Lakeisha Steele (she/her) is CASEL’s vice president of policy. Before joining CASEL, Lakeisha served in the Biden-Harris Administration as the deputy assistant secretary in the Office of Legislation and Congressional Affairs at the Department of Education. Prior to her service in the Biden-Harris Administration, Lakeisha served eight years on Capitol Hill in the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives, most recently as senior education policy advisor on the House Education and Labor Committee, where she led K-12 education policy, including the successful passage of the American Rescue Plan Act, for House Democrats under the leadership of Chairman Bobby Scott (VA-03). Prior to her work on the House Education and Labor Committee, Lakeisha advanced priorities in K-12 and higher education for U.S. Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR1) and the Democratic Whip, United States Senator Richard J. Durbin (D-IL). She spent eight years working in the legal industry performing risk management for law firms. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Western Illinois University and a Master of Public Administration from American University. She is from Kankakee, Illinois, and the beautiful southside of Chicago.
Lakeisha is guided by a key tenet that all children are entitled to equal educational opportunity, which is the heart our nation’s landmark ruling in Brown v. Board of Education, in which the Supreme Court decided that “[i]n these days, it is doubtful that any child may reasonably be expected to succeed in life if he is denied the opportunity of an education. Such an opportunity, where the state has undertaken to provide it, is a right which must be made available to all on equal terms.”