Nichelle Henderson is a college faculty and union organizer that advocates for and builds capacity around the issues of education, labor, women’s reproductive health and political empowerment. She is a former middle school classroom teacher. Currently employed at California State University Los Angeles, Nichelle is a Faculty Advisor and Clinical Field Supervisor with the Cal State TEACH teacher preparation program; where she instructs and provides support for new and pre-service teacher candidates working toward multiple subjects teaching credentials. Led by the desire to be the voice of the under-represented, the strength to stand strong for what she believes in and a passion for defending worker’s rights, she is actively involved with labor. As an active member of the California Faculty Association, she has served as Faculty Rights Chair of the Los Angeles chapter; having led a team that represents bargaining unit faculty, coaches, counselors and librarians in filing and responding to contractual grievances and Title IX complaints and currently serves as the chapter Vice President and Chair of the Political Action Committee. She is also a member of the statewide bargaining and representation teams. In 2016, Nichelle was recognized as Lecturer of the Year.
Nichelle’s love of politics and labor activism led her to complete the Emerge CA political training program in 2015, the Los Angeles African American Women’s Public Policy Institute and in 2018 and the LA County Federation of Labor’s Civic Leadership Academy. She is a member of several Democratic Clubs and is an elected delegate to the Los Angeles County Democratic Central Committee representing AD66, serving as a Co-Chair of the Credentials Committee. In 2018, Nichelle was recognized as the LACDP female Democrat of the Year representing AD 66 and by Assembly member Al Muratsuchi as a Woman of Distinction. In 2019, Nichelle was appointed to the Los Angeles County Quality and Productivity Commission as a labor commissioner. As the 1st Vice President of the Los Angeles African American Women PAC, she chairs the Political Involvement and Issues Committees striving to increase voter participation, raise community awareness and get qualified Black women and women of color elected to public office through education and civic engagement.
Nichelle, the oldest of three children, was born in LA County and raised in the unincorporated West Athens area. Her parents, dedicated union members, instilled in her a strong work ethic and a stance to fearlessly stand firm in her values. Her father, a retired automotive mechanic is a graduate of LA Trade Tech College and Cal State University Los Angeles and her mother, now deceased, a retired nurse attended LA Southwest College. Nichelle is a Gold Tie alumnae of St. Mary’s Academy in Inglewood, CA, an alumni of Cal State Los Angeles and Chapman Universities and is a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
Nichelle is married to Gardena City Mayor Pro Tem, Dr. Mark E. Henderson. They have four adult children and a granddaughter.