Senior Director for Federal Strategies
Carlton Eley is Senior Director for Federal Strategies. He comes to Race Forward following a long career of encouraging planning and policy solutions that are responsive to the needs of underserved communities and vulnerable populations. Prior to joining Race Forward, Carlton worked at the Miami Valley Regional Planning Commission as Regional Equity Initiative Manager. From 2016 to 2019, Carlton completed multiple projects that served to re-energize the American Planning Association’s focus on advancing equity, including chairing the Social Equity Task Force.
Carlton is a former civil servant whose career with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) spanned twenty years. He was the first urban planner hired by the Office of Environmental Justice at EPA. Carlton distinguished himself as an accomplished expert on the topic of equitable development while working for the federal government. He managed national workshops; conducted community technical assistance; and published multiple articles that explore the intersection of equity and community planning.
Carlton was named the 2021 Sojourner Truth Fellow for Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Michigan. In 2003, Carlton participated in the Ian Axford (New Zealand) Fellowship in Public Policy sponsored by Fulbright New Zealand. Carlton has a MS in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Iowa as well as a BA in Sociology/Social Work Curriculum from Elizabeth City State University (ECSU).