Get To Know Derrick

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Derrick Crowe is a fighter for progressive values and a former small business owner with years of experience in the government and nonprofit sectors.

Derrick is a former staffer for senior Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives and has been up-close-and-personal with the legislative process since the beginning of his professional career. He’s worked for House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, as well as the top Democrats on agriculture (U.S. Rep. Charlie Stenholm, D-Texas) and counterterrorism (U.S. Rep. Adam Smith, D-Wash.), and he knows what it takes to be an effective legislator and advocate for his congressional district.

Derrick is the founder and former co-owner and operator of Mothership Books and Games, a small retail business in Austin focused on geek culture and gaming. His experience with Mothership gives him a hard-won insight into the challenges faced by business owners in Central Texas, and he understands the experience of interacting with government agencies and bureaucracies as a small business operator. He also knows how hard it is in this economy to get new businesses up, running, and making payroll every month.

In the nonprofit sector, Derrick focused on bettering his community and supporting those in crisis, as well as improving government transparency and ethics. As communications director for a local nonprofit attacking the problems of domestic violence, sexual assault, and child abuse, Derrick advocated for services for families in crisis in Central Texas. His proudest moment was helping to lead a successful advocacy effort to win more city funds to process backlogged rape kits, provide justice to survivors of sexual assault, and get serial rapists off the street.

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At the Center for Public Policy Priorities, Crowe supported advocacy efforts on behalf of low- and moderate-income Texans at the State Capitol, working to support legislative agendas that benefit all Texans, not just those at the top. That work followed similar efforts at the Children’s Defense Fund in Washington, D.C.

At Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, Crowe boosted the work of a group known at the time for hard-hitting investigations and actions against Members of Congress and other elites who violated the public trust–targeting violators from both parties. And, when it became clear that new board leadership at CREW would endanger CREW’s bipartisan reputation, Crowe left rather than put party before principles.

Most importantly, Derrick is a father to Henry and a husband to Laurie. His most important goal is to have a good answer for when his son asks him, “Dad, what did you do?” during these turbulent times in our country.

Derrick was born in Amarillo and grew up in Sunray, a small town in the Texas Panhandle. He is a graduate of Texas Tech University in Lubbock. The Crowes are members of St. George’s Episcopal Church in Austin.