|Advisory Board Chairs|
The 2013 - 2015 Democratic GAIN Advisory Board Chairs
See a full list of Advisory Board Members or sign up to join the Advisory Board.
Maggie Brickerman, Advisory Board Chair
Maggie Brickerman is the Executive Director of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin. Maggie has had extensive experience working in leadership positions in many of the hardest-fought local races in Wisconsin during recent election cycles. She has worked for both the Assembly and Senate Democratic Campaign Committees, and as Communications Director in the office of Assembly Majority Leader Tom Nelson.
Guy Cecil is the Executive Director of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee where he has fought hard to maintain a Democratic majority in the Senate. Prior to this position, Guy served as Chief of Staff for Colorado Senator Michael Bennet. Guy was instrumental during the 2006 cycle as the DSCC’s political director when Democrats won the Senate majority. After that, he served as the national political and field director for Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign.
In 2002, the Florida native was the coordinated campaign director for Mark Pryor, who knocked off incumbent Tim Hutchison in Arkansas. Senator Bennet calledCecil "instrumental to our success in November," when the appointed senator beat back a nationwide GOP tide to hold onto Colorado'sSenate seat. Guy is considered to be one of the brightest strategists and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid lauded Cecil as "an incredible talent”
Madalene Mielkeis a Principal of the Arum Group, LLC with over a decade of experience with progressive organizations and political campaigns. Madalene's experience includes leadership roles asDirector of Training and Curriculum for the Ron Brown-Paul Tully Institute for Political Action (BTI), the former training arm of theDemocratic Party, the New Democrat Network (NDN), The Democratic National Committee (DNC), and several Democratic coordinated and presidential campaigns.
As the Director of Training and Curriculum for BTI, Madalene was responsible for the development of training materials for all disciplines of a campaign and traveled throughout the United States to train campaign professionals as well as state party officials, candidates and Democratic activists. She served as the Lead Trainer for the Finance Director trainings in which Congressional Members and the national committees would send their staff to be trained.
At the New Democrat Network (NDN), Madalene served as Membership Development Director, she worked in collaboration with Congressional Members from the New Democrat Coalition (NDC) as well as the Founding Co-Chairs of NDN, Senators John Breaux and Joseph I. Lieberman.
Madalene's clients have included organizations and campaigns includingFriends of Jonathan Miller (KY Treasurer), NAACP National Voter Fund, Underwood for Governor, Leadership ’02 (former Vice President Gore’s Leadership PAC), WE LEAD, Democratic National Committee, American Medical Association PAC, John Kerry for President, Friends of Hillary, Mike Honda for Congress, New Vision America PAC, Akaka for Senate and numerous other progressive organizations.
Eddy Morales, Diversity Initiative Chair
Eddy Morales is the director of the Latino Engagement Fund at the Democracy Alliance. Eddy brings more than ten years of senior leadership experience to the Democracy Alliance, most recently serving as the Deputy Director of Voto Latino, an organization founded by Rosario Dawson aimed at increasing Latino civic engagement. While there, he helped increase the annual operating budget and oversaw strategy and day-to-day operations.
Previously, Eddy was the Deputy Director of Leadership Development at the Center for Community Change, where he launched a leadership development program to recruit and nurture low-income community organizers of color into community based organizations.
At the DA, Eddy is the Director of the Latino Engagement Fund, a collaborative effort between individual and institutional donors designed to strengthen high-performing Latino civic engagement organizations and increase the political power of the growing Latino population.
Since 2009, Eddy has been continually recognized by Washington Life Magazine as one of the most influential people under 40 in DC.
Tom Manatos currently serves as the Director of Government Affairs at The Internet Association, which represents the nation’s leading Internet companies and advances public policy solutions to strengthen and protect internet freedom. Tom is also the founder of TomManatosJobs.com, known as one of the top jobs lists on Capitol Hill and Washington, DC.
Previously, Tom was the Senior Advisor to the Chair, Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz at the Democratic National Committee where he handled Members of Congress for the Chair. Beforehand, Tom worked for Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi both in the Speaker’s office and the Minority Leader’s office. Most recently Tom was the Senior Advisor for Member Services as well as Outreach Advisor for young Americans to Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi.
Prior to his duties in the Member Services department, Tom was the National Trip Director and Director of Advance for Speaker Pelosi. Before his time with Representative Pelosi, Tom served as acting Deputy Press Secretary for Senator Paul S. Sarbanes of Maryland and was an advance desk at the Gore/Lieberman national campaign headquarters in Nashville, Tennessee.
