NDN Blog

SImon Rosenberg on Fox News Discussing Health Care Reform

On May 17th, Simon Rosenberg joined political contributor to the Weekly Standard Steve Hayes to discuss insurance coverage under the health care reform bill. Check out the clip below!

NDN Team Welcomes Our Summer Intern Class!

NDN is excited to announce it's 2010 Summer Intern Class. So excited, in fact, that we're counting down the days until these magnificent seven arrive! 

Emily Byl will join Haylie on the Membership and Development Team. Emily deferred the first semester of her Freshman year of college to work on the Obama campaign in Michigan, where she worked as a field organizer in Northern Kent County. Later during the campaign, she worked in three counties in Indiana. Emily is a rising Junior at the University of Michigan. She is active in the student government on campus and is currently Co-chair of the LGBT Commission. Additionally, Emily is the music director of a co-ed a capella group on campus. Emily is looking forward to joining the NDN Team for the summer!

Jordan Fraade will help Simon, Alicia and the rest of the staff as the Writing and Research Intern. Jordan graduated from Columbia University this past May with a B.A. in history and a minor in Spanish. Originally from Connecticut, he has spent the last four years happily living in New York and is looking forward to spending time in D.C. for the summer and then whatever city his travels take him to next. Major areas of interest in politics include how various methods of communication influence political discourse and ideas, education policy, and Latin American affairs. He spent spring 2009 studying abroad in Madrid and is fluent in Spanish, and past D.C. experience consists of interning in Senator Chris Dodd's office in summer 2008. Hobbies include reading (esp. modernist novels and Russian lit), music of all shapes and sizes, eating his way through New York, dead-tree journalism, Indian food, the NYT crossword puzzle, and cheering on the NDN softball team after he inevitably strikes out.

Andrew Mulherkar will assist Jake and the rest of the Green Project Team. Andrew is a rising 5th-year student in the dual degree program between Tufts University and New England Conservatory. At Tufts, he is a major in International Relations, with a focus in Environmental Economics. His interest in environmental policy grew out of his work with organizations including Climate Solutions and the Washington Environmental Council, both based in his hometown of Seattle. Mulherkar has continued to develop an understanding of environmental and energy-related issues through his involvement with Tufts Recycles and the Tufts Energy Forum. At the same time, he has actively pursued his passion of playing jazz saxophone, through private study with Miguel Zenon and Jerry Bergonzi, among others. His other interests include a wide range of outdoor activities, travel, and cooking. He is eager to join the NDN team this summer.

Jeff Ochfeld will work with Amanda on NDN's Membership Program. Jeff, a rising sophmore at the University of Texas at Austin, was raised in Potomac, Maryland and is excited to work in Washington, D.C. to reacquaint himself with our nation's capital. In his free time he like to play sports, surf the web, and keep in touch with current events. Jeff also enjoys volunteering and learning from individuals with a variety of backgrounds. Jeff plans to backpack through Europe in the next few years so that he can become immersed in the rich culture found throughout the continent.

Samhir Vasdev will help out Sam on the Global Mobile Project. Samhir is a junior studying political science and African studies at Georgetown University. He is interested in studying the emergence of new media and technologies as important political players in the global landscape, as well as the importance of harnessing their power in responsible public policy. Outside the classroom, Samhir is a passionate soccer fan who loses his voice on a weekly basis watching his team play on TV. Other random interests include policy and corruption in the underdeveloped world, snowboarding, and graphic/web design. After graduating from Georgetown, Samhir hopes to work in East Africa for a while before selling his soul to attend law school.

Ana Maria Vidal joins us as the intern for the Hispanic Project. Ana Maria is delighted to be joining the NDN Hispanic Programs Team this summer. Right after graduating from Tufts University in 2007, she served as a Deputy Advisor to the Governor of Puerto Rico in the Office of Economic Development working mostly on projects of science, technology and education. Her exposure to higher education partnerships in Mexico with the Library of Congress as well as her experience as a citizenship teacher for Salvadorian Refugees in Massachusetts have led her to be interested in education policy issues regarding Hispanic populations both in the US and abroad. She is currently pursuing to a master's degree in Government at Johns Hopkins University and hopes to finish her thesis about Puerto Rican political culture and the welfare state this summer too!

