James Perry is president and CEO of the Winston-Salem Urban League. Perry oversees a 20 person team, advocating for civil rights, employment opportunities, affordable housing, voting rights, health opportunity, food security and assisting nonprofits across 13 North Carolina counties. 

Prior to taking charge of the Urban League, Perry served for 10 years as the Chief Executive Officer of the Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center.  Perry led the Center through hurricane Katrina, the most disastrous hurricane to make landfall in America. Under his leadership, the Center won more than half a billion dollars for victims of discrimination across Louisiana. 

Perry was founder of the Mississippi Gulf Coast Fair Housing Center, testified before Congress eight times and has served on dozens of local, state and national boards and commissions including the National Fair Housing Alliance Board of Directors and the National Low Income Housing Coalition Board of Directors.

Perry is a political science graduate of the University of New Orleans and a graduate of the Loyola University School of Law. Perry and his wife Melissa Harris-Perry are raising two daughters, 2 dogs, 5 ducks, 2 rabbits and 15 chickens in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.