|Director of the Domestic Policy Council|
January 10, 2012
|Preceded by||Melody Barnes|
|Director of Intergovernmental Affairs|
January 20, 2009 – January 10, 2012
|Preceded by||Elizabeth Dial|
July 27, 1962 |
Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
|Political party||Democratic Party|
|Alma mater||University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
University of California, Berkeley
Cecilia Muñoz (born July 27, 1962) is director of the White House Domestic Policy Council. Prior to that, she served as the White House Director of Intergovernmental Affairs. A longtime civil rights advocate, she worked as Senior Vice President for the Office of Research, Advocacy and Legislation at the National Council of La Raza (NCLR), a nonprofit organization established to improve opportunities for Hispanic Americans, overseeing advocacy activities that cover issues of importance to immigrants. In 2000, she was named a MacArthur Fellow for her work on civil rights and immigration. Muñoz was featured in several films in the documentary series How Democracy Works Now: Twelve Stories.
Early life and education
Muñoz was born in Detroit, Michigan the youngest of four children. Her parents had moved to the United States from La Paz, Bolivia, so that her father, an automotive engineer, could go to the University of Michigan. When she was three, the family moved to Livonia, a middle-class, predominantly white Detroit suburb. Muñoz attended the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. As a volunteer, she worked as a tutor to Hispanic American inmates at the state prison in nearby Jackson. She earned undergraduate degrees in English and Latin American studies in 1984. Following graduation, Muñoz continued her education at the University of California at Berkeley, where she earned a master's degree.
White House Years
As Director of Intergovernmental Affairs, Muñoz was the Obama Administrations main liaison with state, local, and tribal governments, including the "Big Seven" organizations that represent most state and local officials, including the Council of State Governments, the National Governors Association and the National Conference of State Legislatures. She also co-chaired the White House Task Force on Puerto Rico's Political Status, where her work on that divisive issue was recognized to the point that leaders from different political status stripes celebrated her designation to head the Domestic Policy Council.
|This section requires expansion with: examples and additional citations. (March 2011)|
Muñoz is married to Amit Pandya, a human rights lawyer; they have two daughters.
She was featured in the documentary film Last Best Chance, story twelve of the series How Democracy Work Now, from filmmakers Shari Robertson and Michael Camerini. A cut of the film premiered on HBO in March 2010, under the title The Senator's Bargain.
Muñoz appeared in Mountains and Clouds, story 2 in the series How Democracy Works Now, where she and Frank Sharry discuss being at a potential "watershed moment" for comprehensive immigration reform, in 2001. Additionally, she was featured in Ain't the AFL for Nothin', story seven in the series where she is shown working on a proposal for immigration, in 2003.
- change.gov (26 November 2008). "President-Elect Barack Obama names two new White House staff members" (Press release). Newsroom. Office of the President-elect. Retrieved November 26, 2008.
- Notable Hispanic American Women (1999). "Cecilia Muñoz" (Website). Hispanic Heritage. Gale Biography Resource Center. Retrieved November 26, 2008.
- "Congress Weakens Immigration Policies." Associated Press. December 1, 1997.
- Eversley, Melanie. "A Leading Authority: Detroit Native Speaks Out Proudly for Latino Issues." Detroit Free Press. November 3, 1997.
- Hayward, Brad. "Welfare Reform Has Legal Immigrants Wary." Sacramento Bee. September 4, 1996.
- "Immigrants Add $10 Billion to Economy Annually, Study Says." Washington Times. May 19, 1997.
- McDonnell, Patrick J. "Proposed Cutbacks in Aid Alarm Legal Immigrants." Los Angeles Times. July 30, 1996, p. A1.
- Navarrette, Ruben, Jr. "Groups Ask for Cuts in Immigrants." Arizona Republic. November 11, 1997.
- Sample, Herbert A. "Activists Want Food Stamps Restored to Immigrants." Orange County Register. August 22, 1997, p. A15.
- Sun, Lena H. "White House Queries Activist on Citizenship." Washington Post. March 21, 1997, p. A28.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Cecilia Muñoz.|
- Cecilia Muñoz collected news and commentary at The Washington Post
- Appearances on C-SPAN
- Works by or about Cecilia Muñoz in libraries (WorldCat catalog)