Diversity Woman Magazine

WIN 2018

Leadership and Executive Development for women of all races, cultures and backgrounds

Issue link: http://diversitywoman.epubxp.com/i/927951

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d i v e r s i t y w o m a n . c o m W i n t e r 2 0 1 8 D I V E R S I T Y W O M A N 15 Nicole Isaac Opportunity for All Power Suit By Pat Olson Y ou may have heard the phrase "I didn't choose my career, it chose me." For Nicole Isaac, head of US public policy at LinkedIn, that couldn't be more true. Growing up in a tough neigh- borhood in the Bronx, she saw firsthand what opportunity, or its lack can mean. She had the good fortune to receive a scholar- ship and attend private school, where she had only to compare her classmates' aspi- rations with those of the children in her neighborhood to see that where you live can make a big difference in your future. Isaac vowed early in life to bring opportu- nity to the underserved. After receiving a bachelor's degree in English and African American studies from Brown University, she obtained a law degree at Uni- versity of Pennsylvania Law School, where she gained a solid framework for understanding civil and human rights. In a dual program between Pennsylvania Law School and Columbia University, Isaac received a master's degree in international relations and affairs. She then completed a master of law in international human rights from the University of Oxford. Isaac spent a decade in federal govern- ment in increasingly responsible posi- tions, and today, as part of her job, she educates government and other groups on LinkedIn's Economic Graph, which identifies trends and digitally maps the We Mean Business > global workforce with an eye to providing more employment opportunities worldwide. Diversity Woman: How did your up- bringing affect your career? Nicole Isaac: Because my mother made education a core value in our family, I studied hard and put school first. As a re- sult, I received a scholarship to a private school through Prep for Prep, a leadership program in New York. I decided to try to create access to opportunities for every- one who came from places like I did, and I went to law school to pursue that dream. Following that, I worked in South Africa to further solidify my goal. In South Africa, I clerked at the Consti- tutional Court, the highest court of the country, for the deputy chief justice. My job was providing advice and recommen- dations on comparative international le- gal systems and ways in which these could add value when designing a democracy. en I returned to the United States and worked in the federal government. My last job there was deputy director of legislative affairs in the Office of the Vice President, in which I acted as liaison between Con- gress and the White House. In that role I also assisted in the implementation of the economic recovery plan after the 2008 recession. rough a series of jobs in my 10 years in Washington, I learned how politics, along with the processes and policies en- acted by our government, affect citizens' lives. I joined LinkedIn roughly three years ago as head of Economic Graph policy partnerships, a role that allowed me to work to help those who are underserved. DW: What does your role at LinkedIn entail? NI: I manage our efforts related to US pub- lic policy, which includes local, state, and federal engagements, and the ways in which we as a company operate, especially with LinkedIn's Nicole Isaac believes that the power of connectivity can change both your world and ours

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