Susie Emmert named Vice President and Chief Advocacy Officer at Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota

Susie Emmert
Thursday, December 20, 2018

(December 20, 2018) – Susie Emmert has been named Vice President and Chief Advocacy Officer for Saint Paul-based Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota (LSS), which is among the largest human service organizations statewide. Emmert will oversee state and national advocacy initiatives for the organization to improve services and public policies that support full and abundant lives for all Minnesotans.

“We’re proud of Susie’s advocacy work in Minnesota and nationally,” said Jodi Harpstead, CEO of Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota. “Her energetic resolve and ability to galvanize support for important policy issues that promote health, stability and a full life in community for all Minnesotans is really inspiring. She has clearly earned her stripes and we are looking forward to her strong leadership on our executive team.” 

Emmert joined LSS nine years ago as an Advocacy Manager, primarily to connect people served by the organization with legislators to share their personal stories and how public policies affected their lives so that elected officials could make more informed decisions.

Most recently, as Senior Director of Advocacy, Emmert helped organize and lead the “This Is Medicaid” coalition in Minnesota to protect Minnesotans from cuts to their healthcare. She also provided leadership for the Best Life Alliance in Minnesota to improve the lives of people with disabilities and strengthen the workforce that supports them, and has been deployed to other Lutheran organizations nationally to help them advance their advocacy initiatives. Before joining LSS, Emmert worked directly with individuals with traumatic brain injuries, mental illness and other disabilities. 

She has received numerous awards for her extensive and tenacious advocacy work, including Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota’s CEO Leadership Award given to one of 2,300 employees annually.

Emmert earned her Bachelor of Social Work degree at the Ohio University in Athens and her Master of Social Work degree with a focus on Program Development, Policy and Administration at Augsburg University in Minneapolis. 

Since 2011, she has served as an adjunct instructor of Public Policy and History of Social Welfare at Augsburg, and more recently at St. Thomas and St. Catherine’s universities. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Minnesota Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities.

Emmert lives with her son in the Summit Hill neighborhood of Saint Paul, Minnesota.

Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota began in 1865 when a Lutheran pastor and his congregation opened an orphanage for children near Red Wing in southeastern Minnesota. Today, with 2,300 employees and 8,000 volunteers, Lutheran Social Service helps one in 65 Minnesotans through services that inspire hope, change lives and build community. Statewide, the organization seeks to foster safe and supportive homes for children, restore health and wellness in families, empower people with disabilities to live the lives they imagine, and promote health, independence and quality of life for older adults. For comprehensive information about the work of Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota, visit