Dr. Valerie Rawlston Wilson

Vice President of Research and Chief Economist
Office Phone: 
(202) 898-1604

Dr. Valerie Rawlston Wilson is the Urban League’s lead researcher and economist and is responsible for planning and directing the organization’s research agenda and shaping the organization’s national economic policy.  Dr. Wilson chairs the National Urban League’s Research Council and is also a member of the National Urban League President’s Council of Economic Advisors.  She manages annual production of the National Urban League Equality IndexTM and has served as Managing Editor, Associate Editor and as a contributing author for the National Urban League’s annual signature publication, The State of Black America, and is also responsible for the creation of a number of relevant publications exploring the status of blacks across a variety of areas, including The Hidden Swing Voters, The State of Urban Health and The State of the Black Middle Class.  Dr.Wilson also staffs the Affliate Jobs Policy Task Force that promotes an ongoing dialogue between Urban League affiliate CEOs and the Washington Bureau around issues related to workforce development policy. 

Dr. Wilson also provides regular analysis of U.S. labor market trends and has written and spoken extensively on various issues impacting economic and racial inequality in the United States.  In addition, she has authored a number of publications on topics related to these areas and has appeared in print, television and radio media, including C-SPAN’s Washington Journal, National Public Radio, USA Today and Time magazine.

Dr. Wilson earned her PhD from the Department of Economics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.   Her fields of specialization include labor economics, racial and economic inequality, and economics of higher education.