Democracy Alliance - are your dollars supporting their businesses?

June 13, 2010 at 1:09pm

The Democracy Alliance is a first-of-its-kind partnership of change-makers who are committed to a stronger democracy and a more progressive America. Launched in 2005, the Democracy Alliance has played a leadership role in forming a more integrated progressive community which has created greater efficiencies and cost effectiveness in executing progressive strategies, developing policy, and fostering leadership.

The platform created by the Alliance provides a premier opportunity for individuals to leverage the impact of their progressive philanthropy. It connects the individual efforts of donors with those of other donors, high-impact organizations, and visionary political strategists and leaders.

Powered by shared values, the Democracy Alliance has emerged as one of the largest drivers of progressive activist funding in the country.

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Leadership at Democracy Alliance - READ CLOSELY AND CAREFULLY

Board of Directors

Robert McKay - Chair
Mr. McKay is the president of the McKay Family Foundation, which supports community-based organizations working for long-term social, economic, and political progress in California. In addition, He
funds a variety of issue advocacy and other work that promotes civic
engagement and voter participation. In 2002, Mr. McKay was the author
and principal funder of a California ballot initiative to promote
Election Day voter registration. He is the managing partner of the McKay
Investment Group, which provides venture capital for early-stage
technology and consumer product companies. Mr. McKay was Chair of the
2004 California HAVA Advisory Committee, and is active on many corporate and non-profit boards, including Ms. Foundation for Women, San
Francisco Art Institute, Salon Media Group, and Mother Jones magazine.

Anna Burger - Vice Chair
Called "the most powerful woman in the labor movement" by Fortune Magazine, Burger is Secretary-Treasurer of SEIU and Chair of Change to Win which represents six million workers and develops organizing campaigns aimed at ensuring that workers benefit from today's
global economy. Burger also oversees SEIU's political operations and
grassroots election work, which helped elect President Obama and
candidates nationwide. An outspoken voice on the role unions can play to
restore economic fairness, Burger serves on the President's Economic
Recovery Advisory Board. Burger began her career in 1972 as a
Pennsylvania state caseworker before she became SEIU Local 668's first
female president.

Steven Phillips - Secretary
Steve Phillips is an attorney and political organizer in San Francisco. He is the President and Founder of Over the past twenty years, Steve has worked as an education reformer, attorney,
and elected official.

In 1992, at the age of 28, Steve successfully ran for a seat on the San Francisco Board of Education, and he became the youngest elected official in the history of San Francisco. Steve attended Hastings College of the Law, and, in 1997, he opened the Law Offices of Steve Phillips where he practiced civil rights and employment discrimination law. As an attorney, Steve successfully litigated against a broad number of entities ranging from municipalities to multi-million dollar corporations.

Steve has written nearly 100 columns and essays that have been published in newspapers across the country. In 2003, Steve founded, a statewide social justice organization working with
community organizations and activists to build political power in

Drummond Pike - Treasurer
Drummond Pike is founder and chief executive officer of Tides Network. Awarded as an Outstanding Foundation Professional, Drummond helped pioneer the advent of donor advised funds in philanthropy; and,
through his leadership, Tides has helped increase the capacity and
effectiveness of thousands of social change organizations. Prior to
founding Tides in 1976, Drummond served as executive director of the
Shalan Foundation, an organization dedicated to economic change and
environmental sustainability. Drummond also co-founded and served as
associate director for The Youth Project in Washington, D.C.; and he was
among the original founders of Working Assets, a telecommunications
company dedicated to progressive philanthropy and political activism.
His extensive public service work includes membership on several boards
of directors, including the Environmental Working Group and Democracy
Alliance. Drummond received a Masters of Political Science from the
Eagleton Institute at Rutgers University after graduating with Honors
from the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Quinn Delaney
Quinn Delaney is president of Akonadi Foundation, which supports organizations building a movement to eliminate structural racism and create a racially just society. She has also been very active in the
ACLU for many years. Quinn likes to work collaboratively on issues of racial justice, civil liberties and building a progressive infrastructure, both
nationally and in her home state of California.

