Our Staff

Jana Morgan, Director

Jana Morgan is the director of the Declaration for American Democracy, a coalition of over 180 groups from the labor, racial justice, faith, women’s rights, environmental, good government, and many other important communities, on a mission to take back our democracy and restore power to the people. 

More About Jana

She previously served as the Director of Advocacy and Campaigns at the International Corporate Accountability Roundtable, where she led the organization’s efforts to combat corporate capture and launched the Protect the Protest coalition. Before that, she was the Director of Publish What You Pay – United States where she led the coalition’s efforts to bring transparency and accountability to the oil, gas, and mining sector, and now serves on the organization’s steering committee. Jana also worked at Global Witness, advocating to break the link between natural resources, corruption and conflict, and conducting in country field research on Afghanistan’s extractive sector, conflict minerals exploitation in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, and the development of governance systems for Uganda’s emerging oil sector.

She previously served as the representative for North America and Europe both as a member of the board for the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative and the Publish What You Pay Global Council.

Jana holds an MA in International Relations from the Maxwell School of Syracuse University and a Certificate of Advanced Study in Conflict Resolution. She received her BA in Government from St. Lawrence University.

Spencer Olson, Communications Director

Spencer Olson is the communications director for the Declaration for American Democracy. Spencer has chaired the coalition’s communications working group for the last two and a half years.

More About Spencer

He previously served as the associate director for democracy at ReThink Media, leading the organization’s money in politics and judicial independence projects. Before that, he worked at Fuse Washington directing Washington state’s Communications Hub, a capacity building communications shop. Through those experiences, Spencer led the communications programs for multiple coalitions, including Honest Elections Seattle and the Washington Voting Justice Coalition, that successfully enacted small donor financing programs, automatic voter registration, and other transformative democracy reforms.

Christine Wood, Field Coordinator

Christine Wood serves as the Field Coordinator for the Declaration for American Democracy. In addition to this role, she works for Public Citizen on their Democracy Is For People Campaign. 

More About Christine

Christine’s background is in electoral politics and issue-based advocacy. Prior to her position with Public Citizen, Christine served as the Field Director for a competitive Congressional campaign, and did field work in the 2016 electoral cycle.

Christine got her start in issue-based advocacy working on the Climate Reality Projects’ 100% Renewable campaigns, where she led organizing efforts on several college campuses.

Through those experiences, Christine developed a passion for inspiring everyday people to take action, which continues to drive her work on securing sweeping democracy reform.

Aswar Rahman, Digital Content Creator

Aswar Rahman leads digital content creation for the Declaration for American Democracy. Aswar’s background is in electoral politics.

More About Aswar

He served as Digital Content Director for Senator Amy Klobuchar’s 2020 Presidential Campaign, and prior to that served as Digital Director for Representative Dean Phillips’ first Congressional run.

Aswar’s expertise is in digital strategy, graphic design and video production — he’s looking forward to be an asset to the over 150 members of the DFAD coalition.

Elias Hakim, Campaign Associate

Elias Hakim is the campaign associate for the Declaration for American Democracy. Before joining DFAD, he was most recently the assistant for field and member services at The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights.

More About Elias

Elias graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a BA in Government & Politics in 2019. As a student, he engaged as an organizer on his campus while holding internships on electoral campaigns, in the Office of the Governor, and in the US House of Representatives. 

Elias is looking forward to utilizing his skills and his passion for democracy to support the work of the DFAD coalition. 

Cecilia Bernard, Field Organizer

Cecilia Bernard is an organizer for the Declaration for American Democracy Coalition. Cecilia’s expertise is in electoral organizing and coalition building.

More About Cecilia

Most recently, Cecilia worked with Planned Parenthood Advocates of Iowa to gain momentum and build power in the Iowa legislature in order to protect and expand reproductive rights statewide.

She got her start as a campus organizer on Senator Elizabeth Warren’s Presidential Campaign in Des Moines, IA where she first developed her love of organizing.

Cecilia is looking forward to continuing to expand the movement for anti-corruption and restore power to the people through this role.

Sav Gribbins, Field Organizer

Sav is an experienced organizer with more than 4 years of experience. Prior to her career in politics she was a reporter and producer for National Public Radio. 

