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Kayla Blado , Media Coordinator & Affiliate Relations Director , Workers Independent News
Kayla was born in Waukesha, WI, a conservative stronghold in southeastern Wisconsin, but became progressive in high school. She attended her freshman year of college at the Evergreen State College in Olympia, WA before transferring to the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She majored in Sociology and Latin American, Caribbean, and Iberian Studies. Her travels in college include Peru, Costa Rica, and the Scandinavian countries. She has experience producing progressive talk radio and using social media for organizing. She has presented workshops on these techniques at RootsCamp 2012 and the 2013 Democracy Convention. Her interests include labor relations, women’s issues, wealth inequality, and media studies.
David Crowley , District Director , Wisconsin State Senate, Senator Nikiya Q. Harris, Senate District 6
I am an organizer at heart and a political junkie by trade. I was born and raised in inner-city Milwaukee, Wisconsin. It’s not the greatest city, but it’s my city and I love it. I attended Milwaukee Public Schools and I studied at the University of Wisconsin- Milwaukee in Community Studies and Educational Policies.
I have worked as an organizer in both, the community and political fields. IÍve worked on issues such as voter rights, education, marriage equality, and political campaigns from the local to state level. Working within the political world is what I love and what I do best.
My idea of progressive consists of equality through creative action and policy making. I believe that progressivism has no political boundaries. It is a way of thinking, it is a way of action. With political aspiration of his own – David is passionate about making positive improvements to communities as a whole.
I currently serve as the District Director for a Wisconsin State Senator. My responsibilities include constituent outreach, policy research and development, committee assignments, etc.
I am excited to be a part of the 1st cohort of NLC- Madison. I’m looking forward to learning new information while gaining new friends and contacts in the process.
Lisa Geason-Bauer , President , Evolution Marketing
Lisa Geason-Bauer is President of Evolution Marketing (www.evmkting.com) an Oconomowoc, WI based green marketing, design and environmental communication firm. As the Evolution Marketing spokesperson, Lisa has been invited to be a guest speaker at several Wisconsin Universities and at various associations and trade groups over the years. She has presented talks on: green marketing, environmental communication, grass roots marketing and how to establish accepted “”green credentials.”" Since 2011 Ms. Geason-Bauer has served as a member of the Advisory Board of Directors for the Wisconsin Sustainable Business Council.
In addition to managing Evolution Marketing, Ms. Geason-Bauer has actively volunteered her time with a variety of community organizations. Ms. Geason-Bauer served in the capacity of President of Greener Oconomowoc from 2009-2011. While President of Greener Oconomowoc she founded the Oconomowoc Winter Farmers’ Market as a joint venture between the Oconomowoc Chamber of Commerce and Greener Oconomowoc. Fall of 2013 markets the fourth season of Waukesha County’s first indoor winter farmersÕ market, which has over 30 local farmers and artisan producers.
Ms. Geason-Bauer was also the volunteer public relations chair for the Oconomowoc Community Built Playground & Imagination Station Project in 2008 and 2009. In 2012 Ms. Geason-Bauer was appointed to the Waukesha – Ozaukee- Washington (WOW) County Workforce Development Board of Directors.
Rebecca, Gittelson, Research Specialist and Communications Team Lead, University of Wisconsin Health Innovation Program
Rebecca is a public health and communications professional. She strives to improve health across the nation by translating health research into language that is understandable for real-world audiences, from policy-makers to patients. Rebecca currently leads communications and research on diabetes policy for the Health Innovation Program, a health services research program at the University of Wisconsin. In addition, Rebecca volunteers with The Road Home, a family homeless shelter, and the Ronald McDonald House in Madison.
An Atlanta native, she spent most of her life in the South before moving to Madison in 2012. She attended Atlanta Public Schools and received her BA at Emory University in International Studies and Global Health. In Atlanta, she worked in communications for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Division of Reproductive Health and interned with the Democratic Party of Georgia. She also loves to travel, and has worked on health and human rights issues in Israel, South Africa, and England.
Mark, Greene, Financial Advisor, Merril Lynch
Mark is originally from Seattle. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Aeronautical Engineering at the United States Air Force Academy. After graduation, he served as an instructor pilot in the Air Force—flying over 170 combat missions in support of military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. After his active military service, Mark earned a law degree from the University of Wisconsin Law School. As a law student, Mark focused on corporate law and business structures, contracts, trust and estate law, and individual/corporate taxation. He also served both as Vice President of the Sports and Entertainment Law Society, and as a student attorney for the Wisconsin Innocence Project where he reopened “cold cases” to exonerate falsely convicted prisoners.
