Nicole Ellis is a grassroots community organizer and lifelong resident of Nashville, Tennessee. She serves as the Executive Assistant and Strategic Planning Coordinator for Gideon's Army Grassroots Army for Children. Based in North Nashville, the nonprofit seeks to eliminate the root causes of the school to prison pipeline, save children from death and incarceration, and guide them on a secure path to success.
Nicole received an Associate of Applied Science degree in Business and Information Systems from Nashville State Community College in 2006. She was moved to become involved in grassroots community organizing after attending a Trayvon Martin rally hosted by Gideon's Army and other community groups in 2013. Since then her work with Gideon's Army has pioneered efforts for citywide adoption of Restorative Justice based practices in schools, courts and the community; as well as using innovative community-based approaches to violence prevention, conflict resolution and healing.
By organizing around various community issues, Nicole has been able to collaborate with other grassroots organizations and coalitions. As a core member of the Community Oversight Now coalition, Nicole worked on the successful campaign which established Nashville's first independent Community Oversight Board for the Metro Nashville Police Department in 2018. She is also a founding member of the Justice for Jocques Coalition and was the lead organizer for an at-large council member campaign in 2019.
When she's not organizing in the community, Nicole enjoys traveling and spending time with her husband and their children. She also operates a small family run BBQ business along with her husband and brother.