Seth co-founded TurboVote while receiving a Master's in Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. He previously worked as a research associate at the Council on Foreign Relations (where he founded CFR's annual capture the flag game), a program administrator at the Institute for International Education, and a berktern at Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet and Society. While earning a BA in economics at Columbia University, Seth served as student body president, leading the council in successfully lobbying Columbia to reform its financial aid policies. In 2011, he was honored as one of Forbes magazine's "30 Under 30" in the field of law and policy. Seth is also a Draper Richards Kaplan entrepreneur and Ashoka Fellow.
Kathryn Peters is a co-founder of TurboVote. Her belief in better democracy has taken her from campaign organizing in rural Missouri to a Master's in Public Policy at the Kennedy School of Government to political rights monitoring in Afghanistan. Katy has also worked for the information management team for the United Nations Department of Safety and Security and the National Democratic Institute's Information and Communications Technology staff. In 2011, she was honored as one of Forbes magazine's "30 Under 30" in the field of law and policy.
Wes got his start building PCs in high school as a part-time job and has been geeking out ever since. He got involved in progressive politics in 2004 when he joined the online organizing team of the Public Interest Network. There, he worked with over 75 different non-profit organizations to help them craft and execute online fundraising and advocacy campaigns. In 2010, he joined the Democratic National Committee's Innovation Lab, building voter registration and virtual phone banking tools used by tens of thousands of people in the 2010 election cycle. He currently lives in Denver with his wife and son. When not making the Internet safe for democracy, he enjoys brewing beer and spending time in the mountains.
Sam got his start in politics in 2006 as a field organizer and staff assistant for a congressional campaign. Later, he worked as social media director for statewide and senate campaigns. In 2009, Sam was a research assistant for Eli Pariser's The Filter Bubble. Bostonians know him as “Burgerman”—the marathon-running, burger suit-clad, Game Show Network-sponsored mascot for B.good burgers. His work inspired the “Burger Brigades,” which have raised over $50,000 for local Boston charities. Sam graduated from Harvard University in 2011 where he was elected as first class marshal.
Paul Kominers graduated from MIT in 2012, and has previously worked both as a berktern at Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet and Society and as a research assistant for Benjamin Edelman at Harvard Business School. At MIT, Paul chaired a student committee responsible for representing undergraduates on education issues and co-chaired the Educational Studies Program (MIT ESP). He continues to volunteer with Learning Unlimited, MIT ESP's national spinoff. In 2012, Paul was honored with MIT's Karl Taylor Compton Prize for his contributions to the university, and he serves on the MIT Corporation, MIT's Board of Trustees.
Matt Cordeiro came to TurboVote by way of New Jersey, where he was the student body president of Rutgers University in New Brunswick. His work on campus included three community campaigns to bring together students and city residents to reform the New Brunswick city government. Before becoming student body president, he co-founded New Jersey United Students, the first ever statewide student association for New Jersey.
Troy came to Colorado to work in technology and planned to stay only a couple of years. Fourteen years later, he's still loving Colorado and technology. He has worked for companies big and small, largely with a focus on building the backends of web applications. He's worked on sites in real estate, yellow pages, newspaper, and online conferencing. During the 2008 election cycle he got involved with the political scene, caucusing and volunteering for canvassing. On the days he's not behind a keyboard, he's often snowboarding, hiking, biking, camping, working on DIY projects, or frequenting craft coffee shops and micro breweries.
Junie François Pswarayi
Brooklyn-born and raised, Junie recently returned to the great borough after attending the University of Maryland, College Park and residing for many years in Maryland and Washington, DC. She brings ten years of experience from the private sector and non-profits, including employers as diverse as Language etc, The Africa Society, and a renowned Democratic polling firm in Washington, DC. Her most recent endeavors before joining TurboVote have been centered on devising marketing strategies, client cultivation, and implementing an accounting online system for a startup and consulting with a New York based interior design firm. Outside of work, you can find her trying something new with her husband, watching a scary movie, and encouraging voter participation, canvassing, and volunteering in her community.
Wesley is a recent graduate from General Assembly's Web Development Immersive Program, but has been hacking on web projects since the days of Geocities. Prior to working as a developer, Wesley worked in career development at Teach For America and New York Needs You. Wesley is a California native and recently moved from Brooklyn, NY to work with the TurboVote tech team in Denver.
Jen decided to become a software developer after coding for the first time at a RailsBridge workshop in December 2012. She dove right in by moving from the mountains and attending gSchool, a six-month Ruby/Rails program in Denver. Before becoming a programmer, she worked in the hospitality/skiing industry and construction for both public and private sectors. Jen encourages other women who want to learn how to code by teaching at RailsBridge workshops and through meetups like Women Who Code.
