Mark Winston Griffith, Board Chair
Mark Winston Griffith is the founding director of the Brooklyn Movement Center, a membership-led organization that builds social change campaigns in Central Brooklyn. He is also on the faculty of the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, where he teaches a class on urban social issues. He previously served as the senior fellow for economic justice, and then interim executive director, at the Drum Major Institute for Public Policy, a progressive think tank, and as co-director of the Neighborhood Economic Development Advocacy Project, which promotes economic justice in low-income neighborhoods and communities of color. He was the co-founder of the Central Brooklyn Partnership and Central Brooklyn Federal Credit Union, which at the time was the nation’s largest Black-owned, community-based financial cooperative. Mark has served as a fellow with the Open Society Institute, the Revson Fellowship at Columbia University, and the Rockefeller Foundation’s Next Generation Leadership program. Mark currently resides in Brooklyn, New York.
Jay Harris, Secretary Treasurer
From 1991 to 2009, Jay Harris was the president and publisher of Mother Jones, the award-winning investigative news organization. Jay is also a Distinguished Senior Fellow at Demos and the former publisher of The American Prospect. Most recently, Jay has been a media consultant and the director of the We the People Campaign, a project started with Jim Hightower and Katrina vanden Heuvel to fight the dominance of corporate influence in elections and policy. As a consultant to independent media brands, Jay has specialized in strategy for organizations with “hybrid” business models — ones that support journalistic missions through a combination of commercial and philanthropic revenues. Jay is the president of the board of the Public Intelligence Foundation and serves on the board of the First Amendment Coalition and the Communications Advisory Board of Human Rights Watch. Jay helped found The Media Consortium, an alliance of independent, progressive media working together to extend the reach and impact of their journalism. He has a B.A. in English from Duke University and a master’s in management from the Yale School of Management. Jay currently resides in San Francisco, California.
David Drucker, Officer
David Drucker is a highly accomplished telecommunications entrepreneur. An attorney by background, he served from 1987 to 1993 as vice president and general counsel of EchoStar Satellite Corp., the company that created DISH Network. David founded and was chairman of WildBlue Communications, a telecommunications company that delivers high-speed internet service by satellite. David has served as chief executive officer of @Contact, LLC, an organization that held a license to construct, launch and operate a constellation of middle earth orbit Ka-band satellites. David has been involved in successfully building out numerous FCC licenses, including television and radio licenses in Colorado, Alaska, and Florida. He currently serves on the board of Colorado Public Television in Denver. David currently resides in Evergreen, Colorado.
Nabil Echchaibi, Officer
Nabil Echchaibi is associate professor and founding department chair of the College of Media, Communication and Information at the University of Colorado Boulder. He specializes in identity politics among young Muslims in the Arab world and in diaspora. His work on diasporic media, Islam and modernity has appeared in a number of scholarly books and research journals such as the Journal of Arab and Muslim Media Research, as well as the Guardian, USA Today, and The Huffington Post. Echchaibi is currently writing his book Unmosquing Islam: Muslim Media and Alternative Modernity, and his previous books include Voicing Diasporas: Ethnic Radio in Paris and Berlin Between Culture and Renewal and International Blogging: Identity, Politics and Networked Publics. Echchaibi recently directed a project funded by the Social Science Research Council, which compiled a cultural history of Muslims in the Mountain West region. A native of Morocco, Echchaibi earned his B.A. from Mohammed V University in Rabat, and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Indiana University-Bloomington. He currently resides in Louisville, Colorado.
