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Derek Perkinson

Derek Perkinson

Executive Director, Youth Construct

Derek Perkinson is the Founder and CEO of D Perk Consulting Group, LLC, Executive Director for Youth Construct, and the former New York State Field Director and Crisis Director for the National Action Network (NAN). At his time at NAN, he was intimately involved in policy and legislation, justice advocacy, policy and grassroots campaigns and organizing efforts throughout the state of New York, as well as the New York State chapters and coordinated national crisis concerns. Derek specializes in Crisis Management and large-scale field operations. Derek is a strategist and has worked on numerous grass campaigns, such as pushing for the renewal of the Affordable Connectivity Program, to impact positive change in our communities.

Mr. Perkinson is a native New Yorker, born in Harlem and raised between Harlem and the Bronx. He is a product of the New York City Archdiocese School System first attending St. Charles Catholic school in Harlem and then graduating from Cardinal Hayes High School for Boys. Upon graduating high school, he attended SUNY Farmingdale to study mortuary science. Derek began his adult career in advertising, sales, and marketing, using these skills and wealth of knowledge and experience in the areas of Political Campaign Coordination, political consulting, Large Scale Field Operation Projects (ERAP), Criminal Justice Reform, Voting Rights, Immigrant Rights, Economic Justice, Climate Policy (the Earth Act), 2020 Census Complete Count Advocacy, and Civic/Community organizing. Derek has led and worked with coalitions to bring the NYS John R. Lewis Voting Rights law to NYS. In the legislative year 2023, through NAN, Derek has advocated and helped pass five (5) bills in NYS. He has moderated and served as a panelist on numerous occasions to speak up against discriminatory practices, Census 2020, criminal justice reform, climate justice, voting rights, and among many others. As the Crisis Director, he serviced hundreds of calls per week, throughout the country. Often providing staffing for Rev. Sharpton at events, Derek has been the driving force behind the elected official turnout, at the annual “NAN King Day”, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas, and NAN Annual Policy Convention events. Derek has worked to lessen the density of drug treatment centers in Harlem in partnership with the Greater Harlem Coalition and has led the successful five (5) borough NAN Community Day Events in partnership with the NYPD CAU in 2021. He has seen the very best of things and things that would break your heart.  Through it all, he has maintained a deep commitment and affection to serving people and his community. Derek has won numerous leadership awards, citations and proclamations from the NYPD, New York City Councilmembers, NYS Assemblymembers, NYS Senators and Congressmembers. NAN Women’s Auxiliary recently named Derek it’s “Man of the Year” award winner in 2022. Derek is a recent breast cancer survivor and advocates for Black and Brown communities to get screened and cancer awareness education. Derek was recently selected to be brand ambassador for Stand Tall AFC, a group that advocates for survivors of breast cancer and the importance of getting medical checks routinely. In August 2023, Derek was chosen to be the First Ever Male Breast Cancer Survivor Spotlight Speaker for the American Cancer Society and Making Strides Against Breast Cancer, to share his journey and to spread awareness.  In September 2023, Derek was selected by the American Cancer Society to walk in the Bronx Fashion Show, as he defines the words, “the Bronx Strong”.

Derek is adept at nonprofit reorganization, programming, and fundraising. Mr. Perkinson is a political strategist with a strong knowledge base and his expertise in business and political strategy makes him a community resource.  He is the Vice President of the Black Cannabis Business Alliance, to advocate for social equity and career training. He serves on Harlem Community Board 10, where he is the Vice Chair for the Personnel Committee, and sits on the Parks and Recreation and Public Safety Committees.  Derek is the 2nd Vice President of the African American Day Parade Breakfast Committee, now in their 30th year. He is a strong advocate with S.T.O.P. (Surveillance Technology Oversight Project), which calls for transparency from law enforcement when storing and amassing facial recognition data and the usage of this data.  He has received numerous awards, citations, and certificates. Served as a BRACE Mentor for the College and Community Fellowship, 2022.

Derek Perkinson is married to beautiful Nakia Perkinson, and they are the proud parents of five children, Derek, Jr., Mario, Ezel, Sharrod, and Charron and seven grandchildren, and five Godchildren.  His favorite quote is, “The Moral Arc of the Universe Always bends towards Justice”.

 – Dr. MLK, Jr.






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