NLC Nominates Seven to American Council of Young Political Leaders Exchange
NLC Community Members nominated to ACYPL Exchange Program
Recognizing that the New Leaders Council community is the premier source of emerging local, national, and global leaders, the American Council of Young Political Leaders (ACYPL) just accepted seven nominations from the New Leaders council for consideration for future exchange programs.
ACYPL, a non-partisan 501(c)(3), organizes highly-selective international exchanges for young political leaders worldwide through small (7–10 members) delegations of rising stars aged 25–40. These delegations bring together leaders with diverse political affiliations, backgrounds, and life experiences to promote global understanding, respect, and friendship. If selected for an ACYPL exchange, NLC’s members delegation will have the opportunity to travel across the globe to meet fellow leaders in foreign countries, and build ties of mutual respect, understanding, and vision.
The seven nominated are the first of many NLC members that will be nominated to participate in ACYPL’s programs. During these exchange programs, delegates visit several international cities highlighting the political, economic, cultural, and geographic diversity of the host country or territory. Delegates on an ACYPL exchange meet and interact with government officials; policy makers; political and campaign experts; corporate, labor, and community leaders; students; and every day citizens.
NLC is proud of its nominees and looks forward to hearing, and sharing, more about their impressive achievements.
Erin Belitskus | Clare Bresnahan | Janessa Goldbeck | Paula Hodges | Yetunde A. Odugbesan-Omede | Shane Seaver | Leanne Stogsdill
Erin Belitskus is the co-director of the New Leaders Council Boston Chapter and is an experienced public policy developer and citizen of the world. Originally from southwestern Pennsylvania, Erin is active in civic life in her current hometown of Cambridge, Massachusetts where she serves on the Democratic Ward Committee and can be found during her free time volunteering for local youth development organizations or writing about women’s rights and intersectional issues at Fem2pt0. Erin is interested in creating a sustainable energy future and harnessing the power of women and girls to build resilient communities. A returned Peace Corps volunteer, she holds an MScEcon in terrorism and international relations from Aberystwyth University and a BA from Green Mountain College.
Clare Bresnahan dedicates her professional and personal time towards creating sustainable opportunities where underrepresented voices have seats at centers of power. She specializes in developing advocacy and coalition building strategies that produce measurable results for non-profit and private partnerships. As Programs Director for Women’s Campaign Fund (WCF) and its foundation, She Should Run, Clare focuses on breaking down the barriers women face when running for office. She oversees the strategy, operations, and outreach for WCF and She Should Run programs, including national and local partnerships. Prior to WCF, she served as the Public Policy and Advocacy Associate for their government relations office of the Girl Scouts of the USA.
Clare led GSUSA’s legislative and public affairs strategies for promoting healthy media images and oversaw grassroots and national partnerships elevating Girl Scouts’ advocacy efforts. Clare starts the Johns Hopkins University’s Masters in Public Management program this fall and graduated from American University with B.A. in Communications, Law, Economics, and Government (C.L.E.G.). She is a graduate of American University Women and Politics Institute’s WeLEAD bipartisan leadership training program. In 2010, Clare co-founded the Young Professionals Advisory Council for the Capitol Breast Care Center. During her spare time, she volunteers as an English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher with adult immigrants and advices young women running for office. She is a proud Midwest native, who hails from the Queen City of the Midwest- Cincinnati, Ohio.
2nd Lt. Janessa Goldbeck is a Combat Engineer Officer with the United States Marine Corps. Prior to joining the Marine Corps, Lt. Goldbeck's work focused on the intersection between national security, human rights, international development and technology. She has consulted on a range of projects for government, nonprofit and corporate clients, including the Department of Defense, the Office of Opinion Research at the Department of State, Campaign Consultation, Inc., Reboot and the Foreign Service Institute.
Previously, Lt. Goldbeck served as the national spokesperson for the Truman National Security Project, highlighting the critical role international development plays in America’s national security. Previously, she directed cutting edge advocacy and media campaigns around mass atrocity prevention for the Save Darfur Coalition, Genocide Intervention Network and STAND, global human rights advocacy organizations. Lt. Goldbeck is a Senior Fellow with the Alliance for Youth Movements, a Partner with the Truman National Security Project, a Fellow with New Leaders Council and a graduate of Northwestern University. In 2012, she was awarded the George C. Marshall Advocacy Award and the Office of the Atlanta Mayor's Phoenix Award for Civic Leadership.
Paula Hodges relocated to Rhode Island in 2011 to serve as the state’s Public Policy & Advocacy Director for Planned Parenthood of Southern New England. Hodges last worked as Political Director for Missouri National Education Association (MNEA), the state’s largest public employee union and prior to that coordinated progressive labor, environmental and women’s groups’ electoral plans at the America Votes – Missouri table.
Paula previously served as deputy director of policy for Missouri Secretary of State Robin Carnahan. She graduated from Truman State University with an interdisciplinary degree in Cultural & Political Advocacy and became interested in politics while serving as a Congressional Page for former Congressman Ike Skelton (MO-4). Having recently moved from the Midwest, Paula is astutely aware of the polarizing political environment we must cut through in order to seek progress around reproductive justice and social justice issues. She enjoys time spent with her rescued Labrador mix, Hazel, dabbling in the culinary arts, cycling on one of RI’s many rails to trails and traveling throughout the country, especially around New England.
