Speakers/Session Facilitators

Speaker Bios in PDF format

 

We are thrilled to have an all-star group of experts and activists speaking and leading ‘action workshops.’ Presenters are listed alphabetically. Photos and biographical information for other presenters will be added as they are obtained.

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Sachin Chheda is director of the Fair Elections Project, a nonprofit, nonpartisan campaign to make American elections meaningful again. He also chairs the WI Fair Maps Coalition, which counts 16 organizations and hundreds of individual activists as members. The Fair Elections Project helps to lead the fight to end map-rigging and political gerrymandering in Wisconsin and across the country. This includes public education, research, supporting litigation, advocating for legislation, and inspiring citizen activism to make elections meaningful. In addition to working with the Fair Elections Project, Sachin serves as a strategic consultant to nonprofits, economic development organizations, labor unions, and political candidates.

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Kathryn Fahey is the Executive Director of The People. She works full time for the organization from Grand Rapids, Michigan. Prior to working for The People, Katie was the Executive Director of Voters Not Politicians in Michigan where she led over 14,000 state-wide volunteers to organize and pass a ballot proposal with 61% of the vote resulting in changing the Michigan constitution to make political gerrymandering illegal. Prior to VNP, she worked in the garbage and recycling industry. Katie received her BA in Sustainable Business from Aquinas College in 2012.

 

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Gary Goyke was elected to the Wisconsin State Senate as a Democrat in 1974 and served until 1983. While in office, Gary served as the chair of several committees and subcommittees, including Education and State Institutions and Banking and Insurance. Gary Goyke and Associates now offers public affairs, grassroots advocacy, association management, special events, referendum coordination, local and state lobbying services, as well as speaking engagements and assistance with and the distribution of press releases.

 

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Since 2017, Laura Gottlieb has been involved with Our Wisconsin Revolution, Indivisible Madison, and most prominently, TAR—the Tuesday Action and Resistance group that is loosely affiliated with Indivisible Madison. Meeting weekly, TAR members have made a practice ovisiting legislators and state officials; writing letters and postcards; participating in assorted local rallies, protests, and vigils; and working against the dark store loophole and for election integrity.  TAR’s primary focus in recent months has been gerrymandering. We have been involved in collecting names on petitions at the Dane County Farmers’ Market, attending and testifying at budget hearings, visiting every state senator's office asking them to co-sponsor bills on non-partisan redistricting, and distributing Fair Maps yard signs.

 

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Erin Grunze is the Executive Director for the League of Women Voters of Wisconsin, a nonpartisan, grassroots organization advocating for active and informed participation in government that will celebrate its national centennial in 2020. Erin works on voting rights advocacy including for a fair maps redistricting process. The League's mission to empower voters and defend democracy is driven by the incredible and dedicated volunteers working on voter education and government policy in our communities to make a real and direct impact for a better representative democracy throughout Wisconsin.

 

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Jay Heck became the executive director of Common Cause (CC/WI), Wisconsin’s largest non-partisan citizens reform advocacy organization with more than 2,500 members in 1996. CC/WI is considered by Wisconsin’s major newspaper editorial boards and by pro-reform legislators of both major political parties to be Wisconsin’s most effective and influential state reform organization.

 

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Chris Lamar is Legal Counsel for Redistricting with the Campaign Legal Center, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting and strengthening the democratic process across all levels of government. Chris works on Redistricting policy, which includes advocating for the creation of Independent Redistricting Commissions.

 

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Sarah Pearson is a co-founder and co-chair of Women’s March Wisconsin. She has worked to organize Women’s Marches in Milwaukee and Madison as well as voter-mobilization events, rapid response actions, and trainings. A passionate advocate for survivors of sexual violence, Sarah helped organize Women’s March activists from around the country to occupy Washington D.C. during the fight against Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination. As a Midwest Organizer for Housing Works, a community-based AIDS service organization, Sarah trains activists in the art and science of birddogging and mobilizes them to participate in town halls and candidate events throughout the Midwest. She is currently a student at Alverno College and a recipient of the 2019 Student Activist Award from the Wisconsin Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies. She lives in Milwaukee with her partner, Ryan, and kitten, Okada.

