NLC Wisconsin is comprised of, and led by, a group of talented progressive activists in Madison and Milwaukee. As an organization, we pride ourselves on running training programs for young progressives, such as our annual Institute, and being involved daily in our communities practicing the skills we teach!
Hillary VedvigFoley & Lardner LLP, AssociateMore
Hillary Vedvig is an associate and business lawyer with Foley & Lardner LLP. She is a member of the Environmental Regulation Practice. Ms. Vedvig is a graduate of Yale Law School (J.D., 2017). While there, she served as the director of the Palliative Care Medical Legal Partnership and co-authored “Forced Into Breaking the Law - the Criminalization of Homelessness in Connecticut” through the Allard K. Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic at Yale Law School. Ms. Vedvig also worked for the Ombudsperson Institute of Kosovo, Pristina, Kosovo, as a legal advisor and for the European Human Rights Advocacy Center, London, UK, as a legal intern.
Ms. Vedvig also traveled to Liberia to work with the government on negotiations with large palm oil corporations, focusing on human rights and land rights for indigenous people. Finally, while at Yale Law School, Ms. Vedvig served as a Teaching Assistant and Co-Teacher for a Divinity School course titled Life Worth Living and served as a Teaching Assistant in the Film Department, teaching classes on Disney and Hollywood in the 21st Century.
Currently, in Madison, Ms. Vedvig volunteers for the Eviction Defense Project through Legal Action of Wisconsin, providing legal representation to indigent clients facing eviction.Less
Amanda TomtenState of Wisconsin - Senate, Legislative AssistantMore
Born and raised in La Crosse, Wisconsin, Amanda is the eldest of seven children. Amanda had always followed elections, but when her family experienced several challenging situations, Amanda realized there was more to the government than electing leaders. Starting in high school, Amanda became the point person for assisting her family with navigating local, state, and federal agencies. She continues to serve in this capacity to this day.
During her first year of college, Amanda volunteered with a program called Project Grow. This program offered her the opportunity to work with low-income preschool children, their families, and the community to achieve school readiness goals. While volunteering for Project Grow, Amanda witnessed first-hand how lack of school funding and economic and racial disparity impacted young children. Following this experience, it became more clear than ever to Amanda that she wanted to be involved with decisions impacting not just preschool students, but all residents of the state of Wisconsin.
Amanda started her career in government and politics in 2014 as a legislative intern for State Senator Jennifer Shilling (D - La Crosse). After graduating from the University of Wisconsin - Madison with a degree in Human Development and Family Studies in 2015, she was hired as a Legislative Assistant to State Senator Jon Erpenbach (D - Middleton) where she remained until early 2018. Amanda volunteered as many hours as she could during the 2016 and 2018 election cycles, campaigning for several progressive candidates who have or would have served the State of Wisconsin well. In 2018, Amanda was hired as a legislative assistant for State Senator Patty Schachtner (D - Somerset) and currently serves as the Outreach Director and scheduler in her office.Less
Brett HalversonGreater Madison Chamber of Commerce, Public Policy ManagerMore
Brett Halverson graduated from the UW-Madison in 2007 and thereafter started his career working for elected officials first in state government in Madison and then for a member of Congress in Washington, DC. After a few years in DC, he returned to Madison in 2012 and received a Masters in Public Policy from the La Follette School of Public Affairs in 2014. After La Follette, and a short stint at Epic Systems in Verona, Brett became the Manager of Public Policy and Government Affairs for the Greater Madison Chamber of Commerce, where he has worked on various issues in local, state and federal government since.
Brett grew up in Rochester, MN and now resides in Mount Horeb, WI (southwest of Madison) with his wife Anna (whom he met in DC), three-year-old daughter Lucy and two dogs Mackers and Hodgie. Since moving to Mount Horeb a couple years ago, he and his wife helped launch Dane County's first and only chapter of the Wisconsin Alumni Association!