James D. Gollin
James D. Gollin was educated at Princeton University, the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and Kokusai Daigaku (International University of Japan) as well as in France and Italy.
After work at a number of think tanks in Japan and the US, Mr. Gollin
joined Nomura Securities in Tokyo and then Morgan Stanley. He managed
securities funds as well as M&A, real estate, resort development and
other projects. He has worked in socially responsible business and
environmentally-friendly venture capital.

Mr. Gollin is a Director of the Angelica Foundation, funding environmental, pro-democracy and human rights groups in the Southwest U.S. and Mexico. He is President of the Board of Rainforest Action
Network, where he has overseen successful campaigns leading to landmark
agreements between environmentalists and major industries. He is
actively working to build progressive infrastructure in New Mexico,
where he lives. He is also an award-winning writer and photographer

Nick Hanauer
Nicolas "Nick" Hanauer is a Seattle-based serial entrepreneur, venture capitalist, author and activist with a knack for identifying and building transformative business models.

In 1995, Hanauer became the first non-family investor in where he served as a Board Advisor until January 2000. During the same time period, he founded and served as CEO of aQuantive, Inc (originally
Avenue A Media) and a short time later founded aQuantive was
acquired by Microsoft in August 2007 for $6.4 billion, the largest
acquisition in Microsoft history, and merged with
in 2001.

He co-founded Second Avenue Partners in 2000 and his current investment portfolio includes, Ice Energy, Modumetal, and Qliance Medical. Prior portfolio companies Insitu Group and Newsvine
were respectively sold to Boeing in 2008 and (Microsoft and
NBC Universal) in 2007. He currently serves as a board member and
advisor to House and Qliance Medical and is vice chairman of

Hanauer began his career in Sales and Marketing at the Pacific Coast Feather Company and still serves as the company's Co-Chairman and Chief Strategy Officer. In 1988, he co-founded Museum Quality Framing Company, which is the largest of its kind on the west coast with 60 stores.
Hanauer directs a significant portion of his time to social and policy
issues. In 2007, he co-authored "The True Patriot" with Eric Liu
(currently in its second printing) and co-founded The True Patriot
Network, a non-partisan group committed to furthering patriotic ideals.
He also co-founded the Washington State League of Education Voters
(LEV), a non-partisan statewide political organization focused on
promoting public education, where he serves as co-president. Hanauer
also serves on the boards of the Cascade Land Conservancy, The
University of Washington Foundation, The Seattle Alliance for Education,
The University of Arizona's Mt Lemmon Science Center and the
Biosphere2; a University of Arizona climate research project.

A Seattle-area native, Hanauer is an avid adventure traveler, who has visited more than 60 countries, a fly fisherman and an amateur astronomer. He and his wife, Leslie, reside in the Seattle area with
their two children.

Ted Trimpa
Ted Trimpa practices in all areas of federal, state, and local legislative law, with a special concentration on public policy, political strategy, and political participation. He has extensive
multistate experience and handles legislative matters on behalf of firm
clients before the Colorado General Assembly and legislatures throughout
the country.

Ted is a sought-after advocate resulting from his deep understanding of the national and multistate political and nonprofit landscape. He has been recognized in national publications, including The Atlantic
Monthly, National Review, The Advocate, and The Weekly Standard for his
central role in designing cutting edge public policy strategies.

Prior to joining Hogan & Hartson, Ted was a shareholder with a national firm where he was responsible for matters before the Colorado General Assembly and had a multistate public policy practice. Ted has
orchestrated the successful passage of several public initiatives,
including major social policy changes and landmark reforms to state
fiscal policy. He also previously served as the Director of Regulatory
Affairs and Assistant General Counsel for a prominent lobbying firm in
Colorado. Before attending law school, Ted served as a legislative aide
for United States Senator Nancy Landon Kassebaum.

Michael Vachon
Michael Vachon has extensive experience in politics, communications, and philanthropy. He currently serves as George Soros' political director. He advises Mr. Soros and the Soros family on political contributions and maintains contact on their behalf with the individuals and organizations they support. Mr. Vachon also manages Mr. Soros' media relations, public appearances, and publishing activities and serves as the spokesman for the Soros family and for Soros Fund Management (SFM). Prior to joining SFM, he was head of public affairs and a member of the executive committee of The Commonwealth Fund. Before that he was director of communications at the Open Society Institute. Before joining the foundation he worked as a journalist. Mr. Vachon holds an MA in international relations from Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs, where he teaches a graduate course in communications strategy.

