Staff


The staff of The Opportunity Agenda is composed of a diverse group of professionals who, together, bring experience and expertise in the areas of communications, research, policy, advocacy, law, fundraising, and administration.

Staff

    Ellen Buchman

    President

    Ellen Buchman brings to The Opportunity Agenda a breadth of knowledge, expertise, experience, and relationships having worked among leaders at local, state, national, and international levels for more than 25 years. Prior to joining The Opportunity Agenda in 2018, she served as Executive Vice President for Field and Communications at The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, where she piloted the organization's field and organizing program, and developed and oversaw the vision for the integrated field, communications, and policy work at the center of the organization; led and put into place dozens of successful campaigns; spearheaded mobilization, training and support to national, state, and local coalitions; and created innovative organizing and communications training models for advocacy around the country and at the international level.

    Get to know Ellen

    Anthony Dosonmu

    Accountant/Bookkeeper

    Tony Dosunmu manages The Opportunity Agenda’s accounting and bookkeeping functions and supports office administration. For over six years, Tony has provided essential accounting and auditing support. He has worked with Robert Half International, Colonial Parking, Inc., Lani Eko & Company, CPAs, LLC, and Williams, Adley & Company LLP. He has also served as an administrative assistant at St. John’s University School of Law.

    Get to know Tony

    Esther Dunbar

    Operations Manager

    As Operations Manager, Esther Dunbar is responsible for ensuring high levels of organizational effectiveness, communication, and safety. She maintains the efficiency of business operations, systems and equipment. This includes vendor and facility management, ensuring adherence of HR, financial & IT policies and procedures as well as expense reporting, budget forecasting, and management.

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    Julie Fisher-Rowe

    Director of Narrative and Engagement

    Julie Fisher-Rowe oversees the organization’s strategic framing work, translating communications research and theory into practical messaging strategies for advocates and activists. In this role, she works with groups across the country to identify opportunities to build public support for social justice issues and policies. Through a mix of trainings, workshops, tool development and individual discussions, Julie helps social justice groups hone in on the right messages for their goals, audiences, and other organizational needs.

    Get to know Julie

    Tanesha Jackson

    Executive Assistant

    As Administrative Assistant at the Opportunity Agenda, Tanesha Jackson provides invaluable logistical support in implementing the work of the organization.

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    Elizabeth Johnsen

    Outreach and Editorial Director

    As the Outreach and Editorial Director, Elizabeth Johnsen oversees the organization's outward-facing platforms and content, including the website, digital programming, and printed and electronic publications. She manages the review and distribution process for the organization's distinctive editorial and messaging materials, while actively growing The Opportunity Agenda's national network of partners and stakeholders.

     

    Get to know Elizabeth

    Tad Kroll

    Development Manager, Institutional Giving

    As the Development Manager for Institutional Giving, Tad Kroll is responsible for researching and writing proposals, updates, reports, and other materials to funders. He works to help create and cultivate mutually satisfying relationships with foundation and individual funders through well-crafted and engaging materials and events. He also works with program staff to help improve tracking and evaluation systems to provide the best information to improve programming and demonstrate effectiveness to funders.

    Get to know Tad

    Adam Luna

    Vice President for Programs, Strategy, and Impact

    Adam Luna serves as the Vice President for Programs, Strategy, and Impact at The Opportunity Agenda where he oversees all aspects of the organization’s programmatic mission work. Adam brings over 20 years of experience in issue campaign management, overseeing strategic communications, policy & legislative work, coalition building, and project management across a wide range of long term systemic challenges such as retirement security and immigration.

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    Eva-Marie Malone

    Director of Training and Criminal Justice

    As the Director of Training and Criminal Justice, Eva-Marie Malone utilizes skills and expertise in strategic communications, organizational development, and technology to create innovative training programs for our partners. She also leads organizational criminal justice reform work, including narrative development, communications strategy and capacity building, enabling our partners to tell their persuasive and authentic story about the need to define safety for all members of our communities.

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    Porshéa Patterson-Hurst

    Research Program Strategist

    Porshéa Patterson-Hurst brings experience in the translation and communication of technical and complex research data into readily accessible language to her position as the Research Program Strategist at The Opportunity Agenda. In this role, she consults with allies in the field to identify and obtain pertinent research and field needs, utilizes quantitative methods to perform exploratory data analysis on digital discourse related to immigration, and curates and shares public opinion research with partners in The Opportunity Agenda network.