When not working or hanging out with his family, his hobbies include watching movies, watching and playing basketball, enjoying music and exercising. Policy areas he’s especially interested in include taxes, elections reform, healthcare, transportation and technology. He’s very excited to participate in NLC 2019 and looks forward to learning from the rest of his co-fellows!Less
Charis ZimmickUW Law StudentMore
Charis Zimmick is currently a third-year law student at the University of Wisconsin Law School. She is an Articles Editor for the Wisconsin Law Review, a member of the Moot Court board, and Vice President of Community Affairs for the Latino/a Law Student Association. Charis works as a research assistant for UW law professor Miriam Seifter, assisting with projects involving state administrative law. She also works as a law clerk for the UW System Office of Student and Academic Affairs.
Charis holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. After graduating, she worked as a legal assistant for an immigration attorney at the Catholic Multicultural Center. Charis is passionate about immigrant rights and is an active member of Voces de la Frontera. Recently, she traveled to a federal detention center in Dilley, Texas to provide legal services to women and children seeking asylum. Charis plans on using her law degree to advocate for the most vulnerable members of society and influence political systems in order to build a more just and equitable society.Less
Emma CampionOffice of State Representative Gordon Hintz, Operations DirectorMore
Emma Campion graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 2016 with dual degrees in Spanish and Political Science. Upon graduation, she began working in the Wisconsin State Capitol as a Legislative Aide. She has previously worked for now Mayor of Racine Cory Mason, State Representative JoCasta Zamarripa, and current Wisconsin Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes. Currently, she serves as the Operations Director for Wisconsin Assembly Democratic Leader Gordon Hintz.
Working for different elected officials Emma has policy knowledge ranging from immigration and criminal justice reform to consumer protection and environmental protection initiatives. She maintains that if everyone had the opportunity to work in government, voter turnout would never be an issue.
Emma is currently in the process of applying to law school; she hopes to begin fulfilling this lifelong goal in the fall of 2019. Emma plans to practice criminal law and work within the juvenile corrections system.
Outside of work, Emma is a boxing enthusiast who likes to spend time reading, spending time with family, and predicting the end of Law and Order episodes.Less
Erik GartlandUniversity of Wisconsin - Madison, Graduate Student/ResearcherMore
Erik Gartland is a Master of Public Affairs candidate at the La Follette School of Public Affairs at UW-Madison focusing on poverty alleviation and homelessness prevention. In addition to his coursework, he is a Graduate Researcher at the Institute for Community Alliances helping develop a report on the underlying causes of racial disparities in the populations experiencing homelessness in the state of Wisconsin. Prior to returning to school, Erik worked as a community organizer for the Sound Alliance-IAF in Seattle helping pass the Best Starts for Kids initiative in King County. Following that campaign, he returned to his hometown of Madison and accepted a position at Epic Systems as a Project Manager. After being accepted into La Follette’s graduate program he decided to return to service work helping build houses in the Twin Cities as part of a Habitat for Humanity Americorps position.
Erik received his Bachelor’s degree from St. Olaf College, where he majored in Economics and Political Science, with a minor in Statistics. His interest in policy started after being accepted into St. Olaf’s Social Entrepreneurship Scholars program, which provided the opportunity to work for a summer at Beacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative in St. Paul. Over the course of the program as a Public Policy Intern, Erik researched the connections between federal housing policy and the current state of homelessness to help better inform advocates for housing justice. Recently, Erik has become interested in data journalism and how to better use technology to address issues in policy, government, and political organizing.Less
Jared PradoCity of Madison Police Department, Police OfficerMore
Jared Prado is a licensed attorney, a police officer, and an educator. He currently serves as a Community Outreach & Resource Education officer for the City of Madison Police Department, where he uses his unique skill set and passion for teaching to inform and empower community members, with a special focus on youth engagement.