Laura White will work with Jake on NDN's Globalization Project. Laura White is an enthusiastic changemaker who is deeply rooted in public service. After working extensively with the low-income children population in Atlanta, Laura developed an interest for poverty issues and started a nonprofit that provides free swimming lessons for low-income children. Laura now attends Tulane University in New Orleans, LA and continues to work with the nonprofit she founded, Wild and Water Swimming. She is also studying Political Economy, Economics, Education, and Urban Studies and works extensively with the Roosevelt Institute and the Ashoka U Changemaker Campus Program. Laura will be serving as President of the Tulane Roosevelt Institute in the fall, as well as continuing to serve as Project Manager of the Tulane Ashoka U Program.

Congratulations to NDN's 2010 Summer Intern Class!

Moving On... Thanks for a Great Year, NDN!

After a almost a full year as Simon's assistant, I'm sad to announce that Friday, May 21st will be my last day at NDN (7 days--exactly--shy of one year). But it's a bittersweet goodbye because I'm moving on to the front-lines of a cause I care deeply about and to join another organization I admire very much. On May 25th, I'll become a member of the team at the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), where I'll assist the General and Legislative Counsels' Offices in the ongoing fight for LGBT equality.

But I can't leave without saying a heartfelt thank you to the entire NDN Team and extended family for making the last year so memorable and meaningful!

NDN has accomplished a lot over the last year but its work is far from finished. And as long as there's work yet to be done, Simon will need someone to help him do it. So this is where I casually mention that we're eager to find Simon's next assistant and if you or any of your friends are interested in a great job, check out the job description. Feel free to email me with questions (or resumes)!

NDN Welcomes Amanda, Dan and Hilary to the Team!

NDN is pleased to announce the newest members of our growing team:

Amanda Agosti, DC Membership Coordinator
A native of Dearborn, Michigan, Amanda brings broad experience to NDN as our new DC Membership Coordinator and comes to us from Senator Dick Durbin's Leadership office where she served as Deputy Scheduler. Prior to working for Senator Durbin, Amanda worked for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee where she focused on fundraising in the Mid-Atlantic region.

Dan Carol, Senior Fellow, Innovation and Clean Technology
Senior Fellow Dan Carol serves as a strategic adviser to NDN’s Electricity 2.0 and 21st Century Economy projects, focusing on bottom-up and regional innovation. Most recently, Carol served as the Content & Issues Director for the Obama for President Campaign, where he guided the launches of Obama's NewEnergyforAmerica.com plan and Clean Tech and Green Business Leaders for Obama (CT40).

A long-time catalyst and evangelist for building new approaches for a Green New Deal, Carol spearheaded the creation of The Apollo Alliance (www.apolloalliance.org), an early, post 9/11 effort to promote a "moon mission" national commitment to energy independence and unite Americans of all political stripes in a common purpose. Before that, Carol was an environmental and energy budget analyst at the Congressional Budget Office, a Presidential Management Fellow, and a trend consultant for the Congressional Institute for the Future. Carol earlier served as Research Director for the Democratic National Committee during the 1992 presidential cycle, where he directed staff work on the Party's national platform and worked in Little Rock on the Clinton-Gore debate team.

A member of the Clinton Global Initiative and a co-founder of the Clean Economy Network, Carol currently teaches public policy at the University of Oregon. A founding contributor to the Huffington Post, his writings and commentary have been featured in The Wall Street Journal, C-Span, CNN and The Boston Review.

Hilary Ashford-Ng, Events Director
With multiple years of meeting and event planning experience, Hilary Ashford-Ng has extensive knowledge in all stages of event development and execution. Her experience ranges from small meetings, to political fundraisers, to national conference tours with thousands of attendees. Hilary is an experienced hotel liaison with an acute attention to logistical details. Additionally, she has experience in all aspects of government contracting from budget creation and oversight, to contract negotiations, to federal contract regulation compliance. In addition to overseeing the progress of each event project, she is responsible for securing high-level speakers. Hilary graduated cum laude from the University of California at Santa Cruz, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Politics.

Welcome Amanda, Dan and Hilary!

Revisiting the Senate Vote on CIR in '06

In 2006, the US Senate voted 62-36 to pass S.2611: Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2006. Of the 62 Senators who voted to pass CIR, 22 were Republicans:

Bennett (R-UT)*
Brownback (R-KS)*
Chafee (R-RI)
Coleman (R-MN)
Collins (R-ME)*
Craig (R-ID)
DeWine (R-OH)
Domenici (R-NM)
Frist (R-TN)
Graham (R-SC)*
Gregg (R-NH)*
Hagel (R-NE)
Lugar (R-IN)*
Martinez (R-FL)
McCain (R-AZ)*
McConnell (R-KY)*
Murkowski (R-AK)*
Smith (R-OR)
Snowe (R-ME)*
Specter (R-PA)*
Stevens (R-AK)
Voinovich (R-OH)*
Warner (R-VA)

Of those 22 Senators, 12 are still in office today, and 11 are still Republicans (think Specter). But the count is different this time around. Four years later, not a single one of these Republicans support CIR.