More About Sav

She has worked for campaigns in the state of Florida since 2016 when she got started as a field staffer for Hillary Clinton. She recently helped launch a Florida Green New Deal.

Outside work she enjoys volunteering with a local mutual aid organization, packing and delivering groceries to elderly, low income, or disabled households.

Shivani Desai, Natl. Distributed Organizer

Shivani Desai (she/her/hers) is a National Distributed Organizer for the Declaration for American Democracy. She’s excited to be a part of the effort that will get corporate money out of politics & make it easier to elect more truly representative candidates who will fight for needed changes like Medicare for All, global vaccine access, (and MUCH more).

More About Shivani
Before this role, Shivani organized with Mutual Aid Hub–a resource that makes it easier for people to find and plug into mutual aid efforts across the country, organized for Senator Warren’s campaign, and worked on feminist issues including abortion access, Title IX, and Title X at the Feminist Majority. She is currently aiding in a grassroots effort to free Ramy Shaath, a human rights defender and BDS champion, imprisoned for his activism. 
 
Shivani is from Cincinnati, OH and lives in DC. She loves The Circle, platform shoes, growing (successfully!) fresh mint & green chilis, and learning hair dyeing techniques.

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What does the For the People Act (S. 1/H.R. 1) do?

The For the People Act is a sweeping package to realize the promise of our democracy, get big money out of politics, ensure our freedom to vote, and guarantee that congressional districts are drawn to give fair representation for all.

Together we can realize a democracy that represents, reflects, and responds to all of us.

Gets big money out of politics.

The For the People Act (H.R. 1):

  • counters the Citizens United decision
  • establishes a voluntary small donor public financing system for House races
  • enacts the DISCLOSE Act
  • reveals who's funding dark money groups
  • strengthens the prohibition on campaign spending by foreign nationals
  • enacts the Honest Ads Act
  • reveals who's buying online political ads
  • enacts the Stand By Every Ad Act
  • requires political ad buyers to reveal their top donors and chief officials
  • mandates greater transparency from tax-exempt organizations
  • requires publicly traded companies to consult with shareholders before spending on politics
  • leads to disclosure of contributions by government contractors
  • holds presidential inaugural committees accountable
  • pilots a voucher program, so voters can contribute to candidates of their choice
  • establishes a small donor matching system for Congressional elections
  • reforms the presidential public financing program
  • empowers more people to run by allowing federal candidates who are not incumbents to use part of their campaign funds for childcare and certain other expenses
  • encourages small dollar donations to political party committees
  • overhauls the FEC
  • cracks down on Super PAC-Candidate coordination
  • requires disposal of unused campaign funds
Makes voting simpler, safer, and fairer.

The For the People Act (H.R. 1):

  • commits to restore and update the full protections of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (VRA) — the most effective civil rights legislation in the history of the United States
  • commits to protect and promote Native American voting rights
  • ensures access to voting for individuals with disabilities
  • supports DC statehood
  • supports federal voting rights for Americans living in US territories
  • enacts the Redistricting Reform Act of 2019
  • bans partisan and racial gerrymandering
  • adopts independent redistricting commissions
  • combats cyberattacks, election hacking, and disinformation campaigns
  • promotes online voter registration in federal elections nationwide
  • requires automatic voter registration for federal elections nationwide
  • allows same day registration for federal elections nationwide
  • prevents voter roll purges
  • makes registration deadlines line up with public holidays
  • requires USPS to remind movers to update their voter registration
  • creates grants to boost youth involvement in election activities
  • provide additional state funding to update registration processes
  • prohibits interference with voter registration
  • standardizes voter registrations across states
  • expands pre-registration for future voters currently 16 or older
  • prohibits voter caging
  • enacts the Deceptive Practices and Voter Intimidation Prevention Act
  • restores federal voting rights to those disenfranchised by a prior criminal conviction
  • adopt paper ballots
  • strengthen provisional balloting
  • create a nationwide standard for early voting
  • expand opportunities to vote by mail
  • protect voting rights for absent military and overseas voters
  • provides grants for more poll workers
  • enhances enforcement of existing standards
  • prevents conflicts of interest with chief state election officials
  • allows public universities to become voter registration agencies
  • lets students vote where they attend school
  • requires a weeks' notice to change polling places
  • allows a sworn statement option for voter ID requirements
  • makes absentee ballots postage-free
  • helps states process absentee ballots
  • strengthens voter information support
  • standardizes polling place hours of operation
  • improves the Election Assistance Commission
  • funds election security upgrades
  • increases communication about threats to state election systems
Holds public officials accountable.

