Singleton McAllister Podcast


Ensuring Diversity Through Law

Singleton McAllister: Ep. 7 - There is a huge need for women to get involved in all aspects of civil society. This includes women of color to ensure diversities of genders and races where it matters most. As a child of the segregated south, and daughter of the first Black state's attorney in Maryland, Singleton McAllister shares the varied influences of parents, mentors and elected officials on her career trajectory and commitment to domestic and global social change. In 1996, then-President, Bill Clinton, appointed Singleton as General Counsel of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). During her five-year tenure, she was the chief legal advisor to 72 U.S. missions around the world.

Top Takeaways:

    • Mentoring and fighting for inclusion for the women of color in public and private sectors
    • Learning to be involved in every way that you can and not sit on the sidelines
    • The importance of women seizing every opportunity to get invested in every facet of civil society to ensure diversity

Learn how to rise beyond racism as a woman, empower, support, and mentor others in their career development.

"We all have a role to play in every aspect of life, so branch out, make your mark and make a difference." -B. Allister Singleton

Since 2014, Ms. McAllister has served as Of Counsel at the law firm of Husch Blackwell in Washington, D.C. and is a senior advisor at Husch Blackwell Strategies, where she provides lobbying and government affairs counseling. Singleton McAllister represents companies and trade associations throughout a wide range of industries in matters related to international trade, transportation, energy, and healthcare.

Singleton has held positions as General Counsel for the United States Agency for International Development, Senior Counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on the Budget, and was appointed as Secretary to the Commonwealth of Virginia State Board of Elections in 2015. During her time on Capitol Hill, Singleton developed an extensive background in international development. She is on the Board of Directors of many organizations and received the NACD Directorship 100 recognition.

She helped draft legislation that created the African Development Foundation (USADF); a government agency that supports African-led development and community growth through the provision of seed capital and technical support. She also served as an advisory board member of USADF for 10 years.


Learn why you need to take action and get involved in every way to ensure change happens.

Key Moments:

Singleton narrates her historical experiences with racism growing up in Maryland, her family's history with civil activism, and the job position that gave her a way to change the law [5:30]

She explains the events that led to the formation of Trans-Africa- which was successful in advocacy work in Africa [10:40]

How Singleton has learned to rise above the existing racism during her career in law and instead taken upon herself to mentor women and help them develop their careers [18:20]

How the Me-Too situation affected women back when Singleton worked at Capitol Hill and how they supported each other in Me Too and career development [23:06]

Singleton encourages women to pay attention to public policy, politics, and boardrooms to make a change by getting involved [28:03]


The History Makers.

Husch Blackwell Firm

Alliant Energy Leadership

Leading Minds of Compensation

Anterix Board of Directors

Womens History Board

University of Maryland


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