Roo, Harrigan, Project Manager, Epic Systems, Inc.
Roo Harrigan was raised in Little Silver, NJ and grew up in a progressive household. She attended the College of William & Mary, where she majored in Biological Anthropology and completed the pre-med requirements. While in school, Roo interned at Planned Parenthood and was heavily involved in a peer health outreach group with a focus on women’s health. Immediately after graduation, she moved to Madison to take an implementation role at Epic Systems, Inc. Over the past 3 years, Roo has worked with Johns Hopkins Medicine and Connecticut Children’s Hospital to build, test, train, and implement the installation of electronic medical records and the suite of Epic software that supports them. Roo is also on the company committee for supporting customers that plan to attest for Meaningful Use of an EHR through the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, and leads the group that determines the future of development for behavioral healthcare needs. Since moving to Madison, Roo has since changed her career path focus from medical school to information technology services. She is interested in exploring how to leverage new technologies in both the public and private sectors to further the progressive cause.
Tyler Hendricks was raised in Sparta, WI and graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Political Science in 2009. He has had the good fortune to campaign on behalf of progressive candidates across the state, including Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson, State Senator Jennifer Shilling, and US Senator Tammy Baldwin. Most recently, he campaigned for Yes on 66, which proposed to increase funding for Colorado Public Schools. When not out working to promote progressive candidates and causes, he can be found on the family hobby farm, taking care of the sheep and an ill-tempered donkey.
Katie Iliff, Intern, State Senate Democratic Committee
Katie got heavily involved in politics during the 2012 Governor’s recall campaign. She worked to recruit volunteers, make phone calls and knock doors. During GOTV, she trained phonebank volunteers.
She then got involved in Obama for America.
She was an organizer in Madison, WI where she helped bring people from all parts of the community together to create a strong group that worked together in their community to re-elect President Obama and other progressive leaders. She then worked as a Campus Organizer of the University of Wisconsin- Madison campus where she recruited and trained volunteers. She had the honor of introducing President Obama when he came to Madison in October 2012.
She then interned in the office of State Representative Melissa Sargent where she focused on constituent relations. She continues to work on Representative Sargent’s reelection campaign by maintaining the donor call book and planning events.
She also interns for the State Senate Democratic Committee. There, she conducts donor research and works to get State Senate campaigns running.
Katie has lived in the Madison area for over ten years and eventually got her Bachelors Degree from the University of Wisconsin- Madison. While in school, she was involved with Young Progressives, a student organization on campus, eventually serving on the Executive Board.
Karalyn (Kara), Kratowicz, Lead KidStat Analyst, State of Wisconsin Department of Children and Families
I am a trained social worker who specializes in social policies that impact children, youth and families. I am passionate about pursuing social justice, reducing inequalities and finding creative means to ensure funding for social programs. Born and raised in Kenosha, Wisconsin, I moved to Madison to attend UW-Madison where I earned my bachelor’s and master’s degrees. My work experiences range from research, non-profits, county human service to state service including public health, workforce development and economic support programs. I currently work for the state of Wisconsin as the lead analyst in a performance management program, KidStat, at the Department of Children and Families. I continue my passion to pursue social justice as a volunteer within the community.
I worked on several political campaigns to ensure representation for progressive social and economic support programs. I currently serve as the secretary on the board of the Wisconsin Women in Government. I am also a member of the City of Madison Early Childhood Care and Education committee. I believe in continuous improvement in personal and professional spheres and look forward to learning from the New Leaders Council as a 2014 fellow.
Ian Lehrer , Energy and Environmental Engineer , Nestle Purina
Ian Lehrer grew up in Franklin, WI and obtained his undergraduate degree from the University of Wisconsin _ Platteville in Mechanical Engineering. While on campus, he was inducted into the National Residence Hall Honorary and served on the Recognition and Recruitment Committees for 2 years. Ian has worked for many different employers including UWP _ OIT, Pieper Power, DL Solutions, Hormel Foods, and Nestl_ Purina. Ian has become proficient in energy management, maintenance reliability, TPM, and environmental regulations especially wastewater discharges. In his current role, Ian manages the environmental program and the energy management program for the Jefferson, WI factory and he advises for other factoriesÍ energy programs. He also works to bridge the gap between corporate divisions; both nationally and regionally.
