June 11, 2012
We’re a scrappy little outfit working to open government.
We’ll bring the sledgehammers.
Darrell is a lifelong technophile with a passion for open, accountable government. First elected to Congress in 2000, he led the successful opposition to the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) in the U.S. House of Representatives. Issa launched OpenGov in March 2011 to expand development of free software solutions like Madison that help citizens access government, empowering them to collaborate with elected officials and each other to deliver better policy.
Before serving the people of California’s 49th Congressional district as Chairman of the House Oversight and Government Committee, Issa founded Directed Electronics Incorporated and served as Chairman of the Consumer Electronics Association. Issa received the 1994 Entrepreneur of the Year Award from Inc. Magazine, Ernst & Young and the San Diego Union-Tribune. Tweet him @DarrellIssa.
Abhi Nemani is a writer, speaker, organizer, and technologist. For the past four years, he helped build the national non-profit, Code for America, atechnology organization dedicated to reinventing government for the 21st century. Abhi led CfA’s product strategy as its teams tackled local government challenges ranging from transparency and business licensing to food stamps and the criminal justice system. He also led the organization’s efforts to scale through building multiple new programs: a first-of-its-kind civic startup accelerator, an international volunteer corps, and a collaborative network for hundreds of government innovators. Abhi’s work at CfA has been featured in the New York Times, Government Technology, and Forbes, and he has been featured as a speaker at SxSW, the World Bank, and various universities and conferences around the world.
Prior to CfA, Abhi worked for Google, developing social engagement strategies, the Rose Institute of State and Local Government, managing multiple local government transparency research teams, and the Center for American Progress, focusing on connecting a national network of public-minded students.
Abhi is a Truman National Security Partner, a member of the Board of Advisors of Significance Labs, and a member of the World Economic Forum’s Urban Development Initiative. He graduated magna cum laude from Claremont McKenna College with a honors degree in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE), and studied political philosophy and rhetoric as the University of Oxford.
LEILI SLUTZ, Operations Architect Leili joined the OpenGov team to be a part of the digital democratic revolution. She has a background in nonprofit communications and development with a variety of organizations around DC and Virginia.Leili spends her free time running, reading, yoga-ing, and planning elaborate trips abroad. Tweet her @LeiliSlutz or drop her a line at Leili@opengovfoundation.org.
CHRIS BIRK Lead Developer and Board Member
Chris is a geek at heart, graduating from Purdue University with a degree in Computer Science. He previously worked for a series of startup web development companies before diving into Madison with The OpenGov Foundation. He was part of the inSourceCode team that first built Madison and KeepTheWebOpen.com, while bringing an innovation mindset to how the U.S. Congress uses technology. He has a fancy for working with open source projects and is constantly staying up to date on new toys and tools.Chris is originally from Carmel, Indiana and in his spare time can be found hooping on the hardcourt, cheering on his Indianapolis Colts, or relaxing to some Dave Matthews Band. Tweet him @cmbirk or drop him a line at Chris@OpenGovFoundation.org or Ninjas@OpenGovFoundation.org.
JOE TRIPPI Board of Advisors
Founder and President of Trippi & Associates, and heralded on the cover of The New Republic as the man who “reinvented campaigning”, Joe Trippi is widely recognized as one of America’s most influential political strategists. During his 34-year career, Trippi has run and consulted on numerous presidential, Senatorial, congressional, mayoral and gubernatorial races. Most recently, Trippi was a senior strategist and media consultant in Jerry Brown’s successful run for California Governor.
Trippi is known for his innovation in the world of political strategy. In 2004, as the National Campaign Manager for Howard Dean’s presidential campaign, he pioneered the use of online technology to organize what became the largest grassroots movement in presidential politics. Trippi and his team also created the empowerment messaging and the online community tools that President Barack Obama used in his campaigns, and which has now become the basis for movement politics all around the world. He also has an extensive international resume, serving as advisor to successful campaigns for Prime Minister in Greece, Great Britain, and Italy.
Trippi is the author of The Revolution Will Not Be Televised: Democracy, the Internet and the Overthrow of Everything, the story of how his revolutionary use of the Internet combined with an impassioned, contagious desire to overturn politics-as-usual grew into a national grassroots movement – and changed the face of American politics forever.
Director of the Shuttleworth Foundation, Karien is an advocate for openness and supporter of social entrepreneurs. She has played various roles within the Foundation, facing new challenges and learning every step of the way. She now focusses on the Fellowship Program – engaging with issues of openness and social change, identifying potential investments and working closely with Fellows towards realizing their vision.
She is a native of the Eastern Cape, South Africa, and the smell of rain after a dry spell still makes her think of home. She believes elephants have noble hearts and is passionate about their protection and conservation. It is rare for a meme to pass her by; she always knows what’s up in the collective mind of the Internet.
Karien studied business and economics at the business schools of the University of Stellenbosch and University of Cape Town.
MAGGIE McKINLEY Board of Advisors
Maggie McKinley is Co-Principal Investigator of the “Language of Lobbying” Project at the University of Chicago. She received her JD from Stanford Law School and her BA in linguistic anthropology from UCLA. Previously, she served as Manager of Research at the UCLA Ethnography of Autism Project, Principal Policy Producer at the Sloan Center on the Everyday Lives of Families, and practiced civil litigation on behalf of unions and labor federations at Bredhoff & Kaiser in Washington, DC. Following law school, she clerked for the Northern District of California and the Ninth Circuit. Her work has been published in the Stanford Law Review and was awarded the Steven M. Block Civil Liberties Award for excellence in writing in the area of personal freedom. In August of 2014, Maggie will begin her tenure at Harvard Law School as a Climenko Fellow and Lecturer on Law. Click here for more on Maggie. Tweet her @MaggieMcKinley.
JEN YU Board of Advisors
As a multifaceted creative with roots in film, animation, illustration, product and interactive design, Jen Yu has led wildly successful design and experience teams in the last decade. These places include Disney, Adobe, Slide (acquired by Google), Jawbone, and Frog Design, to name a few. She is also deeply involved with social entrepreneurs, having worked with TEDActive in 2011 on the Social Networks Project Leadership team, served on the board of the International Game Developers Association in Asia, and worked as a design mentor for Startup Weekend.
She led the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s (DARPA) experience design team in building Plan X, the U.S. Defense Department’s foundational cyberwarfare program. Jen is currently the Chief Creative Officer of a Y Combinator startup in San Francisco. If you buy her a cookie, she will gladly take it.