The For the People Act (H.R. 1):

  • requires sitting presidents, vice presidents, and major-party candidates for those offices to disclose their tax returns
  • requires a code of ethics for the United States Supreme Court
  • updates and enforces the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA)
  • increases federal lobbying disclosure requirements
  • requires presidential appointees to recuse themselves from government matters to which the president or their spouse is a party
  • ensures easy public access to lobbying information
  • requires the president and vice president to divest from any personal financial holdings that could pose a conflict of interest with their official duties
  • demands transparency for White House ethics waivers
  • strengthen ethics enforcement in the executive branch
  • requires more disclosure of political donations and fundraising by cabinet members and other senior appointees
  • makes presidents-elect adopt and enforce ethics rules for their transition teams
  • requires all senior executive branch appointees to take an ethics pledge
  • restricts travel on private aircraft by cabinet members and other senior appointees
  • makes Members of Congress pay any awards or settlements in connection to claims of workplace harassment
  • prohibits House members from serving on the boards of for-profit companies
  • bars Members of Congress and staff from trying to make laws to make themselves rich
  • requires candidates to disclose if they get donations from registered lobbyists
  • creates a searchable, public online portal for all reports to Congress
  • requires reporting of outside compensation for congressional staff

What is the Declaration for American Democracy?

A Coalition of 200+ Member Organizations

The Declaration for American Democracy is an anti-oppression coalition working together to make the promise of democracy real for all of us.

We believe our democratic systems, institutions, and leaders must reflect, represent, and respect the diverse, multicultural nation that we are and have always been. For democracy to work for all of us, it must include all of us and address the deep systemic, institutional challenges that continue to block meaningful progress to this day. As America’s diversity continues to grow, so must our democracy.

Our Mission

Today our democracy faces crises on multiple fronts -- compounded by a deeply problematic history that has held us back from achieving an inclusive and equitable multiracial  nation since our founding. Powerful corporations and wealthy special interests use their money and influence to shape public policy priorities. Extremist politicians are putting up deliberate barriers to block access to the ballot box and silence the voices of Black, Brown, Indigenous, Latinx, AAPI, low-income, LGBTQIA, disability, and other marginalized communities. State legislatures are manipulating Congressional maps to allow politicians to pick their voters and hoard power for their political parties. And our government has failed to respond after four years of a corrupt administration and Supreme Court decisions gutting voting rights protections and anti-corruption laws.

Working together, we are committed to passing national standards, including the For the People Act, the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, and DC Statehood, to transform our political system and move our country closer to realizing the true promise of democracy. However, we will not be satisfied with any single reform and will continue to press for the structural changes necessary to rebalance power for the people and undo the historic harms that have barred communities that have been marginalized and denied political power since the founding of the United States.

We believe people of color, young people, people with disabilities, language minorities, and other historically disenfranchised communities should have equal access to the ballot and be equitably represented in government. We believe everyday people should have a stronger voice in elections than wealthy donors and special interests. And we believe our government should be transparent and accountable to the people.

Together we must ensure the freedom to vote is a fundamental American right and that the people -- regardless of our color, our background, or our zip code - hold the power, not the wealthy and corporations.

Our Vision

Therefore, we, the Declaration for American Democracy, are committed to working together to achieve this vision and model our values in how we work together. As a coalition, we will invest in each other and treat each other with respect. We will acknowledge and learn from our past, including the legacy of racism and white supremacy in our movement and democratic institutions. In decision making we will center Black, Brown, Indigenous, Latinx, AAPI, LGBTQIA, people with disabilities, language minorities, as well as other impacted communities. And we will invest in each other through professional development, collaborative grantmaking, and shared projects.

Our 200+ Member Organizations

DFAD Members

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