Mark Winston Griffith, Board Chair
Mark Winston Griffith is the founding director of the Brooklyn Movement Center, a membership-led organization that builds social change campaigns in Central Brooklyn. He is also on the faculty of the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, where he teaches a class on urban social issues. He previously served as the senior fellow for economic justice, and then interim executive director, at the Drum Major Institute for Public Policy, a progressive think tank, and as co-director of the Neighborhood Economic Development Advocacy Project, which promotes economic justice in low-income neighborhoods and communities of color. He was the co-founder of the Central Brooklyn Partnership and Central Brooklyn Federal Credit Union, which at the time was the nation’s largest Black-owned, community-based financial cooperative. Mark has served as a fellow with the Open Society Institute, the Revson Fellowship at Columbia University, and the Rockefeller Foundation’s Next Generation Leadership program. Mark currently resides in Brooklyn, New York.
Jay Harris, Board Vice Chair
From 1991 to 2009, Jay Harris was the president and publisher of Mother Jones, the award-winning investigative news organization. Jay is also a Distinguished Senior Fellow at Demos and the former publisher of The American Prospect. Most recently, Jay has been a media consultant and the director of the We the People Campaign, a project started with Jim Hightower and Katrina vanden Heuvel to fight the dominance of corporate influence in elections and policy. As a consultant to independent media brands, Jay has specialized in strategy for organizations with “hybrid” business models — ones that support journalistic missions through a combination of commercial and philanthropic revenues. Jay is the president of the board of the Public Intelligence Foundation and serves on the board of the First Amendment Coalition and the Communications Advisory Board of Human Rights Watch. Jay helped found The Media Consortium, an alliance of independent, progressive media working together to extend the reach and impact of their journalism. He has a B.A. in English from Duke University and a master’s in management from the Yale School of Management. Jay currently resides in San Francisco, California.
Matthew Butler, Secretary Treasurer
Matt Butler served as the former chief of staff for the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. He was the chief executive officer for Media Matters for America, a nonprofit research and information organization monitoring, analyzing, and correcting conservative misinformation in print, broadcast, cable, radio, and Internet media. Matt launched the Film Matters Project, a program assisting social change documentarians with access to cable news archives, and he participated in marketing documentary films, including one featured at Sundance Film Festival. He laid major groundwork for the “Mythopedia” project to catalog recurring misinformation in media, and a Spanish language monitoring team to research and correct misinformation in Hispanic Media. While still in law school, he participated in the senior-level development of 1996 National Coordinated Campaign Program that resulted in the re-election of Bill Clinton. Matt also served as the chief financial officer of Friends of John Kerry, and as the deputy campaign manager for the Kerry-Edwards presidential campaign. Matt currently resides in Washington, D.C.
David Drucker, Officer
David Drucker is a highly accomplished telecommunications entrepreneur. An attorney by background, he served from 1987 to 1993 as vice president and general counsel of EchoStar Satellite Corp., the company that created DISH Network. David founded and was chairman of WildBlue Communications, a telecommunications company that delivers high-speed internet service by satellite. David has served as chief executive officer of @Contact, LLC, an organization that held a license to construct, launch and operate a constellation of middle earth orbit Ka-band satellites. David has been involved in successfully building out numerous FCC licenses, including television and radio licenses in Colorado, Alaska, and Florida. He currently serves on the board of Colorado Public Television in Denver. David currently resides in Evergreen, Colorado.
Nabil Echchaibi, Officer
Nabil Echchaibi is associate professor and founding department chair of the College of Media, Communication and Information at the University of Colorado Boulder. He specializes in identity politics among young Muslims in the Arab world and in diaspora. His work on diasporic media, Islam and modernity has appeared in a number of scholarly books and research journals such as the Journal of Arab and Muslim Media Research, as well as the Guardian, USA Today, and The Huffington Post. Echchaibi is currently writing his book Unmosquing Islam: Muslim Media and Alternative Modernity, and his previous books include Voicing Diasporas: Ethnic Radio in Paris and Berlin Between Culture and Renewal and International Blogging: Identity, Politics and Networked Publics. Echchaibi recently directed a project funded by the Social Science Research Council, which compiled a cultural history of Muslims in the Mountain West region. A native of Morocco, Echchaibi earned his B.A. from Mohammed V University in Rabat, and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Indiana University-Bloomington. He currently resides in Louisville, Colorado.
Ashindi Maxton, Officer
Ashindi Maxton is an independent strategist with extensive work in philanthropy, democracy reform, racial justice and education. Currently a senior advisor at Women Donors Network, she previously served as the national director of political partnerships at SEIU International, and as the director of research and special projects at The Democracy Alliance. As the national policy director of the NAACP, she was responsible for coordinating the cross-cutting work of multiple departments including civic engagement, education, health, international affairs, economic empowerment, and criminal justice. Her diverse career path also includes positions as the national policy director for Teach for America, where she helped set the research and policy agenda of a national organization dedicated to eliminating the educational achievement gap; and as the principal of an arts charter school in Washington, D.C., implementing a curriculum focused on the visual arts, music, poetry, and architecture. She has been named to the “NAACP Power 40” list of most influential African-Americans under 40, and she has been listed three times on Washington’s Magazine’s “Young and the Guest List” of “40 and under geniuses, visionaries, crusaders and innovators shaping Washington’s future.” Ashindi currently resides in Washington, D.C.
