Leah McElrath is a writer, activist, and communications consultant.
She writes about the intersections of U.S. and international politics, media, human rights, human behavior, and psychology. She grew up in Texas and South Carolina and has participated in political and human rights activism throughout her life.
As a freelance writer, Ms. McElrath’s work has been published by Newsweek, Huffington Post, Salon, and Shareblue Media. In addition to writing, Ms. McElrath engages in strategic communications and crisis reputation management consulting. Her clients have included a U.S. congressional campaign and small business owners being targeted by politically-motivated attacks.
In 2017, Ms. McElrath was a Senior Writer and Director of Social Media for Shareblue Media. As director of its social media, she tripled the outlet’s Twitter following in less than six months and created a sustained, multi-fold increase in traffic from Twitter to the website, sometimes exceeding 30% of total daily traffic. During the period of her management, the outlet’s social media metrics such as growth and engagement consistently surpassed those of all other online news outlets.
From 2006-2013, Ms. McElrath served as Managing Partner of Renna Communications, a public interest communication firm that successfully shaped the national narrative on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender issues. In that role, she wrote strategic communication plans and, for client attribution, articles, editorials, and letters-to-the-editor that were published in every major U.S. media outlet, including the New York Times and the Washington Post. In 2003, she worked with the LGBTQ television news magazine In the Life, as an associate producer for an episode called “Violent Opposition.”
Her background as a social worker and psychotherapist specializing in trauma spans two decades and includes running a successful private practice in NYC, serving as a therapist at a nationally-recognized psychiatric facility (Sheppard Pratt in Baltimore, MD), and investigating reports of child abuse and neglect for the Department of Human Services in Washington, DC.
Ms. McElrath earned a Bachelor’s degree magna cum laude from Smith College in 1985, with a major in Economics and a minor in International Relations, and studied International Relations for one year at the London School for Economics and Political Science. She was awarded a Master of Social Work degree from Smith College School for Social Work in 1993.
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