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    Christiaan Perez

    Manager of Media Strategy

    Christiaan Perez collaborates with the training and research teams to develop communications strategies to help elevate materials and messaging that augments on-the-ground struggles for racial and social justice.

    Get to know Christiaan

    Sughey Ramirez

    Cultural Strategies Associate

    Sughey Ramirez brings extensive experience translating language and culture for social change to her Cultural Strategies role at The Opportunity Agenda. Over the years, through positions in research and strategy, development, and community outreach, she has worked with public and private sector leaders to advance issues such as health equity, affordable housing, immigrant rights, and racial justice.

    Get to know Sughey Ramirez

    J. Rachel Reyes

    Digital Communications Manager

    As the Digital Communications Manager, J. Rachel Reyes leads the creation, development, and implementation of dynamic digital strategies across all of The Opportunity Agenda’s online platforms and social media networks. Prior to this role, she served for seven years as the Director of Communications for the Center for Migration Studies of New York (CMS), a think tank and educational institute devoted to the study of international migration and public policies that safeguard the dignity and rights of migrants, refugees, and newcomers. Rachel, an attorney by training, brings significant experience in law and policy to her position at The Opportunity Agenda.

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    Betsy Theobald Richards

    Director of Cultural Strategies

    Betsy Theobald Richards leads the organization’s Creative Change efforts with artists, influencers, and advocates to shift narrative, culture, and policy towards greater and more equal opportunity for all. Betsy brings over two decades of experience in philanthropy, performing arts, Indigenous cultures, museums, arts education, media, and community advocacy to her role.

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    Chrystian Rodriguez

    Training and Partner Engagement Manager

    As the Training and Partner Engagement Manager, Chrystian Rodriguez is responsible for advancing The Opportunity Agenda’s mission to provide quality training, systems, and support to aid our partners in designing effective media communications strategies. Chrystian also manages collaborations and coordination of The Opportunity Agenda’s organizational partnerships around the country.

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    Charlie Sherman

    Research and Evaluations Associate

    Charlie Sherman brings experience in nonprofit communications and equity focused policy research to his role as Research and Evaluations Associate. In this role, Charlie helps manage the Narrative Research Lab, and also supports additional Opportunity Agenda original and collaborative research projects. Additionally, Charlie tracks and analyzes The Opportunity Agenda’s organizational metrics

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    Erin Strek

    Development Associate, Individual Giving and Events

    As Development Associate for Individual Giving and Events, Erin Strek plays a crucial role in supporting the Advancement Team, including resource development, database management, donor relations and event coordination. Prior to joining the Opportunity Agenda, Erin spent time developing her fundraising skills at Culver Place Strategies, a fully LGBT owned, New York City and State based, political consulting firm. Additionally, Erin spent over two years as Search Manager at Hedley May, a global boutique executive search firm.

    Get to know Erin

    Leslie Weber, CFRE

    Vice President for Institutional Advancement

    Leslie Weber brings to The Opportunity Agenda a broad range of non-profit executive and development experience. She has been instrumental in expanding revenue for organizations as diverse as The American Place Theatre, The National Council for Research on Women, and the Prospect Park Alliance, where she served as Vice President of Development and played a key role in the Park’s $74 million Lakeside Campaign.

     

    Get to know Leslie

    Jade Wilenchik

    Communications and Training Associate

    As Communications and Training Associate, Jade Wilenchik works to support and enhance The Opportunity Agenda's training, media, and partner engagement strategies. Much of her academic and professional experience has been rooted in worker’s rights and economic justice, having held leadership roles in Emerson Progressives and Radicals in Defense of Employees (USAS Local 196), sat on the Executive Committee of the Newsguild of New York, and worked in the offices of Jobs with Justice MA. Prior to joining The Opportunity Agenda, she was the Network Policy Manager at the Roosevelt Institute, an organization committed to rewriting the rules that define our social and economic realities. 

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    Erika Williams

    Director of Human Resources and Operations

    As Director of Human Resources and Operations, Erika Williams oversees functions which include: the administration of organizational policies/procedures, employee performance management, employee satisfaction/engagement, training/development, legal compliance, contract engagement, vendor relationships and organizational accounting/finance, among other activities.

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Interns

Summer 2020 Interns to be announced

Communications Institute Fellows

The 2019 Communications Institute will focus on The Power of Voice in a time when social justice leaders are being actively silenced. The Opportunity Agenda is proud to launch these voices into the discourse to reframe the debate for social justice in the United States.