Co-Founder and Executive Director
Ian served as Associate White House Counsel from 2009-2011. In addition to counseling the President and senior White House staff on administrative and constitutional law, his responsibilities included ensuring that White House and executive branch officials complied with the laws, rules and norms that protect the fundamentally democratic nature of our government. He received his J.D. from Yale Law School, where he was an Editor of the Yale Law Journal and President of the American Constitution Society.
Co-Founder and Legal Director
Justin most recently served as counsel in Ropes & Gray’s business & securities litigation practice group, where his practice focused on appellate and Supreme Court matters. He has represented clients in the Supreme Court and federal courts of appeals, as well as at the trial level. He has previously served in the Office of the White House Counsel as Special Assistant to the President and Associate Counsel to the President. Justin also worked for Senator Sheldon Whitehouse as Senior Counsel on the staff of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Carlos served as a strategic communications consultant to the United States Department of Defense and a broad range of private, public, and non-profit sector clients. He also founded Boulder Transport, a leading provider of retail and contract transportation services in Colorado. He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and a master’s degree in political management from the George Washington University.
Jonathan most recently was a Litigation Fellow at Stris & Maher LLP, where he worked on Supreme Court matters and complex civil cases. His prior experience includes work in federal and local government. He holds a bachelor’s degree in History from the University of Chicago.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Aaron was Associate Director for Branded Content at Quartz, where he advised Fortune 100 companies on the strategy and production of digitally native media campaigns. Previously, Aaron served as senior policy adviser to Rep. Adam Schiff. He holds a B.A. in political science from UCLA and a M.Sc. from the London School of Economics.
Before joining Protect Democracy, he worked for 6.5 years in the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) – spending most of the time as a Trial Attorney with the Civil Division, Federal Programs Branch. In that capacity, Ben defended against challenges to federal statutes and actions of the Executive Branch. He litigated cases involving a variety of statutes and agencies, including as the lead attorney in cases challenging the Department of Education’s and DOJ’s interpretation of Title IX as prohibiting discrimination against transgender students.
Head of Organizational Management
Victoria most recently served as director of the Baker Center for Leadership & Governance at Georgetown University. Before Georgetown, Victoria was senior advisor to the CEO of TechnoServe, an economic development enterprise that fosters business solutions to poverty, and directed their Global Fellows program. She also advised Fortune 100 companies as a management consultant with Deloitte. Earlier in her career, as a senior program officer at the National Democratic Institute, Victoria partnered with country teams in the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Eastern Europe to design and implement democratic development programs, and worked on global and domestic political campaigns with the opinion research firm Greenberg Quinlan Rosner. Victoria holds an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and a B.A. from Tufts University.
Alexandra has previously served as a career national security leader, in the political arena, and in issue advocacy. Alexandra worked at the Office of Naval Intelligence from 2004-16, where she led the Intelligence Community analytic effort to disrupt arms smuggling and the proliferation of WMD by sea. She also served in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, where she developed policies to prevent the politicization of intelligence analysis. In 2018, she made history as the first openly transgender candidate for Congress from Massachusetts, and has served as a public advocate for transgender equality, community healthcare, and in the Voter Choice Massachusetts movement to adopt ranked choice voting in Massachusetts’s elections. She graduated from Brown University with an A.B. in International Relations, and received her law degree from Brooklyn Law School.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Sara was an Assistant Federal Public Defender in the District of Arizona’s Capital Habeas Unit, where she represented clients facing the death penalty. Previously, she was a fellow at the ACLU’s National Security Project. Before that, she represented low-income clients in Lawrence, MA. Sara served as a law clerk to the late Honorable A. Richard Caputo of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania. In law school, Sara interned for a democracy NGO in Nepal, for the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, and for the EPA. Sara received her J.D. from Columbia Law School and her A.B. from Brown University.
Dagny was most recently a legal assistant within the Global Legal Program at the Center for Reproductive Rights. She also previously served as a paralegal and client advocate with the New York Legal Assistance Group (NYLAG), a nonprofit organization that provides free legal services to vulnerable and low-income New Yorkers, where she was part of the Foreclosure Prevention Project. Dagny received her B.S. in Journalism with a concentration in International Relations from Boston University.
Emerald has a background in direct-service and macro social work and most recently worked for a seed-funded tech startup, specializing in end-to-end customer experience and managing app production training and operations. She previously worked as a trainer for a non-profit’s national learning network, focusing on building implementation capacity for an executive functioning-informed coaching model. Emerald received her Bachelor of Social Work from the University of Texas at Austin and her MSW with an emphasis on program evaluation from the University of Michigan’s School of Social Work.