Jared began his professional life working night shift patrol for the City of Madison, while pursuing his law degree at the University of Wisconsin. At the UW Law School, Jared served as a student attorney for both the Oxford Federal Project and the Immigrant Justice Clinic, which allowed him to work directly with clients and understand their unique circumstances. As a student attorney, Jared put in long hours and strived to build authentic, trusting relationships with his clients, which ultimately earned him the 2015 Clinical Legal Education Association Outstanding Student Award. As a licensed attorney, Jared has taken on pro bono immigration cases, and he serves on the board of directors for the Community Immigration Law Center, a non-profit organization that fills a real need within Dane County by providing legal representation to detained immigrant clients.
At the Madison Police Department, Jared has devoted himself to several important workgroups, to include the department’s Equity Team, Amigos en Azul, the Field Training Officer cadre, and the Peer Support team. Since 2015, Jared has led the Judgment Under the Radar training group, which is comprised of police officers who deliver implicit bias trainings and workshops for both law enforcement and allied professionals alike. Jared now serves on an elite cadre of national police trainers who deliver cultural humility training to agencies across the United States. Locally, Jared is a certified Defensive and Arrest Tactics instructor, and he enjoys teaching in his department’s recruit academy. Jared strongly believes that police have a critical role to play in improving the justice system, and that no major improvements are possible without first engaging with, and listening to, the community.
Jared grew up on the east side of Madison but he has family ties in Mexico and southern California. In his spare time, Jared enjoys spending time outdoors with his wife, playing and watching sports, and traveling.Less
Jason MeehanLaw StudentMore
Jason Meehan is a 3L at the University of Wisconsin Law School with plans to practice Criminal Law. Jason currently serves as the President of the UW Black Law Student Association. While in law school, Jason has competed on the UW Moot Court Team, which allows students to compete against other law schools in oral and appellate advocacy competitions around the country. This past fall, Jason was awarded the Valandale Scholarship from the Wisconsin Association for African American Lawyers for demonstrating a strong commitment to serving the people and issues of the African American community. Jason has experience working in Corporate Law as well as Criminal Law. Most recently, Jason clerked for the Federal Defenders for the Eastern District of Wisconsin. There, he wrote legal memos and briefs and assisted attorneys in representing indigent criminal clients in Federal proceedings.
Before attending law school, Jason attended Northern Illinois University where he studied Business Marketing and earned a certificate in Professional Sales. Jason was also a Student-Athlete and earned both academic and athletic First Team All-Conference awards for his accomplishments. While at NIU, Jason was awarded the Jackie Robinson award from St. Louis County’s NAACP for exemplifying leadership and for his dedication to community service and mentoring
Being a native of St. Louis City, Jason has a deep understanding of the injustices minorities and people of low socioeconomic backgrounds face in our inner-cities. Jason was inspired to practice law by his father who has practiced criminal and civil rights law for over 40 years. With this background, Jason believes that his love for helping people will be best utilized working within the criminal justice system.Less
Lydia HartlaubSt. Francis Law Center, University of Wisconsin Madison, Legal assistant, law studentMore
Lydia is a third-year law student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison law school. She currently works as a legal assistant for two immigration law firms, Layde & Parra, S.C. in Milwaukee and the St. Francis Law Center in Madison. Lydia has done clinical work in the areas of health care and insurance law during her graduate education. Passionate about public interest law and racial equality, Lydia hopes to start a career in immigration law when she graduates from law school this spring.
Lydia speaks fluent Spanish and uses it frequently in her legal work; she is also currently learning the Portuguese language. In college, she received Research Honors for a project which compared the treatment of Spanish and Mexican actors in Hollywood films and Spanish-language films, and she maintains an interest in Hispano-American culture and racial representations in film. Having studied English Literature in college as well, Lydia is an avid reader and reads daily for pleasure as well as education.