Alicia, Lux, Police Reports Typist, City of Madison Police Department
A fourth-generation graduate of the University of Wisconsin at Madison, Alicia Lux has spent the majority of her working life in public service. Currently employed as clerical support staff for the City of Madison, WI, Police Department Chief’s Office, Lux also devotees her time to organizing for and defending workers’ rights in her role as a steward for her union (AFSCME Local 60), and serves as Chair of the union’s political committee, PEOPLE (Public Employees Organized to Promote Legislative Equality), for AFSCME Council 40 in Wisconsin’s 2nd Congressional District. In her position with Madison Police Department, Lux has daily interaction with both civilian and commissioned staff, from patrol ranks to leadership positions, as well as with citizens and elected officials, non-profit representatives, and community leaders; she has worked on projects as varied as the Department’s introduction to social media through Facebook and blogging, and coordinating staffing for President Obama’s final campaign stop in Madison on the eve of his reelection. In her free time, Lux is a devotee of the arts, and you can often find her supporting local artists at concerts, shows, and exhibitions.
Jeremy, Lyon, Partner, Lyon Group LLP
Jeremy is a partner at Lyon Group, LLP, a law firm providing full-spectrum campaign and policy services to progressive candidates and elected officials. He graduated magna cum laude from the University of Wisconsin Law School in 2013 and practices in Madison. Prior to law, Jeremy worked on numerous Arkansas Democratic Party campaigns and served four years in the US Army as an infantry officer. He served one year in Iraq, is the recipient of the Bronze Star medal, and continues to serve in the Wisconsin Army National Guard.
Bryan, Mette, Executive Policy and Budget Analyst, Wisconsin Department of Administration
Bryan Mette is from the western suburbs of Chicago and came to Wisconsin in 2009 to pursue academic opportunities at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He graduated from the university in 2012 with a B.A in both Political Science and Economics and received a Master of Public Affairs from the La Follette School of Public Affairs in 2013. At La Follette, he focused on coursework related to public budgeting and finance which serves him well in his current position as an Executive Policy and Budget Analyst in the Wisconsin State Budget Office. In his role as an analyst, Bryan is focused on the formation and implementation of the biennial budget for the Wisconsin Department of Transportation. Among other duties, he analyzes proposed fiscal policies, coordinates with agency staff, and monitors spending and revenue trends for the department. As an analyst, he also researches and analyzes pending legislation affecting transportation policy or local governments.
Bryan believes good government and sound fiscal management depends upon policymakers who are willing to formulate innovative solutions that can garner broad support while also being conscious stewards of limited government resources. He is energized to bring this belief to NLC and looks forward to immersing himself deeper into the Madison community. Being a native of Chicagoland, Bryan is well versed in the agonies of sports fans and despite the heartbreak they have caused him, he still roots for his beloved Badgers, Bears, Bulls, Blackhawks and Cubs. In his free time, Bryan enjoys reading books about the U.S. presidency, exercising, and traveling to Alaska.
Elizabeth Miller is a lifelong Midwesterner and a graduate of Grinnell College, where she studied anthropology and English literature. She moved to Madison in 2012 after interning as a chapter organizer with 9to5 Georgia and working for the Office of the State Archaeologist of Iowa. Elizabeth is now a volunteer activist leader for 9to5 Wisconsin, an organization that has won important state and national victories for women and working families since 1973, including the Wisconsin Family and Medical Leave Act. 9to5 is one of the largest national membership organizations of working women in the U.S., dedicated to putting working women’s issues on the public agenda. Elizabeth’s previous experience includes technical writing, mass communications, archival research, and social media management. She is passionate about protecting and advancing women’s rights in the workplace, securing living wages for all workers, and ending domestic violence.
Kelsey, Morin, Attorney, Knoll & Laitch S.C.
I have spent the better part of my adult life in Madison, now starting my career as an attorney after graduating last May. I practice for a small firm in Madison doing criminal defense and a little bit of family law. I enjoy a lively game of soccer, a good beer, or a spirited board game with friends. I am the proud ‘mama’ of an 80-pound chocolate lab, who provides me with many laughs and lots of cuddles.
Sophia, Rogers, Hospital Billing Implementer, Epic
I earned my B.A. in Political Science, Economics, and Mathematics at Columbia’s Barnard College with a senior thesis on collective action. I did the White House Internship last fall in the Domestic Policy Council’s Office of Energy and Climate Change. I returned to Madison, my hometown, to work at Epic about a year ago. I’m joining the New Leaders Council because I want to succeed as a progressive. My passion for solving problems drives consistent growth from work and schooling. In my first year at Epic, I implemented hospital billing software to help a struggling Brooklyn hospital keep its doors open for an indigent patient population.
