Nicole Cushman is a widely-respected leader in sex education and nonprofit management. She has worked for more than two decades as an educator, trainer and advocate for adolescent health across the United States. At Mailman, she teaches the elective course Pedagogy of Sexuality Education. In her consulting practice, Nicole assists nonprofit and public health organizations with strategy, planning, and program design. Nicole is a sought after public speaker, and her frequent media appearances include The New York Times, The Washington Post, CNN, NPR, NowThis News and Teen Vogue, among other publications. She was the 2018 recipient of the Outstanding Young Professional Award from the American Public Health Association's (APHA) Sexual and Reproductive Health Section and the 2022 recipient of the Judson Wolfe Excellence in Teaching Award from the Mailman School of Public Health. Previously, Nicole served as the executive director of Answer, a national organization dedicated to promoting access to sex education across the U.S.; Director of Education for Planned Parenthood Federation of America; and co-chair of the Sexuality Task Force at APHA. Nicole was also a founding board member of the non-profit startup MyHealthEd, Inc. She began her career with Planned Parenthood in the San Francisco Bay Area, working directly with teens and parents in school and community settings.
MPH, 2011, Columbia Mailman School of Public Health
BS, 2004, Stanford University
Honors & Awards
Judson Wolfe Excellence in Teaching Award, Mailman School of Public Health, 2022
Outstanding Young Professional Award, Sexual and Reproductive Health Section, APHA, 2018
Areas of Expertise
Adolescent Health, Lesbian / Gay / Bisexual / Transgender Health, Sexuality, Abortion, Contraception, Family Planning, Reproductive Health, Reproductive Rights, Sex Education and Safe Sex, Teen Pregnancy
Back to Top
Nicole Cushman. "Community-based Sexuality Education." Evidence-based Approaches to Sexuality Education. Ed: James J. Ponzetti, Jr. Routledge. New York NY USA. 169-184, 2015.
Nicole Cushman, Leslie M. Kantor, Elizabeth Schroeder, Lesley Eicher & Gina Gambone. "Sexuality education: findings and recommendations from an analysis of 10 United States programmes." Sex Education: 14:5. 481-496, 2014.