Charles L. Merin serves as Executive Vice President of Prime Policy Group and joins the firm from its predecessor, BKSH & Associates Worldwide, where he was a founding partner. He possesses more than 45 years of Washington experience, beginning with service as a congressional staffer. He began his career as a lobbyist in 1976.
Chuck has established himself as the premier lobbyist for service industry interests in Washington. His many clients include: the National Restaurant Association; Dunkin’ Brands, Inc.; National Retail Federation; International Franchise Association; Loews Corporation; Home Instead Senior Care; Littler’s Workplace Policy Institute; the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association; and Commisimpex.
Chuck has previously represented the American Hotel and Lodging Association; the Coca-Cola Company; the National Football League; the International Council of Shopping Centers; Marriott International; served as President of the Travel Business Roundtable; the U.S. Travel Association; and many more.
He has served as a member of the Board of Directors of Business for Diplomatic Action, an initiative begun in 2001 to improve American business diplomacy; the Board of America’s Trust, a non-profit, non-partisan public policy organization that aims to bridge partisan and other divisions in order to better address the challenges facing the United States; and as a member of the Woodrow Wilson International Center’s “Strengthening America’s Global Engagement” initiative. Chuck is a member of the Board of Advisers of the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service at Tufts University.
Chuck is an expert in building legislative coalitions and helping clients forge effective, long-term relationships on Capitol Hill. He is perhaps best known for his close affiliation with the Blue Dog Coalition, an alliance of more than two dozen pro-business, conservative House Democrats whose votes are much coveted. In 1999, the Blue Dog Coalition made Chuck an honorary Blue Dog in recognition of his role as a counselor since their inception in December 1994. National Journal has recognized him as one of Washington’s leading Democratic lobbyists, in part a reflection of his closeness to this key bloc of votes. Prominent political analyst Charlie Cook once described Chuck as “one of Washington’s more perceptive lobbyists.”
Chuck has also represented labor, senior citizen, and business trade association interests. During the last two years of the Carter Administration, he was principal liaison between the public and private sectors on a Social Security study conducted under Congressional mandate by the then-Department of Health, Education and Welfare.
He holds a Bachelor’s degree in history and a Master’s degree in international relations from the George Washington University. Chuck is married to Sandy Merin and has two grown children. He lives in Falls Church, Virginia.
A four-star general, Stan is the former commander of U.S. and international forces in Afghanistan and the former leader of Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), which oversees the military’s most sensitive forces. Stan was the founder of the Aspen Institute’s Franklin Project, a predecessor of Service Year Alliance.
He is also the author of the best-selling books, Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World and My Share of the Task: A Memoir. The son and grandson of Army officers, Stan graduated from West Point in 1976, beginning a 34-year career in the military. He retired from the military in 2010 and now serves on the board of directors for JetBlue Airways, Navistar, and the Yellow Ribbon Fund. He is also the chairman of the board for Siemens Government Technologies.
He is also a senior fellow at Yale University’s Jackson Institute for Global Affairs, where he teaches a popular course on leadership. Stan co-founded the McChrystal Group in January 2011. Its mission is to deliver innovative leadership solutions to organizations which help them transform and succeed in challenging and dynamic environments.
First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe has led the charge for Virginia’s children, working with legislators, educators, and advocates to devote more resources to those in need, and to ensure that all young people have the tools to reach their full potential and lead us in the 21st century.
As Chair of the Commonwealth Council on Bridging the Nutritional Divide, the First Lady has brought together stakeholders from diverse sectors of the food system to focus on eliminating childhood hunger in Virginia, developing local agriculture markets, and promoting community efforts that link locally grown food, education, health and nutrition.
The First Lady has been a champion to end childhood hunger in Virginia and across the nation. Working with the General Assembly, Mrs. McAuliffe’s efforts resulted in over $2.5 million in state funding to help schools adopt breakfast after the bell programs proven to expand food access and increase academic performance. This historic investment, in conjunction with Mrs. McAuliffe’s partnership with the No Kid Hungry Virginia Campaign, resulted in 6.5 million more school breakfasts served to Virginia students in the 2015-2016 school year compared to the 2013-14 school year. Her work also helped expand participation in the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) among Virginia schools by 190% from 2014 to 2016, as well as the CACFP Afterschool Meals program, increasing participation by more than 10,000 students each day.
