Drug Policy Action Board

Derek Hodel – Board President

Derek Hodel

Derek is Board President for Drug Policy Action and a longtime social justice activist and nonprofit executive. He is currently Senior Program Advisor at Physicians for Human Rights. 

For the past 30 years, Derek has held a variety of senior positions for HIV and drug policy organizations in New York and Washington, D.C., and operated a consulting practice serving foundation, government, and nonprofit social service organizations. 

Christine Downton

Christine is former Vice Chairman and Founding Partner of Pareto Partners, an asset manager, bought by Mellon Financial Corp in 2004. 

She is currently Chair of The Learning Trust and The Trust Connection (South African NGO’s). 

David Lewis

David Lewis recently passed away. We are grateful for his years of service. See his obituary here.

David was Professor Emeritus of Medicine and Community Health and the Donald G. Millar Distinguished Professor of Alcohol and Addiction Studies at Brown University. In 1982, he founded Brown’s Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies, which he directed until 2000. 

He was the former Chairman of the Board of Directors of the United States’ National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence. He was also the former Executive Director of the Association for Medical Education and Research in Substance Abuse and was the founder and a member of the Board of Directors of Physicians and Lawyers for National Drug Policy. 

Kenneth T. Monteiro

Ken retired in 2019 as vice president, secretary and general counsel of the Ford Foundation, where he worked in various roles over 23 years.  
Prior to joining the Ford Foundation, he was an Associate at Debevoise & Plimpton. He was previously on the boards of Philanthropy New York, the Bronx Academy of Arts and Dance, the New York City Gay and Lesbian Anti-Violence Project, the Innovation Center for Community and Youth Development and the Lesbian and Gay Law Association Foundation of Greater New York. 

Susan Kane

Susan is the Interim General Counsel for Drug Policy Action and Drug Policy Alliance. She is also a member of the Board of Directors of Human Rights Watch and co-chairs its Policy Committee.  In addition, Susan co-chairs Human Rights Watch’s New York Committee and sits on advisory committees for HRW’s US Program and Women’s Rights Division. Susan was formerly a Board member of The Door, a youth development organization in New York City.  

Susan previously worked as a commercial litigation attorney, most recently at Latham & Watkins.  In addition, she served as a clerk with the Hon. Richard K. Eaton at the United States Court of International Trade. She received her B.A. from the University of Wisconsin and her J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School. She lives in New York City with her two daughters.