Sydney was most recently an analyst at Kobre & Kim LLP where she provided support on matters involving international judgment enforcement. Her prior experience includes criminal justice policy and direct services work. She holds a B.A. in political science from Yale University.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Jared spent four years at the Southern Poverty Law Center where he led litigation and advocacy campaigns to reform America’s immigration and criminal law systems. Before SPLC, Jared served as a law clerk to the Honorable James L. Dennis of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and also previously worked as a litigation associate at Jenner & Block LLP. Jared received his law degree from NYU School of Law, where he was an Arthur Garfield Hays Civil Liberties and Civil Rights Fellow.
Soren was most recently a senior vice president at Hill+Knowlton Strategies. Prior to that, Soren worked for communications and digital agencies, Senator John McCain’s campaign for President, Rep. Nick Smith (R-MI), and a rule of law development NGO in India. Soren also worked with a number of Republican electoral and party-political campaigns, including for the U.S. Senate and for Chairman of the Republican National Committee. He is on the board of advisors of Tech Congress and was a Penn Kemble Fellow at the National Endowment for Democracy. Soren received his A.B. from The University of Chicago.
Chris is a communications advisor and writer and editor, most recently as deputy online editor of The Weekly Standard. He previously worked as a legislative aide and communications aide on Capitol Hill. He graduated with a B.A. in economics from Butler University and an M.S. in journalism from Northwestern University.
Sohini was most recently a product manager at Kobre & Kim LLP, where she identified business growth opportunities and worked with firm founders and partners to design and implement yearlong communications and business plans. Her prior experience includes cross-border litigation matters. She holds a B.A. in cognitive science from the University of California, Berkeley.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Corey served in leadership positions in both the policy and campaign arenas. Most recently, he served as a senior campaign advisor to U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren. Prior to that, he served as a Legislative Assistant to U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill and Deputy Campaign Manager of her 2012 re-election campaign. Corey has also served as a state director for Hillary for America and as a grassroots campaigns and media consultant, with a focus on communities of color in “battleground” states.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Deana served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the District of Massachusetts, where she spent four years leading investigations and civil enforcement actions in the areas of healthcare fraud, consumer protection, and civil rights. She previously represented clients in complex commercial litigation and appeals at Bingham McCutchen LLP. After law school, Deana served as a law clerk to the Honorable Jon O. Newman of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and the Honorable Robert P. Patterson, Jr., of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. Deana was also a U.S. Fulbright Scholar in Cairo, Egypt.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Farbod was a Gibbons Fellow in Public Interest & Constitutional Law, where he worked on a range of impact litigation cases in the areas of racial justice, immigration, and national security. Farbod previously served as a law clerk to the Honorable Jacqueline Nguyen of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and the Honorable Kimba Wood of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. He has also worked at the ACLU, the Center for Constitutional Rights, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and Bay Area Legal Aid. Farbod received his J.D. from Stanford Law School.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Emerson worked at Legal Aid of North Carolina, where she served clients in Durham’s Eviction Diversion program. Her prior work experience includes a fellowship at the Pauli Murray Center for History and Social Justice and working on national programs for the Education Team at PBS. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in American Studies and Political Science from Wellesley College, where she concentrated in political theory and education justice.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Rachel Goodman spent nearly eight years as a staff attorney with the Racial Justice Program of the ACLU. There, she focused on economic justice issues, particularly on discrimination in housing and lending, and on technology-driven discrimination. She led successful efforts to force Facebook to disallow racial discrimination in its advertising services and litigated cases addressing discrimination in the subprime mortgage securitization system, racial profiling in air travel, and the school-to-prison pipeline. Rachel served as a law clerk to the Honorable Joseph A. Greenaway, III on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. She holds a J.D. from New York University School of Law, where she was an Arthur Garfield Hays Civil Liberties and Civil Rights Fellow.
Rachel most recently served as an attorney in the Department of Justice on the Civil Division’s Appellate Staff. Before joining DOJ, she served as a law clerk to Chief Judge Diane P. Wood of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, and Judge John D. Bates of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. Previously, she has worked for the Department of Health and Human Services, implementing Obamacare in Medicare, as well as on national political campaigns. During law school, Rachel worked for the Senate Judiciary Committee and for Gupta Wessler, a public-interest law firm. Rachel received her J.D. from Harvard Law School.