The First Lady is committed to supporting Virginia’s active-duty military and their families. Mrs. McAuliffe is honored to serve as the Governor’s designee to the Virginia Council on the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children. The Council assists in easing the transition of children of military families into Virginia schools, a process that can be difficult due to frequent moves and deployment of their parents. She has made it a top priority to ensure that Virginia provides the most effective supports available in addressing the unique concerns of our service men and women and their families.
Having served as a volunteer over many years in her community, Mrs. McAuliffe recognizes the power of engagement. Under her leadership, Virginia is leading the way to encourage and elevate national service as a pathway for solving challenges in local communities, deepening appreciation for citizenship, and developing valuable workforce training opportunities. Largely as a result of her efforts, Virginia is the first state in the nation to be designated an Employer of National Service.
Mrs. McAuliffe has long been devoted to the arts and education. She has served on the Boards of Trustees of the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and the Smithsonian Institution. She is honored by the opportunity to use her platform as First Lady to help promote the unique historical, cultural and art treasures of the Commonwealth for both tourism and educational purposes.
She is a graduate of The Catholic University of America, with a B.A. in Political Science, and completed her J.D. at Georgetown University Law Center, where she was a member of the Journal of Law and Policy in International Business. After receiving her degree, Mrs. McAuliffe practiced banking and securities law for several years. She and the Governor are the proud parents of five children. Together, they enjoy all outdoor activities and exploring the natural beauty of our Commonwealth, especially our magnificent Virginia State Parks.
Jason A. Mangone is Senior Advisor and Director of Public Private Partnerships and Development at DVS. In this role, Mangone is responsible for establishing and leading cross-sector initiatives to leverage the strengths and support the needs of New York City's veterans and their families.
Prior to joining DVS, he was the first Director of the Franklin Project at the Aspen Institute, an initiative to make a year of national service a common expectation and opportunity for every young American. Mangone led the growth of the Franklin Project and then ushered it through a merger with two other nonprofits to create Service Year Alliance, where he served as Chief Operating Officer. For his work with the Franklin Project team, he was recognized as one of the Mic 50 and also one of the Mighty 25 veterans poised to make a difference in 2015.
In 2011, he was a Research Associate in the Military Fellows Program at the Council on Foreign Relations. From 2006-2010, Mangone was a Marine infantry officer assigned to 3d Battalion, 2d Marines, where he deployed three times, including to Iraq and Haiti. While in the Marines, he served as a rifle platoon commander and 81mm mortar platoon commander, and participated in missions ranging from counterinsurgency to humanitarian assistance and disaster relief.
Mangone holds a Master's Degree in International Relations from Yale's Jackson Institute of Global Affairs, and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science from Boston College. He lives with his wife, Kara and son, Joseph in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, where he likes to cook for and drink with large groups of friends and family. Mangone is raising his son as a Mets, Jets, Knicks, and Rangers fan -- because resilience builds character.
Congressman John B. Larson proudly represents Connecticut's First District. Now in his tenth term, John sits on the influential House Ways and Means Committee—including the Subcommittees on Tax Policy and Social Security, where he serves as the Ranking Member. Throughout his time in Congress, John has proven himself a staunch advocate for Connecticut's working families, our manufacturing and small business ecoystem, and commonsense solutions for the problems Americans face everyday.
Born and raised in the federal housing project of Mayberry Village in East Hartford, John is fond of saying he is the product of public housing, public education, and public service. His father, Raymond, worked for Pratt & Whitney, while his mother, Pauline, served on the Town Council. John graduated from East Hartford High School in 1967 and from Central Connecticut State University (CCSU) in 1971.
