Maxim Thorne

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Maxim Thorne
Maxim thorne hrc sized.jpg
Senior Vice-President of the NAACP
In office
1 October 2008 – Incumbent
Personal details
Born 24 November 1964
Georgetown, Guyana
Nationality American

Maxim Thorne is an American lawyer and civil rights advocate who teaches on philanthropy at Yale University. He is the founder of JusticeInvestor, a litigation crowdfunding company focused on environmental and social justice cases. He became a Senior Vice-President of the NAACP in 2008,[1][2] where he helped establish the first LGBT Task Force. Thorne helped argue Abbott v. Burke on behalf of Head Start and the NAACP.[3][4][5]

Early life and education[edit]

Thorne was born in Georgetown, Guyana on 24 November 1964. He spent his early years in Nassau, Bahamas along with his sister, Katya, attending St. Thomas Moore's Primary School, until he was 10, then returned to Guyana where he attended St. Margaret's Primary School and Queen's College.[6] His mother, Eslyn Thorne, who is of mixed Indian and Chinese descent, met his father, who is also multi-ethnic (Black, Scottish, Indian and Chinese), while in Georgetown, Guyana. Thorne immigrated to the United States in 1984.[citation needed] He is the great grandson of Alfred A. Thorne, a human rights advocate and educator in British Guiana.[1]

Thorne holds a bachelor's degree with cum laude honours in economics and political science from Yale College[6][6][7][1] and a JD from Yale Law School.[8]


In 2012 he taught "Philanthropy in Action" at Yale, where a gift by an anonymous donor allowed students to donate $100,000 to charitable causes.[9]

Thorne was appointed Executive Vice-President of the Paley Center for Media in 2013.[10]

Thorne was active in the 2008 Obama presidential campaign, serving on the Finance and Policy Committees, LGBT Leadership Council and African American Leadership Council. He resigned from the LGBT Council after a personal email exchange criticising the Clinton campaign became public.[11][12]

Previously[when?] he was chief operating officer at Human Rights Campaign, and Vice-President at Human Rights Campaign Foundation.[13]

Formerly,[when?] Thorne was Executive Director of New Jersey Head Start, an association of all the Head Start Programs in New Jersey. While at the NJHSA, he oversaw the implementation of Abbott v. Burke, the New Jersey Supreme Court decision that mandated parity in funding and Whole School Reform. Thorne had represented Head Start, the New Jersey NAACP State Conference, and daycare centres in later litigation (Abbott VIII).[14] For its efforts the agency won the first annual "Lawyer as Problem Solver Award" of the American Bar Association in 2002.[15]


  1. ^ a b c "NAACP PRESIDENT BUILDS STRONG LEADERSHIP TEAM". 25 September 2008. Retrieved 13 May 2017. [dead link]
  2. ^ Metro Weekly. 19 February 2009 Retrieved 29 April 2011.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  3. ^ "A Truce in New Jersey's School War". The New York Times. 9 February 2002. Retrieved 29 April 2011. 
  4. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 28 November 2010. Retrieved 5 April 2010. 
  5. ^ Newlin, Eliza (2 August 2010). "National Journal Online – Education Experts – Contributor Profile". Retrieved 29 April 2011. 
  6. ^ a b c "PROGRAM.indd" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 17 March 2007. Retrieved 29 April 2011. 
  7. ^ "AYA Blue Print :: Black Alumni Gather in New York". 17 June 2005. Retrieved 29 April 2011. 
  8. ^ "The League". Retrieved 29 April 2011. 
  9. ^ Shelton, Jim (1 January 2012). "Yale class gets $100G gift to donate to others (video)". New Haven Register. Retrieved 14 October 2015. 
  10. ^ "The Paley Center for Media Announces Three Key Executive Appointments (Press Release)". Paley Center for Media. 10 June 2013. Retrieved 14 October 2015. 
  11. ^ "'Live with Dan Abrams' for March 12 - msnbc tv - Morning Joe". MSNBC. 13 March 2008. Retrieved 29 April 2011. 
  12. ^ Akanimo Uwan. National Journal. Retrieved 29 April 2011.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  13. ^ BBC News Archived 28 January 2006 at the Wayback Machine.
  14. ^ "Poverty Law". Poverty Law. 22 February 2002. Archived from the original on 13 May 2006. Retrieved 29 April 2011. 
  15. ^ James, George (15 December 2002). "ACTUAL ARTICLE TITLE BELONGS HERE!". The New York Times. Retrieved 29 April 2011. 

External links[edit]