Yetunde A. Odugbesan-Omede
Born and raised in New Jersey, Yetunde A. Odugbesan-Omede, is the CEO and Founder of Yetunde Global Consulting LLC., a management consulting firm which specializes in leadership development and training, organizational management and global business strategies. She is also the Founder and Executive Director of Young Woman’s Guide, an organization that provides mentorship opportunities, women empowerment events, resources and opportunities to give back and get involved with various philanthropic and humanitarian initiatives geared toward women and girls development.
Yetunde is currently a Ph.D (ABD) candidate at Division of Global Affairs Rutgers University in New Jersey, where she is will obtain her doctoral degree in Global Affairs. She is currently a Fellow at United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Executive Board and External Relations Branch. She is also an Adjunct Faculty Member of Political Science at Rutgers University where she teaches Comparative Politics. She is a graduate of the United Nations Worldview Institute, an executive training program for business executives and professionals in the field of Global Business and International Affairs. She was an Eagleton Institute of Politics Fellow and New Leaders Council Fellow. She received her master's degree in Global Affairs with a concentration in International Law from Rutgers University.
Yetunde's various passions and mission to pay it forward is often recognized in the various philanthropic and humanitarian initiatives she lends herself to. She was the Vice President and Board of Directors of Friends of Teboho, Inc., (FoT) an organization who works to support programs and activities worldwide, with a particular focus in South Africa, aimed at assisting vulnerable, at-risk, and orphaned children and adolescents. Currently she is the Chair of Youth Affairs for Nigerians in the Diaspora Organization (NIDO) 2013 World Conference that will take place in US. She served as a distinguished Eagleton Institute of Politics Fellow at the New Jersey State Ethics Commission. She is a member of the Young Professionals in Foreign Policy, United Nations Association of New York, Young Professionals for International Cooperation, Global Women Leadership Collaborative and a mentor coach for various organizations.
Yetunde is involved in the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) Annual & University Meetings. She is listed as one of the Top 13 Young African Business/Economic Leaders to Watch in 2013 by Ventures Africa Magazine. She was chosen as one out of 30 Most Intriguing Africans in New York by Applause Africa Magazine. She was also chosen by Eminent Leaders Magazine as #1 on a top 20 list of the Most Outstanding Nigerian and was also selected as Eminent Leader's-Emerging Personality of the Year. She is an international motivational speaker, entrepreneur, TV/Radio personality, educator, author, writer, humanitarian and philanthropist.
Yetunde's passion to foster a spirit of service and civic engagement and to encourage more people to public service led to the co-authorship of a published book titled, "A Call to Serve: Quotes on Public Service." Yetunde believes that it is her responsibility to encourage, inspire and motivate others to be the best that they can be. Her mission is to pay it forward.
Currently, Shane serves as the Deputy Chief of Staff/Communications Director for Rep. Matt Cartwright (PA-17), as well as his Political Director. Before moving to the official side, he served as the Campaign Manager for Democratic candidate Matt Cartwright's race in Pennsylvania's 17th Congressional District. In the Primary election Cartwright scored a 14-point victory over 10-term incumbent Congressman Tim Holden. And won the General election by 20.5 points. Prior to Cartwright, he served as the Deputy Campaign Manager for New Jersey's 4th Legislative District. The 4th District consists of Senator Fred Madden, Assemblyman Paul Moriarty and Assemblywoman Gabriela Mosquera. Mosquera's victory was the sole Democratic pick-up state wide.
Shane also served as Campaign Manger for Isaiah Thomas' challenger race to capture an at-large seat on the Philadelphia City Council. In doing so, he managed a city-wide campaign with an electorate of over 1 million. Further, he created an intensive targeted field operation, resulting in top five results in each targeted Ward. Prior to Thomas' bid, Shane managed Bill Holmes campaign to capture the State Representative seat in PA-167.
Shane worked with the PA House Democratic Campaign Committee to create targeted field, GOTV and vote by mail plans; as well as an operating campaign budget. He put in place a robust field operation, reaching nearly 20,000 voters; as well as created and successfully implemented a full and regimented finance solicitation program using union outreach and current donor research. He currently serves as the Selection Chair for NLC Philadelphia and was a fellow of the inaugural 2011 class. Shane was born in Tampa, Florida in 1985 and received his B.A. in Political Science from James Madison University, Pa.
Leanne Stogsdill is an experienced attorney with exceptional talent for written and oral advocacy. She is known for her expertise in dependency law and criminal law with an emphasis on indigent defense, collaborative courts, substance abuse, mental illness, and gang crime.
Leanne has worked at the Public Defender’s Office in Orange County, California for over five years as the lead defense attorney in criminal and dependency matters with full oversight of investigation, trial strategy, motions practice, legal research, and courtroom appearances. In her current position, Leanne serves as lead defense counsel on a felony caseload where she defends clients charged with drug sales, gang crime, and crimes of violence, including attempted murder. Leanne has defended in excess of 25 jury trials, 50 probable cause hearings, and 22 dependency hearings; and has secured numerous acquittals and reduced charges on behalf of her clients. She has assisted clients in securing rehabilitation programs in lieu of prison, advocated for services and resources for drug-addicted parents in collaborative dependency drug courts, won litigation granting family reunification services to a developmentally delayed parent, and most recently obtained a reversal of a felony gang conviction.
Leanne’s career has been marked by a deep commitment to social justice. As a law student, Leanne wrote, argued, and won a criminal appeal before the Maryland Court of Appeals, securing a new trial for a man sentenced to 25 years in prison. Before earning her law degree, she worked as a program assistant at a non-profit that promoted educational and career success for high school and college students with disabilities. Leanne holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Washington in Seattle and a juris doctor from the George Washington University Law School in Washington, DC. She was the first in her family to graduate from college.
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