Rob Stein - Founder
Mr. Stein's critical research about the funding, management, and overall infrastructure of the conservative movement over the last three decades led to the formation of the Democracy Alliance. An attorney, Mr. Stein served as chief of staff of the U.S. Department of Commerce and chief of staff at the Washington office of the Clinton-Gore Transition. He also was a senior strategic advisor to Ron Brown, Chairman of the Democratic National Committee (1989-1992), and has founded and led several non-profit organizations. Mr. Stein currently is actively involved, as both Founder and board member, in the Democracy Alliance.


Joycelyn Bassette Blizzard - Partner and Investment Services Associate Joycelyn Blizzard has an extensive background in both state and local politics, and experience in both public policy and fundraising. Joycelyn is responsible for supporting the Partner and Investment Services teams and will assist with events and researching Alliance investment opportunities. Prior to joining the Alliance team, Joycelyn worked for Governor Timothy Kaine of Virginia as Special Assistant for Constituent Services and in the office of the Secretary of Administration. There she worked on numerous projects including Governor Kaine's Small, Women, and Minority Business initiatives and dedication events for the Civil Rights Memorial. Committed to improving the lives of young people, Joycelyn currently serves as one of the youngest board members of the Commonwealth Girl Scout Council and initiated and led the fundraising efforts for inner city youth leadership development programs in Richmond, VA. Joycelyn also developed and implemented a youth leadership curriculum.
Joycelyn obtained her B.A. in Leadership Studies and History from University of Richmond and is currently earning a Masters of Public Administration at Virginia Tech University. She is married to Linwood Blizzard, II and enjoys traveling, swimming, and live jazz.

Anathea Chino - Manager, Partner Services
Anathea Chino came to the Alliance with significant political and fundraising experience at both the state and local level. Her responsibilities include helping to develop the strategic plan for member engagement and facilitating collaboration between Alliance members and recommended organizations.

Prior to joining the Alliance, Anathea worked as the Development Director at NARAL Pro-Choice New Mexico and as President and founding Board Member of Emerge New Mexico, a women's political leadership program. Anathea began her business career in retail management at Neiman Marcus in Las Vegas, NV and launched her career change in 2004 by moving to Nea Makri, Greece.

Anathea is committed to public service and continues to advocate for women and her Native American community as an Ambassador for Americans for Indian Opportunity. She has worked extensively on promoting civic engagement within the Native American communities in New Mexico and nationwide.

She received her Bachelor's Degree from New Mexico State University. As a transplant to Washington, DC Anathea enjoys all things DC.

Kelly Craighead - Managing Director
As a member of the founding management team, Ms. Craighead has helped provide the leadership, strategic vision, and management capacity necessary to grow the Alliance into one of the largest drivers of progressive activist funding supporting institutions that strengthen democracy and build the overall capacity of the progressive movement.
Ms. Craighead joined the Democracy Alliance after working as a strategic
consultant to Media Matters for America, where she delivered critical seed-financing during its start-up phase. Prior to that, she worked for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, during both her tenure as First Lady and later at her leadership PAC after she was elected to the United States Senate. In the White House, with the rank of Deputy Assistant to the President, Ms. Craighead was the Director of Special Projects and managed special domestic and international initiatives on behalf of the President and First Lady. In addition, Ms. Craighead spent 1992-2000 directing all aspects of Mrs. Clinton's travels abroad and in the United States, and has traveled herself to more than 100 countries. She lives with her family in Washington, DC.

Kimberly Douglas - Office Manager
Kimberly Douglas has experience in customer service, special events, meeting planning, administration, operations and systems management in both nonprofit & corporate organizations. While attending Frostburg State University, Kimberly worked at WPGC 95.5 FM as a broadcast news intern. After graduation, Kimberly worked at the Association of Clinical Research Professionals, where she served as ACRPs 1st Education Services Representative. Kimberly was instrumental in helping design and implement ACRP's Customer Service Center. In 2005, Kimberly joined the Forum for Youth Investment as their Office/Meetings Manager and served as the primary liaison between staff and external vendors. Kimberly also worked as the Administrative Director for the Population Institute.

Kimberly has a Masters degree in Organizational Communications and Human Resources from Bowie State University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Mass Communications, Ballet and Modern Dance from Frostburg State University.