Blake most recently served as a communications manager with Our Turn, working to improve the quality of the public education system. Prior to this, he worked in media relations with Freedom to Marry to help rewrite the messaging playbook on marriage for same-sex couples and shift public opinion, which lead to a historic victory at the Supreme Court. He previously worked in D.C. as the first-ever fellow for the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus where he served as a resource for Congress and worked legislatively to extend rights, repeal discriminatory laws, and improve the lives of LGBT people in the US and around the world. He came from a background in field organizing, working on a number of marriage and nondiscrimination campaigns across the country, including Mainers United for Marriage. He is a graduate of the University of Cincinnati with a BA in Sociology and Political Science, and a concentration in Public Relations.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Aditi Juneja was an Excelsior Service Fellow with New York State Homes and Community Renewal’s Fair and Equitable Housing Office. Previously, Aditi co-founded and led the Resistance Manual and OurStates.org. She created and hosts her own podcast focused on radically inclusive self-care called Self Care Sundays. She was named to Forbes 30 Under 30 for Law and Policy in 2018. She holds a B.A. in Economics from Connecticut College and a J.D. from New York University School of Law.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Cameron was an associate at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher. He has served as a clerk to the Honorable Edith Brown Clement of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and the Honorable Lance Africk of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana. He received his J.D. from Yale Law School, where he was a Notes Editor of the Yale Law Journal.
Christine was most recently a Policy Advisor for Senator Kamala Harris’s presidential campaign. She was previously a Lecturer in Law and San Francisco Affirmative Litigation Project Fellow at Yale Law School and a law clerk to the Honorable Kim McLane Wardlaw of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. She graduated from Columbia University and Yale Law School, where she served on the executive board of the Yale Law Journal.
Before joining Protect Democracy, John was a Clinical Lecturer in Law, Associate Research Scholar, and the Floyd Abrams Fellow and Staff Attorney for the Media Freedom and Information Access Clinic at Yale Law School. He previously clerked for the Honorable Robin S. Rosenbaum on the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit and worked as a litigation associate at Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP. John received his J.D. from Yale Law School, where he was an Editor of the Yale Law Journal.
Becca recently graduated from Tufts University, where she received her B.A. in sociology with a focus on data analysis and interpretation. As a participant, organizer and researcher, she has explored the intersection of politics and non-profit work, especially as they relate to youth activism and civic engagement.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Cerin served as a trial attorney in the Department of Justice Antitrust Division where she investigated mergers and litigated cases enforcing the antitrust laws. Prior to law school she worked as a Senior Legislative Assistant for Senator Barbara Boxer on health care and other issues. Cerin served as a law clerk to Senior Judge Douglas H. Ginsburg on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. She received her B.A. in economics and anthropology from Yale University, and her J.D. from the New York University School of Law.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Stephanie was a Bertha Justice Legal Fellow at the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR). In that capacity, Stephanie worked on litigation that focused on racial and economic justice and government misconduct. During law school, Stephanie worked as a research assistant at the Haas Institute for a Fair & Inclusive Society; an Ella Baker legal intern at CCR; a clerk for the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, Inc.; and an intern at the ACLU of Washington. She received her J.D. from UC Berkeley School of Law, B.A. from Emory University, and A.A. from Gainesville State College (now The University of North Georgia).
Before joining Protect Democracy, Jillian focused on talent acquisition operations for a multinational software and services company. With a professional background in non-profit operations, she has an understanding of and passion for intersectional progressive change and commitment to problem-solving. At GLAAD, the world’s leading LGBTQ media advocacy organization, Jillian was a vital member of the bicoastal operations team and helped maintain the internal logistics and infrastructure of the organization.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Jess was an Equal Justice Works Fellow at the University of North Carolina School of Law, where she launched the Veterans Legal Assistance Project. She has also served as a clerk to the Honorable Susan L. Carney of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and the Honorable Keith P. Ellison of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas. She received her J.D. from Yale Law School.
Paulina has spent nearly a decade serving as an advisor and operative in both local and federal government and on campaigns. She was most recently Senior Digital Strategist at a boutique digital firm where she led email programs for a number of successful high-profile Congressional races. She also previously served in Secretary Penny Pritzker’s office at the U.S. Department of Commerce where she created and advised on excellent internal briefing systems for Secretary Pritzker and Deputy Secretary Bruce Andrews. Paulina earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of California, San Diego and her master’s degree from the George Washington University.