Seeing that my role’s major training component was broken, I’ve created an editing process to engage experts quickly. I had the honor to work in White House for the President’s energy adviser Heather Zichel. I briefed and supported the team by analyzing energy productivity and industry data. At Barnard, I double majored in Economics and Mathematics (a joint major) and Political Science. For my senior thesis, Collective Action Talk and Walk: Labor Organizing and Political Participation, I investigated the relationship between people’s attitudes about collective action and their behavior. Running regressions on survey data and data from an original political economy experiment, I found that people’s attitudes towards collective action relates to their likelihood to act, and that a desire for dignity motivates people to engage in collective action.
While in school, I edited the Columbia Roosevelt Review and RA’ed in the first-year dorms for two years. I also had my most formative work experience field managing at the Working Families Party in Brooklyn. In that job, I organized city and suburban neighborhoods for fundraising campaigns and elections. I also led the organization to diversify its urban canvass by succeeding against expectations. I aim to apply my organizing and analytical training to a long career in public service. I want to take part in the powerful collaboration and smart policy that is improving cities all over the country. In joining the NLC, I join a movement that is helping people live and work with more equality, opportunity, and mutual respect. The Council will include me in a national network of young progressives and expose me to a more intimate level of policy in Madison. I play violin, take pictures, and study math, words, and economics.
Jessy, Servi, Sustainability Manager, Outpost Natural Foods Cooperative
Jessy Servi is the Sustainability Manager for Outpost Natural Foods, the second largest food cooperative in the U.S. Leveraging a diverse background in design, education, business, project management, and permaculture, Jessy brings ecological and social awareness to the business arena, promoting a triple bottom line strategy.
At Outpost Jessy is responsible for tracking and monitoring sustainability in the following key areas: organics, distribution & sourcing, energy, climate change, water, waste, packaging, labor, animal care, consumer education, and governance & community engagement. She manages green teams at each store location and is actively engaged in designing creative and high-performing cultures to be thoughtful stewards, making sound business decisions with respect for future generations and all living things. Jessy sits on the member review committee for the Sustainable Food Trade Association, reviewing food trade member’s sustainability reports and offering critical feedback. She also is an advisor for the Wisconsin Sustainable Business Council.
Jessy lives in Milwaukee where she is actively involved in sustainable urban agriculture. She co-developed and co-leads the Food Leader Certificate Program for Victory Garden Initiative, a program that educates about food systems issues, local food production and builds leadership and community organizing capacity for the local food movement. She also sits on VGI’s finance committee and is the secretary of the board of directors. Jessy recently earned her MBA from Alverno College with an emphasis on sustainable business management. She is passionate about building healthy relationships, fostering community and developing thoughtful culture. She believes that through business we have the opportunity to transform local, regional and global challenges with effective leadership; leading with integrity, care and concern for people, planet AND profit.
J. Adam Woodford , Partner , Herrick & Kasdorf L.L.P.
J. Adam Woodford is a Partner at Herrick & Kasdorf L.L.P. He focuses his law practice on assisting entrepreneurs and growing businesses with transactional matters. He has experience representing privately held and family-owned businesses, including those involved in professional services, real estate, retail, manufacturing, food service and hospitality. His work includes the purchase and sale of businesses and business assets; mergers, conversions, and acquisitions; negotiating changes in ownership and resolving owner disputes; financing and raising capital; negotiating, analyzing and drafting contracts, leases and licenses; forming corporations, LLCs and nonprofits; protecting confidential and proprietary information, processes and designs; creating and enforcing non-competition agreements; hiring and terminating employees; and dispute resolution.
Beyond his work with Herrick & Kasdorf, Mr. Woodford spends a significant amount of time participating in pro bono activities and volunteering in the greater Madison community. He volunteers at the Family Law Assistance Center and Small Claims Assistance Program where he assists unrepresented families and individuals navigate the court system. Likewise, as Secretary of the Madison Waldorf School’s board of trustees, he devotes substantial time and effort to helping the school grow and thrive. He is also an active board member of the Dane County Bar Association and chairman of the New Lawyers Section.
A native of Madison, Wisconsin, Mr. Woodford spent much of the last decade living in the Pacific Northwest where he graduated from the University of Oregon with honors in education. He earned his Juris Doctor from Seattle University School of Law where he was a student representative and budget committee chairman of the student bar association. Following law school, Mr. Woodford returned to Wisconsin and founded Yahara Consulting Group LLC, a business consulting group that provides strategic guidance to small business owners, and Woodford Law Office LLC, a law firm that specializes in business and nonprofit law, estate planning, and real estate.
Mr. Woodford is passionate about helping local entrepreneurs build profitable, sustainable, and meaningful businesses and fostering the next generation of bold, innovative, and inspirational community leaders.