R. Matthew Norfleet
R. Matthew Norfleet hails from the great State of Michigan, and is a recent graduate of Eastern Michigan University (EMU). Norfleet’s affiliation with TurboVote began when he read about its work in an article titled "Voting For The Way We Live Now" in The Chronicle of Higher Education. Soon thereafter, Norfleet reached out and EMU became TurboVote's 25th partner school. As Student Body President at EMU, Norfleet led a team that would go on to collaborate with departments, students and community leaders to integrate the Turbovote platform into EMU’s Fall 2012 civic engagement strategy, modernizing the voting experience for more than 1,000 new users prior to the November election cycle.
Nathan began life as a software developer in the world of financial
services. Dismayed by the day-to-day drudgery of this life, he sought to
find happiness though coding for social good. He spent the next year
working on a mobile campaigning platform for the global south and a
child-centered early literacy education app. Nathan is a graduate of
Carnegie Mellon University. He currently lives in Brooklyn where he
enjoys brewing coffee, beer, and finding ways to escape to the
Chris has been writing code since being introduced to an Apple IIe in elementary school, but waited to start programming professionally until after getting an MFA in Writing from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He’s worked for startups in Denver and New York, mostly hacking on civic data and using technology to connect people with their communities, making TurboVote a perfect match. Chris has acted at the Curious Theatre Branch in Chicago and the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in New York. He lives in Brooklyn with his fiancée, who would really like a dog.
TurboVote Board of Directors
Jim Bildner is a Senior Research Fellow at the Hauser Center for Nonprofit Organizations at Harvard University and an Adjunct Lecturer in Public Policy at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. He is a trustee of The Kresge Foundation, The Nonprofit Finance Fund, Case Western Reserve University, Lesley University Investment Committee, The Public Citizen Foundation, the Health Foundation for the Americas and the Women's Funding Network. He is also on the board of Literary Ventures Fund, The Lizard Island Research Foundation in Australia, a past member of the National Council of Environmental Defense and an Overseer of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Jim is a member of the executive board of WBUR (Boston Public Radio) and former Chairman of its Board of Overseers and an Overseer of WGBH Public TV and Radio. A frequent lecturer, panelist and speaker on social enterprise, capitalization and financial strategies for foundations, non-profits and non-governmental organizations, Jim is also an Adjunct Professor of Law at Case Western Reserve University School of Law. His served as a legislative aide and speechwriter in the United States Senate, two terms as a Selectman and by appointment of the Secretary of HHS to the federal Advisory Panel for Medicare Education to the Center for Medicare/Medicaid Services
Tom Fry is a Managing Director at The Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation (DRK), and is responsible for identifying and supporting the Foundation’s Entrepreneurs and cultivating and engaging donors. Tom is also co-managing the Foundation’s Boston office. Prior to joining DRK, Tom was a Partner at New Profit, and served as the Director of Operations for Grassroot Soccer, leading the operational build-out for the organization in Africa. Before entering the non-profit arena, Tom worked for White Mountains Capital, a merchant-banking entity; Mainspring, a boutique management consulting firm; and the Chubb Group, a specialty insurance company. Tom currently serves on the boards of TurboVote, Generation Citizen, Solar Sister, Compass Working Capital, and Seed Global Health. Tom received his Master of Business Administration from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy and Economics from Boston College.
Trey Grayson was elected as the Secretary of State of Kentucky in November of 2003 in his first run for political office. At the time of his election he was the youngest Secretary of State in the country. Trey quickly became a national leader in elections, civics, business services, and government innovation. He served as President of the National Association of Secretaries of State in 2009-2010 and modernized the Office of the Secretary of State by bringing more services online, enhancing Kentucky's election laws through several legislative packages, and reviving the civic mission of schools in Kentucky by leading the effort to restore civics education in the classroom. Trey was selected for the inaugural class of the Aspen-Rodel Fellowships in Public Leadership and participated in the prestigious Toll Fellowship Program. He is currently the Director of the Institute of Politics at Harvard University.
Amanda Cassel Kraft
Amanda Cassel Kraft co-founded TurboVote. She recently joined the Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services, where she focuses on health care policy reform. Amanda has worked previously as a Dukakis Fellow in the Office of Governor Deval Patrick and as the program officer for public policy at the Women's Foundation of California from 2005–2009. Amanda holds an MPP from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and a BA from Stanford University.
