Cardwell Hughes, Renee

Renee Cardwell Hughes

Senior Advisor

Background & Experience

Judge Renee Cardwell Hughes (Ret.) is a highly experienced senior executive, attorney, retired judge, Independent Board member, and Qualified Financial Expert. She has a demonstrated history of leading large organizations with complex management structures and marketplace challenges. Judge Cardwell Hughes is particularly skilled in Strategic Leadership, Nonprofit Organizations, Coaching, Government Relations, Fund Development, Conflict Resolution, effective P&L Management, Board Development, Public Relations, and Crisis Management. She has deep experience with Media Relations across all formats. She is a strong business development professional, with a J.D. from Georgetown University Law School.

Judge Hughes completed an engagement as President and CEO of Opportunities Industrialization Center, Inc. (Philadelphia OIC), a workforce development non-profit that impacts the lives of more than 1,500 individuals annually in 2021. Previously, Judge Hughes was the CEO of The Hughes Group, whose mission was to help management teams refine, internalize and execute their corporate mission. Her clients included Independence Blue Cross, and Aqua America. Her other leadership roles include CEO of the fourth largest market in the $3 billion American Red Cross system.

Judge Hughes’s legal background includes more than fifteen years as a Trial Judge handling both civil and criminal cases. She received her legal degree from Georgetown University Law Center, after completing her undergraduate studies at the University of Virginia.

She has received numerous awards for her leadership, courage, and community involvement. In 2022 Judge received an honorary Doctor of Science degree from Thomas Jefferson University. She was inducted into the International Women in Homeland Security and Emergency Management 2013 Hall of Fame. She was recognized by the Philadelphia Business Journal as a Minority Business Leader. In 2014 Philadelphia Style Magazine named her one of the City’s Power Women, and in 2016 Renée was recognized by the Philadelphia Business Journal as a Woman of Distinction. Renée was selected as the Pearl S. Buck International 2018 Woman of Influence. In 2020 Renée was selected as an African American Leader of Influence by the Philadelphia Tribune and in 2021, Philadelphia Business Journal recognized her as one of the Philadelphia POWER 100.

Areas of Expertise

  • Public Policy
  • Public Relations
  • Strategic Planning
  • Program Management
  • Non-profit Management