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Knight Foundation Cites '09 Alumnus for Reshaping Philadelphia Politics

'09 alumnus Mike Lee - courtesy of photographer Jeff Fusco Photo courtesy of Jeff Fusco

November 09, 2017

Mike Lee, ’09, is among 13 young Philadelphians on a list of “Who’s Next” in Philadelphia politics sponsored by the Knight Foundation, Billy Penn reported on Nov. 9.

Lee, a co-founder of Philadelphia Lawyers for Social Equity, was cited for his role as campaign chair for Philadelphia District Attorney-elect Larry Krasner.

Krasner won on Nov. 7 despite extremely long odds, given his background as a criminal defense and civil rights attorney who lacks experience in a prosecutor’s office. Yet Krasner bested a field of six fellow Democrats in the primary election before going on to defeat Republican Beth Grossman, an experienced assistant district attorney.

Billy Penn reported that Krasner called upon Lee to chair his campaign soon after deciding to launch his campaign.

Soon after graduating, Lee helped launch PLSE, a non-profit organization that promotes justice for low-income individuals who have been in contact with the criminal justice system through programs that promote fair employment and criminal records expungement.

Lee also serves on the board of the American Civil Liberties Union in Philadelphia and co-chairs the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Minority Bar Committee.