Before entering Congress, John taught history and coached football at George J. Penney High School. He was also an owner of Larson & Lysik insurance company, where he saw firsthand the challenges many small business owners must overcome. Following in his mother's footsteps, serving on the East Hartford Board of Education and the East Hartford Town Council. In 1982, he was elected to the Connecticut State Senate, beginning a 12-year tenure representing the 3rd Senate District until 1995. Larson served as Senate President Pro Tempore for eight years from 1987 to 1995.
Major Rebecca “BB” Lange is a proud alumna of the second class of AmeriCorps NCCC Denver Campus (served in 1995). She is currently an active duty Air Force major and serves as a Deputy Legislative Assistant at the Office of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, preceded by a tour as a defense fellow for U.S. Senator Bill Nelson. During AmeriCorps, she built houses and trails with NCCC and served on the AmeriCorps Team for the Games during the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. After her AmeriCorps year, she used her education award at the University of Colorado and enrolled as an Air Force ROTC cadet. As an intelligence officer, she has deployed to Qatar, Kosovo, Iraq, and Afghanistan. She is also a proud military spouse. Rebecca says, “It's all about service. It's the pride in knowing your country needs you and has trained you to answer its call. And in a small, small way, you know you are giving back to the country that allowed you to grow up in freedom. I could not be more proud to be an Air Force officer and an AmeriCorps alum!" She currently sits on the leadership council of the Washington, D.C. chapter of AmeriCorps Alums.
As Chief Program Officer at College Possible, Traci Kirtley oversees programming across new and emerging sites, leads the organization’s advocacy network and policy initiatives, and coordinates the organization’s evaluation efforts. She earned her bachelor’s degree in secondary education from the University of Nebraska, and in 2000 received a Master’s in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. A former high school Spanish teacher, Traci also worked in electoral politics and with Caliber Associates (now ICF International), a government contracting firm providing research and technical assistance services in the Washington, D.C. area. There, she focused her efforts on evaluating and providing training to schools and community organizations. In 2013 she was appointed by Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad to serve as a commissioner for the Iowa Commission on Volunteer Service.
As the Trust’s Executive Director, Jenn leads the foundation’s efforts to fulfill its mission of helping people get along better. Jenn oversees all aspects of the Trust, including setting its strategic priorities, monitoring progress towards goals, and building relationships with key partners to advance the foundation’s vision. Jenn became the Trust’s first fulltime staff member in 2007, where she led the development of the foundation’s strategy and partnership approach to grant-making.
Before joining the Trust, Jenn served as the development director at a nonprofit where she helped double the organization’s annual campaign and spearheaded efforts to build the organization’s development operations. Jenn received her Masters Degree in Regional Planning, with a focus on community development and nonprofit management, and a B.S. in Urban and Regional Studies with Honors, from Cornell University. She is a member of the Leap of Reason Ambassadors Community. Jenn and her husband Jonathan live in New York City with their son Elliott and daughter Abigail.
Jon leads the Trust's campus and community portfolios, supporting a diverse set of partners and exploring opportunities to expand EFCT's work in these areas.
Before joining the Trust, Jon was a Principal at the management consulting firm Booz & Company, advising clients across sectors on strategy and organizational performance. Jon also worked as a consultant at Katzenbach Partners and as a philanthropic advisor at Impact for Education. He started his career teaching politics and history at the Stowe School in England and serving as Director of Education at The Jewish Foundation for the Righteous. Jon earned an undergraduate degree in Government from Harvard University and an MBA from the Yale School of Management. Jon and his wife Lara live in Brooklyn with their son Ethan.
In a career spanning 40 years of leadership and executive management, Paula L. Gavin possesses a unique combination of business, education and non-profit experience, focused on youth, community, and leadership development. Paula was appointed by Mayor Bill de Blasio as the New York City Chief Service Officer, for NYC Service, the city agency which promotes, engages and supports volunteer service in New York City and engages volunteers and service year members to address the City's greatest needs. Paula began her career at AT&T, where she worked her way to vice president, supervising business planning, finance, personnel and training for AT&T's Network Services operational unit of 60,000 employees. She went on to lead the YMCA of Greater New York as CEO and president of YMCA of Greater New York, where she led a multisite organization with a budget of $100 million. At National Urban Fellows, she served as president, supporting leadership development for women and people of color. Paula Gavin received her B.A. from the University of Delaware. She participated in Harvard University’s Advanced Management Program and serves as an adjunct professor at the NYU Wagner School of Public Service.