Lydia is excited to be an NLC Fellow this year because she wants to meet other progressively-minded young professionals in the Madison area. She is greatly energized by working for racial equality through her legal career and hopes she can learn the leadership skills to accomplish this goal more effectively in the future.Less
Marlo FieldsCommunity OrganizerMore
Marlo is a recent graduate from the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point where he received a bachelor's degree in Political Science, History, and International Studies. He recently finished up organizing for Congressman Ron Kind’s reelection campaign. Through the campaign, he was able to work with Democrats in the Central Wisconsin area to promote progressive candidates up and down the ballot and encourage voters to participate in their civic duty. To that end, by working with great volunteers, voter turnout, especially in Portage County, was the highest it had ever been for a midterm election. High turnout led to the reelection of Senator Tammy Baldwin, Congressman Ron Kind, and replacing Scott Walker with Tony Evers as the Governor of Wisconsin, along with other progressive state wins.
Service work has always been close to Marlo’s heart. After graduating in 2015 he enlisted in the Peace Corps, where he taught English in rural China. Through this life-changing experience, Marlo was able to teach future English instructors in China’s most impoverished province, Guizhou. However, it was not what he taught that he will remember the most, but rather what he learned living in China for two years. China and Chinese people have much to offer the world and it was truly a blessing to get a thorough look at a unique culture.
In April 2017, when his alma mater advocated cutting 13 majors and lay off dozens of employees, he helped and other concerned students and alumni helped organize protests against the measures. What started out as the first campus sit-in since the Vietnam War led to a statewide movement that outlined the divestment in higher education from the state budget.
Marlo has always been fueled by working and helping others in interdependent ways. He will continue to do so with his great sense of humor and optimistic spirit! Real change only comes about by letting your best parts shine, all the while, letting those around you shine as well.Less
Morgan NortonAssembly Democratic Campaign Committee, Campaign ManagerMore
Morgan Norton received her BA in Political Science from the University of Minnesota- Twin Cities in 2018. While in college she worked on social justice issues both local and international through Amnesty International. It was her time in Amnesty International that showed her how much a community can work to better the world and make a difference for hundreds of people at once. She has taken that experience with her as she continues her political work in Wisconsin.
She found her passion for social justice in the form of fair representation when it comes to Wisconsin politics.
Morgan recently worked as a campaign manager for the highly targeted 85th State Assembly district in the 2018 general election. It was her time on the campaign and her lifetime in the Northwoods of Wisconsin that sparked her interest and a deeper understanding of the need for fair redistricting. Living in deep-red gerrymandered communities she found herself being the sole voice on many issues throughout her life including Education, Healthcare, and LGBTQ Rights. However, being a lone voice meant she was able to learn both sides to an argument and understand why the other side held those beliefs. She has used that understanding to work with her communities and assist political candidates who want to make those communities better. She hopes to continue her work in Wisconsin politics and one day be a representative herself.Less
Sam OttersonWisconsin State Assembly, Legislative AideMore
Sam Otterson is a Legislative Aide in the Wisconsin State Assembly. Passionate about working collaboratively to find solutions to problems in society today, Sam is drawn to issues such as education and reforming the criminal justice system. Prior to her work in the Legislature, Sam was an administrative intern at NARAL Pro-Choice Wisconsin, during which she helped create and effectively run their first ever Giving Tuesday fundraiser. Through her experience at NARAL Pro-Choice Wisconsin, Sam discovered her passion for state politics and became involved in the legislative process.
Interested in social issues and the development of social structures, Sam received an education in Sociology from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. While at the University of Minnesota, her focus was on Criminal Justice. She credits her intrigue of social problems and solutions to her active and involved family, almost all of whom are educators.
In her free time, Sam is usually coaching youth swimming, reading used books, or celebrating an upcoming holiday. Excited to add NLC to her list of free time activities, Sam looks to build connections with other enthusiastic progressives that may allow new and meaningful developments on the roadmap to fixing social problems in Wisconsin.Less
Sarah SmithSarah for Wisconsin, Deputy Campaign Manager/ Transition LeadMore
Sarah Smith grew up in Eau Claire, the daughter of an educator and community organizer. She traveled to Madison to pursue her undergraduate degree in History and History of Science at the University of Wisconsin and fell in love with the community. She remained in Madison to earn her Master of Science degree in Educational Policy. During her time at UW-Madison, she interned with Representative Donna Seidel and Representative Dana Wachs. Sarah also grew up volunteering through her local 4-H club and continued in Madison working with Three Gaits Therapeutic Horseback riding throughout her time in college.
