals decision protecting New Yorkers from these centers.
Jen excels at bringing challenging issues into the mainstream and finding commonsense messaging that unites both the left and the right on the need for action. Her cutting-edge tactics also earned recognition as a Webby Award honoree for Stop and Frisk Watch, the internationally recognized police accountability video app.
Jen began her career as a religion reporter in the San Francisco Bay area before directing communications and media relations at Teach For America and the University of Chicago. She earned her B.A. in journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and her master’s degree in religious studies from the University of Chicago, where she researched and wrote a religious biography of the George W. Bush administration.
From courtrooms to kitchen tables, school houses to church pews, Jen has devoted her career to promoting community and creating a better world. Born and raised in Pittsburgh, she lives in Sunset Park, Brooklyn and sits on the board of the NYU School of Law Policing Project.