9500 Liberty Heads to Arizona!

In Tempe, Arizona this Friday, April 30th, Harkins Theaters will host the theatrical premiere of the award-winning documentary 9500 Liberty. The film tells the story of a northern Virginian community's struggle to manage its changing population in a climate of fear and racial tension, as an extremist community group lobbied Prince William County's Board of Supervisors to pass a resolution that would give local law enforcement the authority to check proof of citizenship for all whom they had "probable cause" to suspect were undocumented.

The film captures the devastating social and economic effects the resolution brought to Prince William County, and should serve as a cautionary tale for Arizona, as Governor Brewer just signed into law a near-replica of the PWC resolution. In fact, both pieces of legislation were drafted by the same anti-immigration lobbying firm, FAIR, classified by the Southern Poverty Law Center as a "Hate Group," and by the Anti-Defamation League as a "Nativist Extremists Group."

In an emergency response to the passage of such eerily similar legislation in AZ to that proposed in PWC, filmmakers Annabel Park and Eric Byler, in partnership with Harkin's Theaters and our friends at New Organizing Institute, decided to accelerate 9500 Liberty's theatrical release and screen the film in theaters across AZ. The film will screen 4 times daily at Harkins Valley Art Theater in Tempe, AZ, with the special premiere event this Friday, April 30th at 7 pm.

I know I've posted this more than a few times before, but if you don't have a chance to catch the full film, I hope you will watch, and share, this trailer. With the new reality in Arizona, this film becomes the most useful tool we have to understand what is about to happen in Arizona.

9500 Liberty to Screen at Boston Indepenent Film Festival This Sunday

This Sunday at 2 pm the award-winning documentary 9500 Liberty will screen in the Boston Independent Film Festival in Somerville, MA. This film, of which NDN was an early supporter, tells the story of a northern Virgina community torn apart by its inability to manage its changing demographics amidst a climate of racial tension and fear. Such emotions played out in the County Board of Supervisors as anti-immigrant groups lobbied Board Members to pass a resolution that would grant municipal law enforcement officials the authority to ask anyone for whom they had "probable cause" for proof of citizenship. This resolution, eerily similar to the legislation currently being considered in Arizona, had disastrous economic and social ramifications on the County's residence, small businesses, schools and law enforcement.

If you're in the Boston area, I hope you'll make an effort to see this incredible film. Not only is it especially timely given what's going on in Arizona, but filmmakers Annabel Park and Eric Byler do a remarkable job of capturing the emotion on both sides of the issue while still driving home the film's greater point that, as John Grisham wrote, "when we, as a nation of immigrants, debate the immigration issue, we are defining our very identity as Americas."


Check It Out: Simon on Sarah Palin and the Tea Partiers--Fox News' "Happening Now"

Simon appeared on Fox News' Happening Now this morning to discuss Sarah Palin and the Tea Party movement. Watch this clip of Simon below:

Think 2040: A Blueprint for Millennial America

This weekend I joined my friends from the Roosevelt Institute Campus Network at Harvard for RI's annual Northeastern Regional Conference--a gathering of RI students (and alums!) from colleges across New England. In true RI spirit, the conference was an impressive gathering of bright young minds, influential academics and thought leaders, and talented alumni from a diverse set of professional fields.

Since Roosevelt's early days, I've always been amazed with both the level of talent among the "Roosevelters" and the quality of the organization's programs and projects. This weekend I learned about the newest project of the Campus Network, which is no exception to this history of excellence. The new program, Think 2040, leverages the visionary talent of the Roosevelt Network by challenging its members to imagine our country as they hope it will be in 2040, and then identify the policy structures and reforms necessary to realize this vision for America in 2040.

For a more thorough introduction to the program, and a healthy dose of inspiration, watch this video about Roosevelt's newest program: Think 2040.

Roosevelt Campus Network: "Think 2040" from Roosevelt Institute on Vimeo.

Check Out This Clip: Simon on MSNBC's Dylan Ratigan Show

Simon joined special guest-host Eliot Spitzer and former Newt Gingrich spokesman Tony Blankley on MSNBC's Dylan Ratigan this afternoon to discuss a range of issues. You can watch the clip of Simon below:

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