Lauren is the Advocacy and Campaigns Manager at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR) — a research and advocacy nonprofit building local power to fight corporate control in communities across America. The Independent Business initiative champions locally owned businesses, leads efforts to fight the unchecked power of corporate giants like Walmart and Amazon, and works to reverse the government policies that work against these small, independent businesses. Lauren executes campaign strategies and manages relationships with allied organizations and coalition partners, including a coalition of more than 40 independent business groups and alliances representing 300,000+ businesses – Small Business Rising – advocating for policy at the federal, state, and local levels.
Prior to ILSR, Lauren worked at organizations including the Trust for Public Land, the Pratt Center for Community Development, and most recently, Lowcountry Local First. Her nearly 10 years at Lowcountry Local First included leading policy and advocacy, government relations, the Good Business Summit, special projects, and acting as the Director of Operations. Lauren’s educational background includes a B.A. from the College of Charleston for Preservation and Planning, and an M.S. from Pratt Institute in City and Regional Planning. Lauren serves on the American Independent Business Alliance Advisory Council and Lowcountry Local First’s Policy Council. She lives in Charleston, South Carolina.