Steve Phillips, Officer
Steve Phillips is a national political leader, civil rights lawyer, senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, the Founder of Democracy in Color, and author of the New York Times and Washington Post-bestselling Brown is the New White: How the Demographic Revolution Has Created a New American Majority. Steve is also the board chair and co-founder of PowerPAC.org. Steve devoted his early professional and political life to education. For four years he worked for the public interest law firm Public Advocates, Inc., as the coordinator of an education reform project that linked low-performing schools with business and local community groups. In 1992, at the age of 28, Steve successfully ran for a seat on the San Francisco Board of Education, and he became the youngest elected official in the history of San Francisco, going on to serve as president of the Board. Steve’s work with nonprofit organizations includes founding Justice Matters, an education reform and leadership development organization, and serving on the Board of Directors of Progressive Majority, the Democracy Alliance, and the American Conservatory Theater. Steve currently resides in San Francisco, California.
Alexandra Samuel, Officer
Alexandra Samuel is a technology researcher, writer and strategist, and the author of Work Smarter with Social Media: A Guide to Managing Evernote, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Your Email (Harvard Business Review Press, 2015). On her blog at the Harvard Business Review, she writes about how the social web is transforming our businesses, our communities and our personal lives. Her writing on technology issues has appeared in media outlets like the The Wall Street Journal, Macworld, Oprah.com, and The Atlantic.com, among others. As the founder and principal with Social Signal, one of the world’s first social media agencies, she shaped the online strategy for a wide range of online community projects, including Tyze, Change Everything, and NetSquared. Alexandra holds a B.A. from Oberlin College and a Ph.D. in Political Science from Harvard University, where her dissertation examined the phenomenon of hacktivism — politically motivated computer hacking — as a window on political participation. As the research director for Digital 4Sight’s Governance in the Digital Economy, she worked with Don Tapscott to create and guide an investigation into the future of government and democracy for an international consortium. Alexandra currently resides in Vancouver, Canada.
Reggie Shuford, Officer
Reggie Shuford became executive director of the ACLU of Pennsylvania in September 2011. Prior to joining the ACLU-PA, he served as the director of law and policy at the Equal Justice Society (EJS), a national racial justice strategy group. From 1995-2010, Reggie served as senior staff counsel in the national ACLU’s Racial Justice Program. During his tenure there, he was the ACLU’s chief litigator in challenges to racial profiling, leading national litigation efforts and consulting with ACLU state affiliates and others in cases of “driving while black or brown,” airport profiling, and profiling related to the war on terror. Reggie is a graduate of the University of North Carolina’s School of Law in Chapel Hill, where he was his graduating class president. In 2009, he received the Law School’s Distinguished Alumnus Award. Reggie is a former Harvard Law School Wasserstein Public Interest Fellow and received the 2014 Minority Business Leader Award from the Philadelphia Business Journal and the 2014 Humanitarian of the Year Award from the William Way LGBT Community Center. In 2015, Reggie was selected as a CBSPhilly GameChanger, named Diverse Attorney of the Year by the Legal Intelligencer, and received the Philadelphia Business Journal’s LGBT Business Advocate Award. He is the recipient of the 2016 Living Legal Legend Award from Penn State Law’s Black Law Students Association and the 2016 David M. Rosenblum GLBT Public Policy Award from the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s GLBT Rights Committee. Reggie was named one of Philadelphia’s Most Influential African Americans of 2016 by the Philadelphia Tribune. Reggie currently resides in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Jess Torres, Officer
Jess Torres is a communications strategist and writer who believes in building political power for marginalized communities. She currently serves as press secretary, campaigns at the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW), which is the largest private retail union representing 1.3 million members in the United States and Canada. Jess previously served as director of communications for Latino Victory Project, and also sits on the Board of Directors for “Pay Our Interns.” She previously served as assistant press secretary for the 2016 Democratic National Convention Committee, where she oversaw and managed the largest Hispanic-media team in Democratic Convention history. Prior to that, she was a researcher for the Hispanic Media Project at Media Matters for America and legal analyst at the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. Jess also previously served on the board of Students Active For Ending Rape (SAFER) — a national campus sexual violence prevention organization — where she coordinated teach-in workshops to mobilize student activists and their allies to fight for more inclusive policy practices. Jess received a B.A. from Williams College in history with a concentration in Africana studies, and is a proud PREP9 alumna. Jess currently resides in Washington, D.C.