Meet the Speakers
President of Emerge
A’shanti F. Gholar serves as the president of Emerge, the only organization dedicated to recruiting and training Democratic women to run for office. In this role, she leads the organization and steers its overall strategy and direction, overseeing a national staff as well as affiliates across the country. For over 15 years, A’shanti has been a grassroots organizer and activist for women, communities of color and progressive causes.
EXPERT DISCUSSION 1
Former UT legislator, Leadership Coach, and Ranked Choice Voting Expert
Rebecca Chavez-Houck holds a BA in Journalism and Mass Communication and a Master of Public Administration (MPA), both from the University of Utah (U of U). She represented Salt Lake City’s District 24 in the Utah House of Representatives from 2008-18, focusing on public policy related to health and human services as well as voter engagement and access.
Councilmember for the City of St. Paul, MN
Nelsie Yang serves as the elected Councilmember for the City of Saint Paul’s 6th Ward. At 27 years old and a daughter of Hmong refugees, she is the youngest and first Hmong American woman to be elected to St Paul’s City Council.
Director of Research and Policy at FairVote
Deb Otis is the Director of Research and Policy at FairVote. With a decade of experience in research and analytics, Deb is passionate about sharing the data-driven case for why our country needs election reform.
EXPERT DISCUSSION 2
Charlotte Clymer is a writer, LGBTQ activist, communications consultant, and military veteran. She writes "Charlotte's Web Thoughts," a Substack blog/newsletter that was nominated for the 2023 GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Blog.
Director of the Democracy Policy Initiative at UC Berkeley
Charlotte is the director of the Democracy Policy Initiative at UC Berkeley’s Goldman School of Public Policy. A trained political scientist, Charlotte researches how to expand democratic access and equity through public policy. She regularly advises organizations focused on improving election and voting laws and increasing civic participation.
Advocacy Director at Coalition of Communities of Color
Sol Mora was born in Tijuana, Mexico, and grew up in Salem, Oregon. Currently, Sol is the Advocacy Director at the Coalition of Communities of Color.
TAKE ACTION PANEL
CEO and Co-Founder, Leadership Now Project
Daniella Ballou-Aares is the CEO and Co-Founder of the Leadership Now Project, a national membership organization of business and thought leaders committed to renewing American democracy.
Jackie Hope Glass
Delegate for the VA State Legislature
Certified Doer – Partnership Grower – Civic Connector
Jackie Glass is a self-proclaimed Certified Doer, Mama and Veteran from the Chicagoland area. She served in the United States Navy for eleven years as a cryptologist where she deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Executive Director of FairVote Minnesota
Bio coming soon!
Statewide Coordinator at Washington for Equitable Representation
Kenia is the statewide coordinator for Washington for Equitable Representation (WER), a project of the Washington Community Alliance. WER is a statewide, multi-racial coalition fighting to achieve equitable representation through proportional ranked-choice voting and other democracy reforms.
Legal Director of Black Voters Matter
For more than 24 years, April England-Albright has worked in the area of civil rights law, first as a partner at Chestnut, Sanders, Sanders, Pettaway, Campbell and Albright and institutions then through her own law firm, where her experiences included serving as an attorney in the “Black Farmers Lawsuit”, which to date is the largest discrimination lawsuit against the United States, and litigating cases, which addressed race discrimination in the workplace, voting disenfranchisement caused by gerrymandering and other voter suppression tactics, and criminal defense.