Robert Trestan is the Executive Director of the Anti-Defamation League’s Boston office where he oversees the League’s fundraising, program initiatives and leadership development. He is an experienced civil right advocate dedicated to developing community partnerships and initiatives that provide justice, equality and fair treatment.
From Boston, Robert directs education programs to thousands of students across New England and advocates for civil rights and equal treatment. He leads the League’s regional law enforcement initiatives, including hate crime and extremism training, and counter-terrorism seminars in Israel.
He represented the League at the White House Summit on Countering Violent Extremism where he raised concerns that anti-Semitism remains at the core of extremist ideology. In Europe, Robert is part of an international team of prosecutors and hate crime trainers who provide training and support to various countries. Internationally, he has consulted on hate crimes and legislative advocacy to NGOs and civil society groups in Austria, Israel, Poland and Turkey.
Before taking the helm of the Boston office, he served as ADL’s Civil Rights Counsel for eight years where he led the League’s Cyberhate Response Team and played a key leadership role in meeting and working with Internet industry executives in Silicon Valley. He represented ADL to NGOs and governments abroad in an effort to find practical solutions to combat online hate.
In Massachusetts, he built a statewide coalition which was responsible for drafting one of the most comprehensive anti-bullying laws in the country.
Robert’s expert commentary on civil rights, extremism and anti-Semitism has appeared in major media outlets including the New York Times, Boston Globe, Boston Herald Fox News and NBC.
Prior to joining ADL, Robert served for more than a decade as Director of Civil Rights at the Boston Housing Authority and previously worked as an Assistant Public Defender in Naples, Florida. Robert holds a JD from the University Of Miami School Of Law and a BA from Trent University.