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Staff Profile

Tara Magner

Senior Program Officer

Tara Magner is a Senior Program Officer in the Policy Research area of U.S. Programs. 

She joined the MacArthur Foundation after serving as Senior Counsel to the Chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont, from 2009 to 2012.  Her issue responsibilities on the Committee included immigration, refugee protection, human rights, and national security matters.  After the 2008 election, Magner was a member of President Obama’s Transition Policy Working Group on Immigration. She also served from 2007 to 2009 as a Commissioner on the American Bar Association’s Commission on Immigration.  From 2006 to 2009, Magner was the Director of Policy at the National Immigrant Justice Center in Chicago.  She previously served as a Counsel and Professional Staff Member to Senator Leahy on the Committee on the Judiciary. During that time (2001-2006), she handled matters relating to immigration, terrorism, human rights, Freedom of Information Act, and government secrecy.

Earlier in her career, Magner served as Deputy Director of the Winston Foundation, awarding grants on international human rights, refugee protection, and conflict resolution.  She has published articles with MIT Press, the International Journal of Refugee Law, and the Georgetown Immigration Law Journal.  Magner received her undergraduate degree at Wesleyan University and her law degree at Georgetown University Law Center.

Tara Magner works on the following MacArthur programs and projects:

Policy Research


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