 

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Corinda Rainey-Moore serves as the Community Outreach and Engagement Manager for Kids Forward (formerly known as Wisconsin Council on Children and Family). Corinda has resided in Madison for over 39 years and spends much of her time volunteering to help marginalized communities. Corinda is the President of the Equal Opportunities Commission, Board President of Safe Communities, President of Urban League of Greater Madison Guild and President of The Madison Network of Black Professionals. Corinda has two master degrees in Communications and Community Mental Health with an emphasis on Substance Abuse and is currently working on her doctoral degree in Educational Leadership at Edgewood College. 

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Matt Rothschild is the executive director of the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign. Prior to joining the Democracy Campaign at the start of 2015, Matt worked at The Progressive magazine for 32 years. For most of those, he was the editor and publisher of The Progressive. While there, he wrote a book entitled You Have No Rights: Stories of America in an Age of Repression. And he edited an anthology called Democracy in Print: The Best of The Progressive, 1909-2009. His opinion pieces have run in the Chicago Tribune, the LA Times, the Miami Herald and a host of other newspapers. And he’s appeared on Nightline, NPR, C-SPAN and WISC-TV, where he does election night commentary. If you live in Wisconsin, you may have heard him on The Devils Advocates, WOJB, WORT or Wisconsin Public Radio. Matt's first job out of college was working for Ralph Nader at a publication called Multinational Monitor. A birdwatcher, he lives with his wife Jean in the Town of Dunn.

 

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Dana Schultz is the Executive Director at Wisconsin Voices, the 501c3 state table in Wisconsin, where she leads a dynamic network of over 60 progressive organizations. WI Voices is the only group unifying supporting groups led by and serving youth, Black, Latinx, Southeast Asian, Indigenous, and white progressives on pro-democracy solutions, voter engagement, and relational organizing. Wisconsin Voices fights for every voice and takes on the role of backbone for a larger, collective agenda. Dana’s background is in student organizing then community organizing with women to make the workplace better for women and moms. She loves her job at Wisconsin Voices, aligning a unique and diverse set of organizations in Wisconsin to achieve bigger things together. Dana has a B.A. in Political Science and Communications with a Masters in Political Science. She ran for State Assembly in 2010, played D1 basketball at UW Milwaukee, and has a growing family who anchor her thirst for making Wisconsin a good place for families of all races and incomes to live and thrive.

 

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Josh Silver is the founder and director of RepresentUs, a post-partisan, nonprofit organization that is advancing campaign finance and election reforms across the nation. RepresentUs has built one of the largest grassroots and social media communities in the democracy reform field, with a focus on how to leverage systemic change through mass movements that traverse diverse political ideologies. Josh is co-founder and former CEO of Free Press, an advocacy group that promotes critical journalism and Internet openness. He served as campaign manager of the successful 1998 "Clean Elections" ballot measure in Arizona. Josh publishes widely on democracy, media, election, campaign finance and a range of other public policy issues.

 

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Dan Theno began his career as Vocational Agriculture instructor in Oregon, WI before being elected as a Republican to the Wisconsin State Senate from the 25th District in 1972, where he served for 14 years. Following the Senate, Dan continued in public service as Mayor of the City of Ashland from 1986 to 1989 and with the State of Wisconsin as Director of Intergovernmental Relations and Administrator of State and Local Finances. During the 2010 Census, Dan worked as Partnership Specialist with the United States Census Bureau Office in Chicago. Dan now lives in Green Bay where he is a member of the Traffic Commission, President of a neighborhood association, Chair of the Green Bay Neighborhood Leadership Council and President of Winning Local Elections LLC, a campaign consulting firm.