Michèle Flournoy is Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the Center for a New American Security (CNAS).
She served as the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy from February 2009 to February 2012. She was the principal adviser to the Secretary of Defense in the formulation of national security and defense policy, oversight of military plans and operations, and in National Security Council deliberations. She led the development of DoD’s 2012 Strategic Guidance and represented the Department in dozens of foreign engagements, in the media and before Congress.
Prior to confirmation, Ms. Flournoy co-led President Obama’s transition team at DoD.
In January 2007, Ms. Flournoy co-founded CNAS, a non-partisan think tank dedicated to developing strong, pragmatic and principled national security policies. She served as CNAS’ President until 2009.
Previously, she was senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies for several years and, prior to that, a distinguished research professor at the Institute for National Strategic Studies at the National Defense University (NDU).
In the mid-1990s, she served as Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Strategy and Threat Reduction and Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Strategy. She has received several awards from the Secretary of Defense and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Ms. Flournoy was a member of President Obama’s Intelligence Advisory Board and CIA Director John Brennan’s External Advisory Board, and is currently a member of the Defense Policy Board, the Council on Foreign Relations, and the Aspen Strategy Group, and a Senior Fellow at Harvard’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. She also serves on the boards of The Mitre Corporation, CSRA, Amida Technology Solutions, The Mission Continues, Spirit of America, and CARE, and is a Senior Advisor at the Boston Consulting Group.
Ms. Flournoy earned a bachelor's degree in social studies from Harvard University and a master's degree in international relations from Balliol College, Oxford University, where she was a Newton-Tatum scholar.
Chelsea Clinton works to drive the vision and programmatic objectives of the Clinton Foundation.
As vice chair, Chelsea works alongside the Foundation’s leadership and partners to help create greater opportunities for people to build better futures for themselves, their families, and their communities. Chelsea is a tireless advocate for expanding access to early childhood education, improving the health and well-being of Americans across the country, providing the next generation of young leaders with the resources they need to turn their ideas into action, and ensuring the empowerment of girls and women is a cross-cutting priority across all of the Foundation’s programs and initiatives.
Chelsea also serves on the board of the Clinton Foundation’s affiliated Clinton Health Access Initiative – which works to expand access to lifesaving HIV/AIDS medications and services in the developing world, as well as on the board of the Alliance for a Healthier Generation – a partnership between the Clinton Foundation and American Heart Association, which works to empower kids to develop lifelong healthy habits around food and physical activity.
Chelsea currently teaches at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health and previously worked at McKinsey & Company and Avenue Capital. In addition, Chelsea serves on the boards of the School of American Ballet, the Africa Center, IAC, Expedia, Clover Health, and the Weill Cornell Medical College. She is the co-chair of the Advisory Board of the Of Many Institute at NYU. Chelsea holds a Bachelor of Arts from Stanford, a Master of Public Health from Columbia's Mailman School of Public Health, and both a Master of Philosophy and a Doctorate in international relations from Oxford University.
Chelsea is co-author with Devi Sridhar of “Governing Global Health: Who Runs the World and Why?” which examines the role of public-private partnerships in combating the spread of infectious diseases like AIDS and reducing pervasive chronic health problems like malnutrition. Chelsea is also the author of “It’s Your World: Get Informed, Get Inspired & Get Going” – a book for young readers, ages 10-14 which explores some of the biggest challenges facing our world today and shares inspiring stories of young people who are already making a difference in their own communities and around the globe by tackling them in fun and creative way – and, “She Persisted: 13 American Women Who Changed the World” – a picture book that introduces tiny feminists, mini activists, and little kids who are ready to take on the world to thirteen inspirational women who never took no for an answer, and who always, inevitably and without fail, persisted.
