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Nikki Stokes-Thompson

Chief of Staff

Nikki's Expertise

Nikki is primarily responsible for investor relations and works closely with the firm’s executive leadership on business operations and strategic growth. She also serves as the liaison to the board of managers of Ariel Alternatives. She joined Ariel in 2020 as Chief of Staff to Mellody Hobson, Co-CEO of Ariel Investments. Prior to Ariel, Nikki worked at the National Basketball Association as marketing partnerships lead for the NBA Gatorade League, where she led the relationships with 17 corporate partners including Gatorade, MGM Resorts International and Nike. She was also responsible for acquiring new business for the league and negotiating incremental deals. During her time at the NBA, she served as the co-chair of its Black employee resource group, Dream in Color. Nikki’s previous experience includes roles at Under Armour and the office of United States Senator Cory A. Booker. She is a board member of the International Spy Museum in Washington D.C. and was recognized as a “30 Under 30” honoree by Forbes in 2024. Nikki earned a BA in government with a minor in African American Studies from Georgetown University, where she was a George F. Baker Scholar.