Kareem Crayton is a widely cited and internationally respected scholar, expert and consultant whose work centers on the intersection of law, politics, and race. He is the only academic in the United States with formal training in law and political science whose primary work explores the relationship between race and politics in representative institutions. The insights and analyses from his research have distinguished him as a leading voice in the academy and key player in public policy debates. His commentary, insight, and analysis regularly appear both in highly-ranked academic publications along with major media outlets including The New York Times, PBS, and Fox News.
A native of Montgomery, Alabama, Kareem is a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard College (Government) and holds a Ph.D. in Political Science as well as a law degree from Stanford University. He is a recipient of a National Foundation Graduate Fellowship in support of his graduate studies.
Kareem’s academic work addresses the varied effects of state-sanctioned racial exclusion and discrimination on campaigns, elections, and governance in the political system. His publications employ interdisciplinary methods to examine ongoing controversies ranging from voter polarization, ballot measures, electoral campaigning, legislative caucus behavior, to partisan competition. The work also engages these questions on a global scale, including the formation of constitutional systems that respect racial and ethnic diversity.
Before entering the academy, Kareem served as a foreign law clerk on the Constitutional Court for the Republic of South Africa and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit. He has served on faculties including Harvard, Vanderbilt, the University of Southern California, the University of Alabama, and the University of North Carolina.
Kareem currently is managing partner of Crimcard Consulting services, a firm that he founded to assist communities globally in their effort to seek political efficacy and equality. Based on his scholarly work, Kareem has helped shape the development of election law and policy. Kareem has provided expert advice in election disputes in almost a dozen states, including California, Pennsylvania, and North Carolina. He led a group of academics who submitted a widely cited amicus brief to the U.S. Supreme Court in the case Shelby County v. Holder (a test of the temporary provisions of the 1965 Voting Rights Act). He was contributing amicus counsel in the U.S. Supreme Court for the Congressional Black Caucus in the Voting Rights Act lawsuit Bartlett v. Strickland as well as co-counsel to the Congressional Tri-Caucus (Congressional Black, Hispanic, and Asian Pacific American Caucuses) in Northwest Austin Municipal Utility District Number One (NAMUDNO) v. Holder, another seminal voting rights case. Kareem has also developed an online educational tool called The Redistricting Game to increase public knowledge about the complex rules governing the redistricting process.