Upon graduation, Sarah began working at Epic on their population health module. After three years of working to ensure the quality of healthcare delivery to populations and our most marginalized communities, Sarah left to pursue her passion for politics. She began working as the Campaign Manager for Sarah Godlewski’s campaign for Wisconsin State Treasurer after assisting on the Save Our Fiscal Watchdog ballot committee earlier that year. Sarah was proud to be part of such an innovative, groundbreaking campaign that has succeeded in electing a qualified and dedicated State Treasurer. She is now leading Treasurer-elect Godlewski’s transition team by coordinating experts and analyzing policy to develop budget and hiring recommendations for Godlewski’s upcoming term.
In her free time, Sarah enjoys spending as much time as possible with her dog, Milo, and traveling to western Wisconsin to visit family.Less
- Alex Joers
- Andrea Nino de Guzman Ramirez
- Anna Gouker
- Dominique Ricks
- Emma Bukowski
- Grace Colas
- Hannah Akbik
- Iliana (Lana) Wood
- Jonathan Solari
- Kaitlin Marquardt
- Kianna Goodwin
- Laura Minero
- Mary Jane Giesey
- Megan Diaz
- Michael Horecki
- Molly Jones
- Nela Kalpic
- Nick Hwang
- Rachel Baldwin
- Reginald Thedford
- Adri Viswanatha
- Alex Kautza
- Angela Janis
- Angela Holecko
- Anna Gouker
- Anna Strand
- Anne Readel
- Ayah Sarsour
- Becky Rasmussen
- Brian Evans
- Caroline Gomez-Tom
- Cassy Krueger
- Drew Curtis
- Hayley Chesnik
- Iliana Wood
- Ja Mel Ware
- Jazzmyne Adams
- Joseph Brydges
- Kennita Hickman
- Laura Minero
- Layla Kaiksow
- Liz Smulian
- Megan Diaz
- Michael Horecki
- Mike VanDenHeuvel
- Mike Pawlak
- Molly Murray
- Nathan DauSchmidt
- Obiageli Nwabuzor
- Reginald Thedford
- Robyn Wohlfeil
- Sofia Ascorbe
- Thaddeus McGuire
- Trevor Cooper
- Valerie Chesnik
- AJ Carver
- Anna Kaminski
- Carolyn Scherf
- De Kendrea Stamps
- Flora Csontos
- Fredrick Perry
- Hank Brand
- Jacob Jokisch
- James Macken
- Joe Meeker
- Josh Klemons
- Kate Christopherson
- Laura Larsen
- Lindsay James
- Monica Sundal
- Nathan Toth
- Soong Kit Wong
- Taylor Beale
- Will Kramer
- Andrew Hoyer-Booth
- Britt Cudaback
- Bryon Eagon
- Chad Chriestenson
- Elizabeth Kunze
- Emily Winecke
- Hanna Vadeboncoeur
- Jacob Hollnagel
- James Lloyd
- John Magnino
- Kevin Kopplin
- Lauren Gould
- Matthew Braunginn
- Renee Turgeon
- Alicia Lux
- Bryan Mette
- David Crowley
- Elizabeth Miller
- J. Adam Woodford
- Jeremy Lyon
- Jessy Servi
- Karalyn (Kara) Kratowicz
- Katie Iliff
- Kayla Blado
- Kelsey Morin
- Lisa Geason-Bauer
- Mark Greene
- Rebecca Gittelson
- Roo Harrigan
- Sophia Rogers
- Tyler Hendricks