Renaldo Pearson, Officer
Renaldo Pearson is co-mission director of Democracy Spring. In 2016, Democracy Spring organized the largest action of American civil disobedience this century with a 140-mile march from Philadelphia to Washington, D.C., culminating in the arrest of more than 1,300 people on the steps of the U.S. Capitol, demanding immediate Congressional action to end voter suppression and the corrupting influence of big money in politics (the prologue for H.R.1, the For the People Act). Renaldo is a 2011 graduate of Morehouse College and former Harvard University administrator and Social Engineer-in-Residence. He co-founded the Boston Democracy Circle with Frances Moore Lappé, and also serves on the board of Voter Choice Massachusetts (advancing ranked-choice voting). He is featured in award-winning filmmaker Josh Tickell’s new book and film, The Revolution Generation: How Millennials Can Save America and the World (Before It’s Too Late). Renaldo currently resides in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Alexandra Samuel, Officer
Alexandra Samuel is a technology researcher, writer and strategist, and the author of Work Smarter with Social Media: A Guide to Managing Evernote, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Your Email (Harvard Business Review Press, 2015). On her blog at the Harvard Business Review, she writes about how the social web is transforming our businesses, our communities and our personal lives. Her writing on technology issues has appeared in media outlets like the The Wall Street Journal, Macworld, Oprah.com, and The Atlantic.com, among others. As the founder and principal with Social Signal, one of the world’s first social media agencies, she shaped the online strategy for a wide range of online community projects, including Tyze, Change Everything, and NetSquared. Alexandra holds a B.A. from Oberlin College and a Ph.D. in Political Science from Harvard University, where her dissertation examined the phenomenon of hacktivism — politically motivated computer hacking — as a window on political participation. As the research director for Digital 4Sight’s Governance in the Digital Economy, she worked with Don Tapscott to create and guide an investigation into the future of government and democracy for an international consortium. Alexandra currently resides in Vancouver, Canada.
Reggie Shuford, Board Vice Chair
Reggie Shuford became executive director of the ACLU of Pennsylvania in September 2011. Prior to joining the ACLU-PA, he served as the director of law and policy at the Equal Justice Society (EJS), a national racial justice strategy group. From 1995-2010, Reggie served as senior staff counsel in the national ACLU’s Racial Justice Program. During his tenure there, he was the ACLU’s chief litigator in challenges to racial profiling, leading national litigation efforts and consulting with ACLU state affiliates and others in cases of “driving while black or brown,” airport profiling, and profiling related to the war on terror. Reggie is a graduate of the University of North Carolina’s School of Law in Chapel Hill, where he was his graduating class president. In 2009, he received the Law School’s Distinguished Alumnus Award. Reggie is a former Harvard Law School Wasserstein Public Interest Fellow and received the 2014 Minority Business Leader Award from the Philadelphia Business Journal and the 2014 Humanitarian of the Year Award from the William Way LGBT Community Center. In 2015, Reggie was selected as a CBSPhilly GameChanger, named Diverse Attorney of the Year by the Legal Intelligencer, and received the Philadelphia Business Journal’s LGBT Business Advocate Award. He is the recipient of the 2016 Living Legal Legend Award from Penn State Law’s Black Law Students Association and the 2016 David M. Rosenblum GLBT Public Policy Award from the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s GLBT Rights Committee. Reggie was named one of Philadelphia’s Most Influential African Americans of 2016 by the Philadelphia Tribune. Reggie currently resides in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Carlos Valverde, Officer
Carlos Valverde is the state director of the Colorado Working Families Party, and former co-director of Colorado Progressive Coalition with Jason McKain, the late Free Speech TV development director. A bridge-builder and principled strategic planner who is focused on building power by finding the common good, Carlos has deep roots in Colorado, and spent two years serving with the Peace Corps in Nicaragua. Carlos currently resides in Denver, Colorado.
Sarah Van Gelder, Officer
Sarah van Gelder is a founder of a new nonprofit start-up, PeoplesHub, which offers live, online training to local groups around the country who want to make change where they live. She is co-founder and former editor at large of YES! She just completed a book based off on her road trip around the United States: The Revolution Where You Live: Stories from a 12,000 Mile Journey Through a New America. Sarah writes a column and conducts interviews for YES! Magazine, and speaks on leading-edge innovations that show that another world is not only possible, it is happening now. Her discussion topics include the new economy, climate solutions, alternatives to prisons, food, water, peacemaking, health care, happiness, and more. Sarah co-founded Suquamish Olalla Neighbors, which builds bridges between Native and non-Native residents of the Port Madison Reservation. She co-led a statewide effort to return the home of Chief Seattle to the Suquamish Tribe and is a member of the board of directors of the tribally-chartered Suquamish Foundation. Sarah has traveled in Latin America, India, China, and Central America. She was a founding board member of Winslow Cohousing, and previously was a television and radio producer, a community organizer, founder of a cooperative of food co-ops that linked organic farmers to urban markets. She has two young adult children, and currently resides in Paulsbo, Washington.