Randy Yohe Published

ACLU-WV Parts Ways With Danielle Walker

Del. Danielle Walker, D-Monongalia, with a transgender flag draped over her shoulders.
Former Del. Danielle Walker, D-Monongalia, with a transgender flag draped over her shoulders.
Perry Bennett/WV Legislative Photography

Former House of Delegates member Danielle Walker of Morgantown is no longer leading the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of West Virginia.

A statement provided by Anne Farmer, ACLU-WV Board of Directors president, notes, “We are unable to provide comment at this time, as this is a personnel matter. We can confirm that Eli Baumwell has been serving as the interim executive director since Sept. 15.”

The organization’s website says Baumwell will continue to serve as ACLU-WV’s chief lobbyist at the West Virginia Legislature. 

An outspoken, progressive Monongalia County Democrat, Walker took the executive director post in April of this year, becoming the first Black woman to hold the position. 

She was elected to the House of Delegates in 2018. With a fiery, church pulpit oratory, Walker often helped lead demonstrations at the Capitol protesting abortion bans and LGTBQ+ issues.

She resigned from the legislature and as vice-chair of the West Virginia Democratic Party to take the ACLU-WV job.

Walker told West Virginia Public Broadcasting when she took the ACLU leadership role that an initial priority would be to make the unaware in West Virginia understand how the ACLU-WV can help people to help themselves. 

“ACLU has done some wonderful things and is still doing wonderful things in our state,” Walker said on April 3. “But we also have some pockets regionally, where some folks don’t even know the mission of ACLU. And so those are the target areas that we’re going to look towards.”

Messages to Walker for comment remained unanswered at the time of publication.