Tom was born and raised in the Washington, DC area in Bethesda, Maryland and attended Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. He obtained his masters degree in government from Johns Hopkins University in the spring of 2010. He resides with his wife, Dana and son, Andrew in Bethesda, Maryland.
Gwen Walz, Elected Support Initiative Chair
Married in 1994, Tim and Gwen Walz moved to Mankato, Minnesota two years later. The couple accepted positions teaching and coaching at Mankato West High School. Gwen and her husband ran Educational Travel Adventures, accompanying high school juniors and seniors on summer educational trips to China. She has two children - one daughter and one son.
Lisa Bianco, Elected Support Initiative Chair
Lisa Bianco served as Maryland Rep Steny Hoyer's state political director is now working as Democratic Congressman John Delaney's district director.
Ben Goldfarb, Youth Engagement Initiative Chair
Ben Goldfarb is Executive Director of Wellstone Action, the nation’s leading training center for progressive organizers, candidates, and campaign workers, with over 55,000 alumni. A seasoned community and political organizer, Ben served as Senior Advisor for Al Franken’s successful U.S. Senate campaign in 2008, where he developed the campaign’s constituency organizing programs and directed the GOTV operation – a campaign ultimately won by just 312 votes. Ben managed U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar’s (D-MN) successful 2006 campaign, making her the first woman Senator from Minnesota, and was GOTV Director for the Kerry-Edwards campaign in Minnesota in 2004. Ben co-founded and directed Project Lakes and Plains, a political research consortium that played a critical role in the successful election of Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton in 2010.
From 2003-2005, during his tenure as Executive Director of Progressive Minnesota (now TakeAction Minnesota), the organization led successful efforts to raise the state’s minimum wage, engage tens of thousands of new immigrants in the political process, and win dozens of ballot initiative, local, and state elections. From 1998-2003, Ben was an organizer with progressive organizations and electoral campaigns.
Ben founded and ran an independent music company from 2003 to 2006, and, most importantly, is the partner of an amazing teacher and father of a four-year-old daughter and twin baby boys.
Christine Pelosi is the daughter of Nancy Pelosi, a Democratic Congresswoman from California and former Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, and businessman Paul Pelosi. Pelosi is the author of Campaign Boot Camp 2.0 and Campaign Boot Camp: Basic Training for Future Leaders' (2007), books used in her leadership trainings for candidates and causes.
She directs the AFSCME PEOPLE Congressional Candidates Boot Camp, which prepares Democrats for campaigns and has helped 26 challengers get elected to the U.S. House of Representatives. Her work in public policy and politics includes service as Executive Director (1998–99) and Platform Chair (1996–present) of the California Democratic Party; Deputy City Attorney (Construction and Trial Teams) and Assistant District Attorney (Sexual Assault and Child Abuse Unit) for the City of San Francisco; U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Special Counsel in the Clinton/Gore Administration (1999–2001); and, Chief of Staff to U.S. Representative John F. Tierney (2001–2005).
She holds a JD from the University of California Hastings College of the Law and a bachelor's degree from Georgetown University’s Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service.
Christine Pelosi is also a superdelegate for the Democratic Party. Christine Paule Pelosi endorsed Senator Barack Obama on June 3, 2008, when he won the popular delegate vote. Hers was one of a handful of votes who put him over the top to secure the democratic nomination. Since January 2011, Pelosi has also served as the Interim Executive Director of the Young Democrats of America.
Rod Snyder has served as President of the Young Democrats of America since July 2010. He is a former President of the West Virginia Young Democrats and former YDA Mid-Atlantic Region Director.
Rod is a native of Jefferson County, West Virginia. He graduated in 2002 with honors from Eastern University near Philadelphia with a Bachelors degree in Political Science and currently works as a lobbyist in Washington, D.C. on agriculture policy.
He was a candidate for the West Virginia House of Delegates in 2004 and was named the state’s Outstanding Young Democrat of the Year in 2005. In 2008, he managed three successful campaigns in West Virginia, including the election of the youngest ever female legislator in the history of the state. Rod served on the Agriculture and Rural Policy Advisory Committee for the 2008 Barack Obama for President campaign and has made appearances on MSNBC, Fox News, CBS News, BBC News, C-SPAN and Al Jazeera to provide political analysis.
In 2011, Rod was selected as a partner for the Truman National Security Project, and he recently traveled to Cairo to speak on the role of young people in the transition to democracy in Egypt. He also serves as a board member for the American Council of Young Political Leaders.
Rod is an accomplished singer-songwriter and was a semifinalist on season four of the television show American Idol. In 2006, he released his debut full-length album entitled "Leaving Hollywood Behind.”