Matt Ewing - Director of New Media Ventures
Matt Ewing is the director of New Media Ventures, a Democracy Alliance project focused on investing in early stage new media organizations. Previously he was the national field director at MoveOn. Over his 5 years at MoveOn, Matt developed the organization's innovative national grassroots organizing model and helped to design and direct the 2006 and 2008 GOTV campaigns. He is a graduate of Grinnell College and Green Corps, the field school for environmental organizing. He is also a former Senior Fellow at the New Organizing Institute.

Kathryn Greenberg - Senior Vice President, Partner Services
Kathryn Greenberg joined the Alliance with an extensive background in development, communications, and public policy. As the Director of Partner Services Kathryn will design and implement a strategy to develop
and grow the partnership, facilitate building the Partner network and
community, and manage overall Partner services efforts and activities.

Prior to joining the Alliance, Kathryn was the Director of Development and External Affairs at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities where she worked to strengthen institutional fundraising and outreach efforts; she was the Managing Director of Internal & External Communications at the Chicago Housing Authority where she helped to transform Chicago's public housing by directing resource development, policy, and communications; and Kathryn directed school health and public housing health initiatives for the Chicago Department of Public Health. Kathryn brings extensive management experience having overseen large departments at both the Chicago Housing Authority and the Chicago Department of Public Health.

Kathryn received her Bachelor's degree from New York University and has a Masters in Public Administration from New York University's Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service.

Dominic Lowell - Analyst, Investment Services
Dominic Lowell conducts research and analysis for the Investment Services team. Prior to joining the Alliance, Dominic attended warthmore College where he was active in local and campus politics, organizing students during the 2008 presidential primary and serving as his senior class' president. He comes to the Alliance from the Center for Progressive Leadership where he was a New Leaders Fellow. Dominic is a native of Salt Lake City, Utah, but his heart now belongs to Washington, DC where he enjoys long-distance running, winter bowling leagues, and far too many political blogs. He is a graduate of Swarthmore College where he received his B.A. in Sociology/anthropology.

Ashindi Maxton - Director of Research and Special Projects
Ashindi coordinates Alliance research efforts, and manages special project efforts. Ashindi came to the Alliance from the NAACP where she was the National Policy Manager for the NAACP, and was responsible for coordinating the cross-cutting work of multiple departments including civic engagement, education, health, international affairs, economic empowerment, and criminal justice. Ashindi's diverse career path also includes positions as the National Policy Director for Teach for America, where she helped set the research and policy agenda of a national organization dedicated to eliminating the educational achievement gap; and as the principal of an arts charter school in Washington DC, implementing a curriculum focused on the visual arts, music, poetry, and architecture.

Ashindi is proud to have been a Spanish bilingual teacher in East Oakland, California, and is amazed that the students she taught in 5th grade are already graduating from high school. Prior to becoming a teacher, Ashindi was a Fulbright Scholar to the Dominican Republic where she completed the first national study of "Race Consciousness in Dominican Children". She graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Vassar College with a degree in Africana Studies and holds a Masters in Public Policy from the University of California, Berkeley.

Shannon Roche - Chief Operating Officer
Shannon Roche oversees staffing, financial management activities, Board communications, and works with the Managing Director on organizational development and to implement the strategic plan for the Alliance staff. Prior to joining the Alliance, Shannon led the fundraising efforts of NYC2012, the committee that worked to bring the 2012 Olympics to New York, and has served in various organizational management, member services and fundraising roles for the DNC, Gore2000 and the Advisory Board Company. Shannon has also consulted in a range of economic development-related capacities for several organizations, including the Enterprise Social Investment Corporation (ESIC), New York City's Department of Small Business Services and the host committee for the 2004 Democratic National Convention.

Shannon received a B.A., cum laude, from Duke University and an M.P.P. from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government with an emphasis on organizational management and urban development. In her free time, she
enjoys reading contemporary fiction, practicing yoga and is an ardent
foodie. She lives in Washington, DC with her husband and their son.