Yascha is an academic whose work concentrates on the rise of populism and the crisis of liberal democracy. His latest book, The People vs Democracy: Why Our Freedom Is In Danger and How To Save It charts the rise of authoritarian populists around the world, and suggests what citizens and civil society organizations can do to stand up for democracy. Yascha is also an Associate Professor at Johns Hopkins University, the host of The Good Fight podcast, a columnist at Slate, and a frequent contributor to publications including The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Atlantic, and Foreign Affairs.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Genevieve spent more than seven years in the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office in various leadership roles, including as Chief of the Civil Rights Division and State Enforcement Counsel. She was responsible for leading a team charged with enforcing a wide range of state and federal civil rights laws and for litigating a variety of affirmative impact cases in state and federal court, as well as other initiatives. Genevieve also served in the Office of the General Counsel at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and spent several years at private law firms, including Paul Hastings LLP, representing clients in employment litigation and related matters. She received her J.D. from Stanford Law School.
Erica most recently served as an Attorney Adviser at the Office of Legal Counsel in the Department of Justice (DoJ). Before joining DoJ, she served as a law clerk to the Honorable Merrick B. Garland of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and as a Senior Policy Analyst at the Center for Democracy & Technology. During law school, Erica worked for the National Security Division at DoJ and the Senate Judiciary Committee. Erica received her J.D. from Yale Law School.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Ngozi worked as an Associate at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP (STB). Prior to STB, Ngozi served as Senior Research Analyst at the Democracy Alliance, where he developed strategy for philanthropists and managed due diligence and impact reviews of national public policy institutes, public interest law firms, and issue advocacy organizations. Ngozi received his B.A. in political science from Yale University, M.B.A. from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, and J.D. from Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law, where he was President of the American Constitution Society chapter and served as Student Member of the American Constitution Society (national) Board of Directors.
Jessica most recently worked for Accenture Operations in a client-facing team lead role, specializing in managing workflows and scaling processes. Prior to that, she served with Teach For America in San Antonio as a corps member and culturally responsive teaching fellow. Jessica received her bachelor’s degree in Marketing Communication from Emerson College, where she was a program coordinator on the Emerson Literacy and Education Empowerment Project, focusing on building media literacy and cultivating healthy relationship models for Boston youth.
John previously served as a law clerk to the Honorable Susan L. Carney of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and the Honorable Lorna G. Schofield of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. Before his clerkships, he worked for nearly four years as a litigation associate at WilmerHale, where he represented companies and pro bono clients at the trial and appellate levels. John holds a J.D. from Yale Law School and a B.A. from Yale University.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Kristy spent 15 years in the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice, most recently as a Deputy Chief, where she supervised and prosecuted federal criminal civil rights violations, including uses of excessive force by law enforcement officers, hate crimes, violence against reproductive health care providers, and human trafficking offenses. She also worked for 4 years in the DOJ’s Civil Division. Kristy has a D.Phil in Modern History from the University of Oxford and received her J.D. from Harvard Law School.
Sonya has over a decade of experience working in criminal defense and justice policy, most recently as a paralegal with the Federal Public Defender Office in Boston. She has contributed to local, national, and international research projects with the Harvard Kennedy School and earned her graduate degree from the London School of Economics.
Angelo was most recently an analyst and knowledge management consultant at Kobre & Kim LLP, where he worked on cross-border disputes and investigations. His prior experience includes work with NGOs focused on human rights and democracy issues, particularly in Latin America. He holds a B.A. in History from Yale University.
Before Protect Democracy, Ben was a non-resident fellow and program associate at the Inter-American Dialogue, a Washington-based think tank, where he worked to promote international cooperation and reform efforts combating corruption and strengthening democratic governance across the Americas. He has also been a research fellow and consultant with several other domestic and global pro-democracy and anti-corruption organizations, including RepresentUs, the Sunlight Foundation, and Global Integrity. Ben received his MPP from the University of California, Berkeley and his A.B. from Harvard University.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Emily focused on global democracy issues at think tanks and international organizations, including the National Democratic Institute (NDI). Prior, she worked in domestic politics, strategic communications, and organized labor for almost a decade. She has observed elections in Latin America, the Middle East, and Africa, and is a political partner with the Truman National Security Project and a Penn Kemble fellow at the National Endowment for Democracy. The Pennsylvania native holds a master’s degree in international development from Sciences Po Paris and a bachelor’s degree from American University’s School of International Service.
