Staff and Board
Michael has 25 years' experience in Bay Area politics. He started managing political campaigns with the California League of Conservation Voters, before becoming the Executive Director of the San Francisco Democratic Party and most recently the Senior Chapter Director at the Sierra Club Bay Chapter. Throughout his career Michael has led or worked on several dozens of election campaigns, dispatched thousands of volunteers, and made too many phone calls to count.
Campaign Director and Spokesperson
Ben graduated from Boston University in 2006 and began his organizing career right away by working to unionize healthcare workers in Massachusetts. Since then he has fundraised for various non-profit organizations, directed canvass operations and done electoral field organizing. Prior to working with Evolve Ben ran a telephone outreach project for the San Francisco Democratic Party and Labor Council during the fall 2010 election cycle. Aside from being a political junkie Ben enjoys hiking and wildlife photography.
Ian graduated from San Francisco State University in 2012 where he played baseball and received his degree in Sociology. Having developed a passion for social & economic justice, Ian decided to join Evolve to fight for public education and tax fairness. Ian has always been interested in national politics and now spends most of his free time engaged in local politics. He is currently the Treasurer of the Latin@ Young Democrats of San Francisco. Outside of politics, Ian enjoys watching sports and good television series as well as playing adult league softball.
Vanessa is a B.A. in Philosophy and Politics graduate of the University of California, Santa Cruz. While at UCSC she immersed herself in campus organizing, got involved with student government and became the Vice-President of membership of the UCSC College Democrats. Her work for education justice drives her efforts locally where she decided to join Evolve in summer 2015 as an intern building coalitions across the UC to increase funding for higher education. This past year she served as the National Queer Students of Color Caucus Chair (NQSoC), sitting on the Board of Directors for the United States Student Association (USSA). Aside from being a political and Aaron Sorkin TV series junkie; Vanessa enjoys reading books, eating basic food, and watching local San Francisco Giants baseball.
Daniel is a South African high school teacher and graduate of the University of San Francisco's MA program in Educational Organization and Leadership. Having learned first hand just how critical an investment in public education is, he is passionate about being an advocate for children both within the classroom and beyond it in public life. In his spare time Daniel enjoys soccer, running, good wine, and anything written by Kurt Vonnegut.
Baleigh is going into her junior year at Pomona College in Claremont, CA where she is earning her BA in Philosophy with a minor in Spanish. At Pomona, she is a liaison to the Philosophy department as well as being a student-athlete on the Pomona-Pitzer Softball team. Originally from Reno, NV, Baleigh grew up in the public education system. With both of her parents working in public education, her father being a teacher and her mother a registrar at a local high school, public education has always been an issue she has felt strongly about. She joined Evolve to become more politically active and do her part in the fight for public education. In her free time, Baleigh enjoys writing, traveling, reading, and, most of all, watching New York Yankees Baseball.
Swetha is going into her third year at San Francisco State University, where she is double majoring in Political Science and Women & Gender Studies. Prior to Evolve, she was an intern at NARAL Pro-Choice California, which gave her a taste of what grassroots organizing can do. She grew up in a household where education was the priority and this fuels her passion and commitment to public education. In her spare time, she enjoys tea and reading books.
Board of Directors
Anna is a graduate of the Greencorps Field School for Environmental Organizing. She has led environmental and public interest campaigns across the country. After settling in the Bay Area Anna managed the Sierra Club’s local environmental campaigns, winning campaigns to protect hillsides in Livermore and creating solar energy programs in San Francisco. Anna is currently a Senior Organizer with Greenpeace where she supports environmental campaigns across the globe.
Laura launched her career as a State Organizer for NARAL and has been active in public life ever since. Laura has led environmental campaigns as the Organizing Manger for the Bay Chapter Sierra Club, designed statewide electoral and media strategy with MSHC Partners, and worked on many San Francisco political campaigns. She is currently the Executive Director of the California Music and Culture Association and is active in San Francisco politics.
Emil began his involvement in social activism as an undergraduate student at the University of California at Santa Barbara and went on to volunteer on numerous anti-war and fair-pay/workers’ rights campaigns. As lead organizer for Evolve's school board and city council resolution campaign, he was instrumental in crafting effective messaging and working with local elected officials to pass over 110 resolutions statewide in support of Prop.13 reform. He currently works on providing technology skills-training opportunities for the long-term unemployed at Jewish Vocational Service in San Francisco. He is also a composer. More about him and his music may be found at emilmargolis.com
Sam started his career in fundraising at Evolve, organizing for better public education in California. Sam has interned with Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, and the International Rescue Committee. He is a Senior Fellow at Humanity In Action, a cross-disciplinary program that links young social-justice advocates interested in minority issues. In 2014, Sam participated as a Witness at the First Stewards Symposium in Washington D.C., a conference that brings together Native groups from across the country to examine the effects of climate change on indigenous communities and coalesce thought on mitigating negative impacts.
Phil is a former organizer with the California League of Conservation Voters, with grassroots campaign experience in local, state, and national candidate races and initiatives. In 2014, he built a coalition that successfully lobbied the Alameda Board of Education to pass Evolve’s Prop. 13 reform resolution. He is also the parent of a grade-schooler in the Alameda School District.