She lives with her husband Marc, their daughter Charlotte, and their son Aidan in New York City.
Leslie Boney leads the Institute’s efforts to identify key issues of importance to the state and develop consensus for action to address. Prior to joining the Institute, Leslie was Vice President for International, Community and Economic Engagement at the UNC system office, coordinating efforts to extend university expertise and services throughout the state.
While serving in the NC Department of Commerce and Governor’s Office, Leslie coordinated the state’s efforts to redesign rural development policy, increase volunteerism, and reform welfare. At the nonprofit MDC, he managed a two-state effort to help rural communities recover from manufacturing job loss. A former teacher and reporter, Leslie serves on the boards of the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina and the Rural Economic Development Center. He received a B.A. from Amherst College.
Reginald J. Brown is the chairman of the firm's Financial Institutions Group and also leads the firm's congressional investigations practice as a member of the firm's Strategic Response Group. Mr. Brown has one of Washington DC's most vibrant and diverse governmental investigations practices, and regularly counsels financial institutions and other industry-leading clients facing complex and high stakes regulatory, enforcement and reputational matters. He joined the firm in 1997, and served as special assistant to the President and associate White House Counsel from 2003 to 2005.
Mr. Brown previously served in the White House Counsel's office, where he was the White House's principal legal liaison to the Departments of Treasury and Housing and Urban Development, as well as many independent financial services agencies. In this role, he provided counsel on a wide variety of issues. Mr. Brown also served as a counselor for the White House Office of Political Affairs, Presidential Personnel Office and the National Economic Council.
In 2011, Mr. Brown was appointed by the Governor of Virginia to serve as a four-year member of the Board of Visitors for George Mason University, where he served on the Board's Audit and Executive Committee. Mr. Brown is also a member of the Board of the Foundation for Excellence in Education, St. Stephen's and St. Agnes School, and the Board of the American Council on Germany. Mr. Brown is also an active member of The Federalist Society. In 2011, Mr. Brown also co-chaired Harvard Law School's Celebration of Black Alumni reunion.
Prior to his government service, Mr. Brown served as assistant to the CEO and vice president of corporate strategy at Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, and as the deputy general counsel to former Florida Governor Jeb Bush. Mr. Brown also served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Federated States of Micronesia early in his professional career. While working as an associate at WilmerHale in the 1990s, Mr. Brown served as co-counsel to victims of the Oklahoma City Bombing in connection with sentencing proceedings for Terry Nichols and Michael Fortier.
Kristen Cambell is Executive Director of PACE and leads our mission to inspire interest, understanding, and investment in civic engagement within philanthropy and to be a voice for philanthropy in larger conversations taking place in the fields of civic engagement, service, and democratic practice. Previously, Kristen ran her own consulting practice focused on civic engagement, education, and leadership. She served the National Conference on Citizenship as its Chief Program Officer, and has held philanthropic roles at the Case Foundation and Points of Light. Kristen is an AmeriCorps Alum and serves on the Alumni Council of The Fund for American Studies, and on the advisory board for groups such as the Annenberg Presidential Learning Center and the Sustained Dialogue Institute.
Founder Emily Cherniack is steeped in the traditions of servant leadership. From her service in AmeriCorps and employment with City Year AmeriCorps, to being part of the founding team of Be the Change--where she led a coalition of over 200 organizations to engage 250,000 people for a Day of Action in support of the $6 billion Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act of 2009--Emily has worked tirelessly to serve our country and support others who serve.
Emily’s path to politics came when her boss and mentor, Alan Khazei, decided to run for the US Senate in 2009. Khazei asked Emily to become his Deputy Campaign Manager and, although he was defeated, Emily learned a great deal from his campaign and the power of political leaders who chose to serve country before self.
This experience led Emily to conclude that our current system for recruiting political talent is broken. The current talent pipeline is intentionally exclusive, and has significant barriers that prevent transformational leaders from successfully running for office; the only way to change that is to change the pipeline. New Politics was founded in 2013 to address exactly that.