Ryan Rodriguez - Director of Meetings and Special Events
Ryan Rodriguez is responsible for coordinating the Democracy Alliance's semi-annual conferences, assisting with regional events, and working on other partner engagement activities. Prior to joining the
Democracy Alliance, Ryan was the National Events Manager for EMILY's
List, where he organized their national conferences, their major annual
DC luncheon, and a variety of other fundraising events around the
country. Ryan has significant fundraising experience, having worked as
the finance director and on the finance staff for a number of
congressional races including Gwen Moore (WI-04, the first African
American woman elected to the US House from Wisconsin), Eleanor Jordan
(KY-03), and Christine Jennings (FL-13). Before getting his start in
politics, Ryan spent several years at the Smithsonian Institution where
he secured corporate sponsorships and organized opening receptions
across the country for the Smithsonian's traveling exhibition service.
Ryan has a B.A. in political science from the American University. Ryan
is a native of Wisconsin and currently lives in Washington, DC. In his
free time he enjoys reading historical non-fiction about the War of

Andi Ryder - Director, Membership Development
As Director of Membership Development, Andi is responsible for managing and executing a strategic plan to grow and expand the Alliance Partnership. Prior to joining the Democracy Alliance, Andi worked at National Park Foundation managing their donor relations and Stewardship Circle program. She has a long history in fundraising, having previously worked at United Way of Buffalo to strength the Leadership giving program; regional theatre where she helped to create a membership/patron program; and Planned Parenthood in Niagara County where she managed development and public affairs initiatives.

Andi is a recent transplant to Washington, DC from Western New York. She received her BA in political science from Niagara University.

Frank Smith - Consultant (Investment Services)
Francis Smith has been involved in political and public policy issues throughout his career. He is President of a Cambridge, Massachusetts consulting firm specializing in election and non-profit law and policy work. He has served as an Assistant District Attorney in Boston and worked on a number of political campaigns, including two Presidential elections. He is co-author of a recent book on the American healthcare system and writes a monthly newsletter on American politics. He is a graduate of Georgetown University and Boston College Law School, and a member of the Massachusetts Bar. He has served on a number of non-governmental organization boards.

Alexandra Visher - Director of Communications and Strategic Partnerships
Alexandra Visher is responsible for developing and managing the Alliance's internal and external strategic communications plans. Prior to joining the Alliance, Alexandra was the deputy communications director and policy director for a United States Senate campaign. In that capacity she was responsible for managing the strategic communications plan for earned and paid media, as well as developing comprehensive policy papers on education, healthcare, and energy. In between campaign adventures, Alexandra worked in the development office of a progressive think-tank and advocacy organization, and assisted with their major gift solicitation efforts. During the 2004 presidential campaign Alex worked as a press secretary in Wisconsin during the general election, and worked on voter mobilization and outreach efforts during the Iowa caucuses. Before heading out on the campaign trail, Alexandra spent several years at a leading media consulting firm where she helped provide a range of strategic communication consulting services to candidates and issue campaigns. Alexandra is a native of Oakland, California and now lives in Washington, DC. She has B.A. in political science from the University of California, Berkeley and studied at the University of Paris, La Sorbonne. In her free time, Alex enjoys yoga, reading, traveling, volunteering, and spending time outdoors.

Felicia Wong - Senior Vice President, Investment Services
Felicia Wong manages the research and development of the Alliance's strategic investment portfolio and has led the restructuring of the DA's investment process over the last year.

Prior to joining the Alliance, she was Vice President, Operations and Vice President, Product Development at Teachscape, a K-12 education services company. In these roles, she was responsible for the company's annual operating plan and the development and delivery of all company products. Felicia served as a White House Fellow in the Office of the Attorney General and held a political appointment in the Office of the Secretary of the Navy. Felicia has extensive classroom experience, having taught on race and politics at U.C. Berkeley as well as high school history and philosophy in Oakland, California. She and her husband also taught English to Tibetan children in Tagong, Ganze Prefecture, China.

Felicia holds an M.A. and Ph.D. in political science from the University of California, Berkeley, where she specialized in international relations, comparative politics, and political theory. Her doctoral dissertation, which focused on the politics of race and framing in K-12 urban education reform, received the 2000 American Political Science Association award in Race, Ethnicity, and Politics. She received her undergraduate degree with Honors from Stanford University and lives in San Francisco, California with her husband and two children.

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*** a little side note...this group works in conjuction with the George Soros Secretary of State Progect ... our-state/

MORE INFO HERE (Includes a list of members) ... y_Alliance ... hare_topic