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Fall Update

At SPS this fall, all courses, other than pre-established online courses, will be offered face-to-face in our New York City classrooms. Some of these face-to-face courses will be offered in the HyFlex format to ensure that all of our students can make progress toward their degree requirements, if faced with delays due to student visas or vaccination effectiveness wait times.
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Cindy M. Lott

Associate Professor of Professional Practice; Academic Director, M.S. Nonprofit Management

Cindy M. Lott, Esq., is an Associate Professor of Professional Practice at Columbia University and also serves as Academic Program Director for Nonprofit Management Program at the School of Professional Studies; she teaches several courses addressing governance, ethics, management and the relationship of the nonprofit sector and government. Prior to her current position, she served as Executive Director and Senior Counsel to the National State Attorneys General Program at Columbia Law School, and within that Program was the developer and lead counsel to the Charities Regulation and Oversight Project from 2006-2015.

Lott is a Senior Fellow at the Center on Nonprofits and Philanthropy at the Urban Institute, where she develops and moderates a series of national convenings on state and federal regulation of the charitable sector and is engaged in research regarding regulatory capacity and enforcement at the state level. In addition, Lott was an inaugural Policy Fellow at Independent Sector, the largest membership organization for the nonprofit sector in the world.

Lott is a frequent speaker at national conferences in the areas of philanthropic and nonprofit state regulation, compliance, management and governance.  Lott served on the IRS Advisory Committee on Tax Exempt and Government Entities (ACT) 2015-2018 and was a member of Independent Sector’s Public Policy Committee 2014-2017.

Lott was Chief Counsel to the 2004 Democratic National Convention in Boston and Deputy Counsel to the 2000 Democratic National Convention in Los Angeles. Early in her career, she worked at large firms in several major cities in the areas of employment, business litigation and compliance. She also served as Chief Counsel for Advisory Services in the Indiana Attorney General's office, as well as Section Chief for Administrative and Regulatory Litigation in that office.

Lott is a 1993 graduate of the Yale Law School and clerked for the United States Court of Appeals, First Circuit. She is admitted to practice in the District of Columbia, Indiana and Massachusetts.



  • NOPM PS5290: Role and Unique Nature of the Nonprofit Sector
  • NOPM PS515: Nonprofit Governance
  • NOPM PS5180: Ethics in the Nonprofit Sector
  • NOPM PS5265: Managing the Mission-based Organization


  • J.D., Yale University
  • B.A., Indiana University