Nicco Mele is a leading expert in the integration of social media and Web 2.0 with politics, business, and communications. As the internet operations director for Governor Howard Dean's 2004 presidential race, Nicco and the campaign team pioneered the use of technology and social media that revolutionized political fundraising and American politics. Later that year, Nicco founded EchoDitto, a leading internet strategy consulting company which has consulted with leading political campaigns, Fortune 500 companies, and nonprofit groups. Nicco also co-founded GeniusRocket.com and launched ProxyDemocracy.com. Named in 2003 by Esquire magazine as one of America's "best and brightest," Nicco was born in West Africa to foreign service parents. He spent his early years overseas in Asia and Africa before graduating from high school in Malaysia and from the College of William and Mary in Virginia. Nicco is currently an adjunct faculty member at Harvard's Kennedy School.
TurboVote Board of Advisors
Susan Crawford is the (visiting) Stanton Professor of the First Amendment at Harvard’s Kennedy School, a visiting professor at Harvard Law School, a co-director of the Berkman Center, and a contributor to Bloomberg View and Wired. She served as Special Assistant to the President for Science, Technology, and Innovation Policy (2009) and co-led the FCC transition team between the Bush and Obama administrations. She is a member of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s Advisory Council on Technology and Innovation.
Archon Fung coined the name TurboVote. He is the Ford Foundation Professor of Democracy and Citizenship at the Harvard Kennedy School. His research examines the impacts of civic participation, public deliberation, and transparency upon public and private governance. His book Empowered Participation: Reinventing Urban Democracy examines two participatory-democratic reform efforts in low-income Chicago neighborhoods.
Colin Maclay is the Managing Director of the Berkman Center, where he works in diverse capacities with its faculty, staff, fellows and extended community to realize its ambitious goals. Colin has worked extensively in India, Latin America and at the international level on ICT policy for the underserved, developing and implementing research projects on topics including rural ICT access, ICTs in education, entrepreneurship, telecommunications infrastructure and policy, electronic government, and IT Enabled Services. Outside Harvard, he is a fellow at the University of Washington’s Center for Internet Studies, Chairman of the Sports for Development Foundation, and Advisor to the World Computer Exchange.
Ellen Miller is the co-founder and executive director of the Sunlight Foundation, a Washington-based, non-partisan non-profit dedicated to using the power of the Internet to catalyze greater government openness and transparency. She is the founder of two other prominent Washington-based organizations in the field of money and politics—the Center for Responsive Politics and Public Campaign—and a nationally recognized expert on transparency and the influence of money in politics. Her experience as a Washington advocate for more than 35 years spans the worlds of non-profit advocacy, grassroots activism and journalism.
Craig Newmark is a self-described nerd, pioneer of the Web, speaker, philanthropist, and a strong advocate of the use of technology for the public good. He is the founder of craigslist, which he started in 1995 and is now one of the world’s most-visited websites. Today, Craig’s focus is craigconnects, which he launched in 2011. The mission of craigconnects in the short term is to promote, expedite and enhance the use of technology and social media to the benefit of philanthropy and public service. Craig currently serves on the board of directors of the Center for Public Integrity, Sunlight Foundation, Consumers Union/Consumer Reports, and Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America.
Andrew Rasiej is a futurist and social entrepreneur, and is the Founder of Personal Democracy Forum, an annual conference and website about the intersection of politics and technology. He is the co-Founder of techPresident.com, the Founder of a not-for-profit organization called MOUSE.org focused on 21st century public education; Co-Founder of Mideastwire.com, which translates Arabic and Farsi news and opinion pieces into English. Andrew serves as Senior Technology Advisor to the Sunlight Foundation which is focused on using technology to help make government more transparent. He is also the Chairman of the NY Tech Meetup, a 15,000 member organization of technologists, venture funders, marketers in New York City.
Clay Shirky is currently focusing on social software and peer-to-peer technologies, and the ways electronic networks shape the social lives of the groups that form there, and vice-versa. Clay writes extensively about the Internet, and his writings have appeared in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Harvard Business Review, and Business 2.0, among others. He publishes a monthly newsletter called "Networks, Economics, and Culture," and his essays are being collected into a book, to be published by O'Reilly and Associates.
We have been funded by the Sunlight Foundation, Google, the Knight Foundation, Weinmann Charitable Trusts, Further Foundation, Youth Engagement Fund, and many individual donors who supported us on Kickstarter.
TurboVote is happily housed in the Blue Ridge Foundation New York incubator space. We receive legal and policy support from the Fair Elections Legal Network, and we are grateful to use election research and forms from Long Distance Voter.