Rahman Branch is the District's first director of the Office of African American Affairs. He joined Mayor Muriel Bowser’s team in February of 2015; his office serves as the liaison between the District’s African community, District government agencies, and the Mayor. Rahman is committed to improving the quality of life, increasing engagement, and supporting development of the District’s African community, by means of unique partnerships and new initiatives in government agencies.
As a longtime District resident, Branch began public service in the Park Morton community as a Program Coordinator for the Department of Justice’s Weed and Seed program. In 2005, Branch joined the administrative staff of Ballou Senior High School as an assistant principal. There, Branch focused on college awareness, which brought about an influx in college scholarship and financial aid funds for the students. Moreover, Branch tackled truancy issues within the school, resulting in a 17-point reduction in truancy over 16-month period. By 2008, Branch was promoted to Principlal of Ballou High School.
Branch served as Principal of Ballou High School in the Ward 8 neighborhood of Congress Heights for the next 6 years before joining the Office of Mayor Bowser. Leading the school, Branch leveraged his position and effected great change. He rebranded the high school and created the mission to “Develop and graduate globally competitive students for college, career, and leadership. Harmoniously, he coined “The New Ballou” to move away from past reputations and instill pride amongst the students. In addition, he established a nonprofit arm, with an operating budget of four million dollars to support school wrap-around services and supplemental programming for college advancement efforts including a scholarship fund. By the end of his tenure he boosted 9th grade promotion rate by nearly 25 points and graduation rate by 20 points.
At Ballou High School, Branch was dedicated to creating an environment of excellence; a mantra that he has carried over to the Mayor’s Office on African American Affairs. Branch holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from University of Virginia and a Master’s in Education Administration and an Executive Master’s in Leadership from Trinity University and Georgetown University - The McDonough School of Business, respectively.