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James Perry


About James

James H. Perry, J.D.  is president and CEO of the Winston-Salem Urban League. Perry leads a 20-person team across North Carolina’s Triad, advocating for civil rights, employment opportunities, economic opportunities, affordable housing, health, wellness, voting rights, food security, and more. Perry authored the eye-opening State of Black Winston-Salem report, raised nearly $1.4 million, and reorganized the agency’s programs.

Before taking charge of the Winston-Salem Urban League, Perry served for 10 years as the Chief Executive of the Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center.  Perry led the center through hurricane Katrina, the most disastrous hurricane to make landfall in America. Under his leadership, the center won more than half a billion dollars for victims of discrimination across Louisiana.

Perry founded the Mississippi Gulf Coast Fair Housing Center, has testified before Congress eight times, has served on dozens of local, state and national boards and commissions, and has managed political campaigns numbering in the dozens. He currently serves on the National Fair Housing Alliance Board of Directors. Perry and his wife, Dr. Melissa Harris-Perry, own Perry Political Partners Partners were the Perry’s provide strategic political advice to candidates and issue campaigns.

Perry is a political science graduate of the University of New Orleans and Loyola University School of Law. Perry has been a candidate for elected office and served in the leadership of the Orleans Parish Democratic Party.

James and Melissa reside in Winston-Salem, NC,  where they are raising eight chickens, five rabbits, three ducks, two daughters, one dog, and a mother in law.

Download headshots here:

Headshot #1

Headshot #2


Select publications.

Melissa Harris-Perry’s Website.

Winston-Salem Urban League Website.

Perry Political Partners.


You cannot be afraid to speak up and speak out for what you believe. You have to have courage, raw courage.

Congressman John Lewis