Raven Brooks (@ravenb / Facebook) is the executive director of Netroots Foundation and Netroots Nation. Raven was initially drawn into politics during Howard Dean’s presidential campaign and quickly got involved in grassroots politics, including the first Yearly Kos. He’s led the growth of Netroots Nation from a volunteer-run effort to the country’s premier progressive gathering, added an international component and expanded the programming to include infrastructure and capacity-building programs. He lives in Oakland and is an avid runner, cyclist, hiker and outdoor enthusiast.
Carolyn Dulchinos is the team’s development associate. Previously she was an attorney in Washington, D.C., with a practice focused on campaign finance and government ethics. In the 1990s, she took a job as legislative representative for the Boulder County Commissioners. She’s now a community activist involved in land use and environmental issues, as well as immigration policy. In her spare time, Carolyn volunteers in the Humane Society of Boulder Valley vet clinic and drives her two teenagers various places.
Melissa Foley (@melfoley) is the new media program director for Netroots Foundation. Prior to joining the team, she worked as a senior member of the online communications team at Al Gore’s Alliance for Climate Protection and as director of marketing and operations for a web-based social enterprise. Melissa holds a master’s from Pepperdine University and a bachelor’s from UC San Diego.
Karen Thomas Kolber (@karenkolber) is the development director for Netroots Nation. With two decades of fundraising experience, Kolber began her career in the health and human services arena, working at one of the largest Planned Parenthood affiliates in the country before founding the consulting firm FFD. She is recognized as an expert in her field, authoring the Democratic GAIN Fundraising Manual and teaching for the Brown-Tully Institute, EMILY’s List, National Women’s Political Caucus and the Sorenson Institute for Political Leadership at the University of Virginia. Residing in Virginia Beach with her Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, Lucy and Molly, she’s passionate about animal rescue and veterinary medicine.
Mary Rickles (@merickles) is the team’s communications director. She has a unique background in both traditional and new media, having worked as a reporter and with agencies, non-profits and corporate companies on projects ranging from brand development to community outreach. She previously was communications director for Democracy for America, where she still serves as a national trainer. Mary is on the board of directors for Democratic GAIN and was named one of New Leaders Council’s Top 40 Under 40 Emerging Leaders in 2009. She grew up in Alabama and now lives in San Francisco, where she enjoys singing and cheering on the Giants.
Tanya Tarr (@nerdette) is a senior mentor with New Media Mentors, supporting change for organizations so that they can change the world. She has worked in electoral and union campaigns for 15 years, most recently as Director of Legislative and Political Mobilization for the Texas American Federation of Teachers. Tanya is a graduate of Carnegie Mellon University and the Heinz Graduate School of Public Policy and Management, with a master of science in performance measurement. Tanya lives in Austin, Texas with her husband, Mykle, and their much beloved dog and rescue cat.
Eric Thut (@ericthut) is the team’s Operations Director. He been volunteering for Netroots Nation since that first year in Vegas, doing his best to help keep things running smoothly during the convention. Eric got involved with politics during Dean’s presidential run and found himself coordinating the volunteer efforts in Kansas City, where he currently resides with his wife and two kids.
Elon James White (@elonjames) is Netroots Nation’s media director and CEO of TWiB! Media, home of the award winning This Week in Blackness. Elon is the editor in chief of VALID and hosts the critically acclaimed TWiB Prime on Blackness.TV. His political analysis and social commentary has been featured on MSNBC’s Melissa Harris Perry, Up With Chris, The Rachel Maddow Show, Colorlines, Huffington Post and The Root. He was also featured in Ebony Magazine’s “What’s Next” in 2014.