De’Ara Balenger

De’Ara Balenger

Co-Founder
Maestra twitter

De’Ara is a disruptor, creative, and strategist for brands and organizations on social impact, partnerships, philanthropy, and community engagement. She recently co-founded Maestra, a women’s thought leadership cooperative and creative strategy agency.
Prior to Maestra, De’Ara spent over a decade in public service, she worked in the criminal justice system in South Florida, ran the Philadelphia Youth Commission, worked on two Presidential campaigns, and was a political appointee in the Obama Administration at the U.S. Department of State, primarily serving as Special Assistant and then Senior Advisor to Cheryl Mills, Counselor and Chief of Staff to Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton.
In the last presidential election cycle, De’Ara was the Director of Engagement for Hillary for America, where she forged strategic and creative alignments. She was the spark to activating the creative community, leading to creative fundraising opportunities and cemented a roster of millennial influencers, celebrities, activists, entrepreneurs, designers and artists that the campaign tapped into for support.
De’Ara was a National Organizer and Strategic Advisor to the Women’s March,  and named a 2017 Glamour Woman of the Year for her role in the Women’s March. She is co-chair of the Board for the Lower Eastside Girls Club, active supporter of the Women’s Prison Association and a fundraiser for progressive political candidates. 
De’Ara has a B.A. in Black Studies from Macalester College and  J.D. from Thurgood Marshall School of Law at Texas Southern University.
She lives in Brooklyn with her partner, Paola Ramos.