Emily graduated from George Washington University with a Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice and Psychology and a Masters Degree in Education Policy. She lives in Boston.
For more than two decades AnnMaura has worked to expand opportunities for young people to serve across the United States and around the world. She serves as President of Voices for National Service, a coalition of hundreds of service organizations that work together to advance citizen service policy, established in 2003. Additionally, AnnMaura is a member of City Year’s Management Executive Committee, overseeing City Year’s international work, public policy, and public affairs.
After college, AnnMaura served in the Jesuit Volunteer Corps in Southern California where she helped to create and lead a counseling program for refugees. After returning to Washington D.C., she directed a national grants program at Very Special Arts, an international organization dedicated to increasing opportunities in the arts for people with disabilities. In 1989, AnnMaura joined Youth Service America, where she organized the first National Youth Service Day, launched the New Generation Training Program and led a policy working group of leaders from the national service field to draft a set of recommendations that informed the design of AmeriCorps. In 1995, AnnMaura joined the newly created Corporation for National and Community Service as Deputy Director, Independent Sector and served as liaison to the foundation and national nonprofit community. After leaving CNCS, AnnMaura served as director of the AmeriCorps Anniversary Committee and as a policy consultant to the Grantmaker Forum on Community and National Service.
AnnMaura holds a B.A. in political science from the College of the Holy Cross. She serves on The Franklin Project Leadership Council, the Advisory Board for the Eli J. Segal Citizen Leadership Program at Brandeis University, the Federal Advisory Council of the Presidio Institute, and the Boards of Directors of the Jesuit Volunteer Corps, My Good Deed, Freedom Now, City Year South Africa and City Year UK. She also serves as a principal of the newly created Service Year Alliance. In January 2015, AnnMaura was selected for the first class of the Presidential Leadership Scholars Program, a joint initiative of the Bush, Clinton, Bush and Johnson Presidential Libraries.
Glenn Blumhorst is President and CEO of National Peace Corps Association (NPCA), a private, non-profit organization at the center of a community of more than 225,000 individuals who have experienced the Peace Corps in 141 countries since 1961. Founded in 1979 and headquartered in Washington, DC, NPCA’s mission is “to champion lifelong commitment to Peace Corps ideals.” During his tenure, Blumhorst has led NPCA’s historic transformation from a dues-based alumni association to a community-driven social impact organization.
Prior to joining the NPCA, Blumhorst enjoyed an illustrious 18-year career with ACDI/VOCA, more recently leading the establishment and successful growth of ACDI/VOCA’s worldwide Community Development practice area as Managing Director. He also served as Country Representative and Chief of Party on several major USAID-funded projects and programs throughout Central and South America. His work has taken him to over 65 countries and enabled his near-native Spanish language fluency.
Blumhorst launched his career by serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Guatemala from 1988 to 1991. He holds a Master of Public Administration and a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture, both from the University of Missouri-Columbia. He is a licensed private pilot.
Emma Adelman was a Program Development and Fundraising Fellow at RespectAbility. She also managed the organization’s Twitter account and contributed to the Born This Way #BTWchat Twitter chats.
Adelman strives to make the world a better place, and is dedicated to the Jewish value of Tikkun Olam. After graduating from Mount Holyoke College, Adelman joined Repair the World to help launch an innovative fellowship in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Repair the World strives to engage millennials and other community members in service learning. Adelman later joined the Jamie Kirk Hahn Foundation as Program Coordinator. She organized a range of programs, which fought for better food access and an improved educational system, including the Fresh Food Challenge.
As a child in North Carolina, Adelman became accustomed to advocating for her own rights and the rights of her classmates. While in high school and at Mount Holyoke College, Adelman worked with faculty, staff and students to advance the status of students with disabilities on campus. After living in Peru and Spain, she recognized and appreciated the importance of the Americans with Disabilities Act—too many students don’t know their own rights to be able to fight for them.