Ariela received her masters from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, where she studied conflict resolution, human security, and democratization. She has experience in the think tank, NGO, and governmental spaces. Prior to Fletcher, she worked in the private sector on U.S. fiscal policy and energy and industrials policy. She received her B.A. in intellectual history and English literature from the University of Pennsylvania.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Larry was Executive Director of the Criminal Justice Policy Program at Harvard Law School, a research and advocacy center focused on criminal justice reform. Larry spent nearly eight years as an attorney with the ACLU, where he litigated cases involving race discrimination, economic justice, police practices, educational equity, and a wide array of national security issues. Before that, Larry was a Liman Fellow at the Brennan Center for Justice and a law clerk to Judge Harry T. Edwards U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.
Director of Partnerships
Ahmed graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a master’s degree in political science where he conducted research on democratization, democratic consolidation, and mechanisms for promoting peace and political equality in ethnically divided and post-conflict societies. Having grown up under the Mubarak regime, Ahmed has seen the destructive effects of authoritarian rule firsthand.
Nanya most recently worked as Vice President of Programs at the Center for Political Accountability where she guided S&P 500 companies to adopt transparency & accountability policies and practices for corporate electoral spending. She is the co-creator of TrackYourCompany.org, the first political spending database of its kind. Previously, she served as Associate Director of Communications for the American Constitution Society for Law & Policy. She holds a B.A. from the University of Maryland and a J.D. from the University of Illinois College of Law.
Jon is a former government and politics reporter who helped launch the U.S. Office of Congressional Ethics, where he led communications and outreach efforts for the office and helped secure its reauthorization for continued operations. Previously, he started his own communications shop focusing on nonprofits, and later served as COO of another DC-based communications firm. Following the 2016 election, he co-founded a cybersecurity startup dedicated to government and nonprofit clients. Jon is a graduate of Vassar College and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.
Anne most recently served as Assistant General Counsel for Litigation and Oversight at the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, representing the agency in federal court and before Congress and other oversight bodies. Prior to joining the Consumer Bureau, she spent nearly a decade in private practice, conducting internal investigations and representing companies and pro bono clients in district court and appellate litigation. Anne also served as Counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce during the passage of landmark healthcare, financial reform, and environmental litigation. Anne served as a law clerk to the Honorable Stephanie K. Seymour of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit and is a graduate of The University of Texas School of Law and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Grant was most recently a senior manager of political reform at Harvard’s Institute for Strategy & Competitiveness. Prior, he was a founding partner at Nucleus Impact, a behavioral research and design group. He has also been a Visiting Fellow with UNRWA, a UN refugee agency, and with the Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue, a group that mediates armed conflict. Grant received his MBA from Harvard Business School and MPP from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government where he was a Fellow at the Center for Public Leadership.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Chris Vaeth was part of the team that opened and built the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and he led the CFPB’s Office of Community Affairs. Prior to the CFPB, Chris worked across the nonprofit sector for racial, economic, and social justice. He is also the founder of the How to Help news blog and host of a podcast featuring interviews with people working to protect American multiracial democracy. Chris is a graduate of Cornell University and Harvard Divinity School.
Justin has previously served in each of the three branches of the federal government, including as the Deputy Director of Private Sector Engagement at the White House, as a Policy Aide to U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill, and as a law clerk to the Honorable Rodney W. Sippel of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri and the Honorable James F. Holderman of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. He has also worked on several advocacy and electoral campaigns at the national, state, and local level. He received his B.A. from Truman State University and his J.D. from Washington University School of Law.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Rolando managed the membership and chapters program for Truman National Security Project, where he oversaw the recruitment, application, chapter engagement, and onboarding process for more than 2,000 members. He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Texas at Dallas.
Prior to joining Protect Democracy, Brittany Williams served in the Office of the Solicitor at the U.S. Department of Labor, enforcing federal worker safety, minimum wage, and overtime requirements. Before joining DOL, she served as an Assistant Attorney General through the Honors Fellowship Program in the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office and clerked on the Massachusetts Appeals Court for Justice Scott L. Kafker. Brittany received her J.D. from Harvard Law School.
Before joining Protect Democracy, Sam led organizing campaigns at the Service Employees International Union, where he helped workers bring democracy to their workplaces. Previously, he worked as a political and community organizer, supporting grassroots efforts to build people power and create social change. Sam graduated from Harvard College, where he studied political economy and social movements.
Director of Operations
Before joining Protect Democracy, Beau served 5.5 years in numerous capacities in the White House, most recently as Senior Deputy Director of Operations and Director for Finance. In addition to his work at Protect Democracy, Beau currently serves as an at-large member of city council in Lynchburg, VA, his hometown. He received his undergraduate degree in history and government from the College of William & Mary.