Who We Are


The time has come to consider new, bold ways to make our economy work again for all Americans.

The Economic Security Project is a network committed to advancing the debate on unconditional cash and basic income in the United States. In a time of immense wealth, no one should live in poverty, nor should the middle class be consigned to a future of permanent stagnation or anxiety. Automation, globalization, and financialization are changing the nature of work, and these shifts require us to rethink how to create economic opportunity for all. Now is the time to think seriously about how expanding unconditional cash could work, how to pay for it, and what the political path might be to make it a reality. Join us.

Economic Security Project Team


Natalie is the co-chair and co-founder of the Economic Security Project, a network to support exploration and experimentation of a guaranteed income, and a senior fellow at the The Aspen Institute Future of Work Initiative....

In 2013, Natalie was founding CEO of Peers.org to support people who work in the gig economy. Prior, she was the CEO and co-founder of Rebuild the Dream, a platform for people–driven economic change, with Van Jones.

Previously, Natalie served as digital director for President Obama’s Organizing for America (OFA) and the Democratic National Committee. Natalie built the first digital department at the Sierra Club and served as the deputy organizing director for MoveOn.org.

She’s been awarded fellowships at Institute for the Future, Rockwood Leadership Institute and New America California, and is a board member of the California Budget and Policy Center, the Change.org global foundation, and Liberation in a Generation, a project to close the racial wealth gap.

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In addition to his work at the Economic Security Project, Chris is a Senior Advisor at the Roosevelt Institute, a progressive think tank working to reimagine the rules of the economy. He has led the Economic Security Project’s work to rewrite federal and ... state tax codes to create a monthly tax credit for Americans most in need, a policy which would create a guaranteed income for working people in the United States. In 2018, he published his first book, Fair Shot: Rethinking Inequality and How We Earn.

Before he began his work on economic issues, Hughes co-founded Facebook as a student at Harvard and later led Barack Obama’s digital organizing campaign for President. He was the owner and publisher of The New Republic magazine from 2012 to 2016 and a trustee of the Knight Foundation from 2011 to 2018. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and graduated from Harvard magna cum laude with a degree in History and Literature.

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Dorian T. Warren is President of Community Change and Community Change Action. He is also Co-Chair of the Economic Security Project and a Fellow at the Roosevelt Institute. A progressive scholar, organizer and media personality, Warren has worked to advance ... racial, economic and social justice for over two decades. He previously taught for over a decade at the University of Chicago and Columbia University, where he was Co-Director of the Columbia University Program on Labor Law and Policy. After growing up on the Southside of Chicago, Warren received his B.A. from the University of Illinois and his M.A. and Ph.D. in political science from Yale University.

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Operations Associate

Ebony is a graduate of Stanford University with a degree in Comparative Studies in Race & Ethnicity. A social justice activist throughout college, she went on to provide operational support to nonprofits serving low-income and marginalized communities. Her current interests ... are the intersection of tech and economic justice, and how identity perception shapes our views on policy and society.

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Content Manager

Michael Conti is a photographer and digital artist creating online media and communications strategies at the Economic Security Project. Previously, he used advanced meme technology to improve the public dialogue around issues of immigration and American identity at Define American ... . Michael is based in the Bay Area, and is always looking for new ways to use humor to explore new ideas and create positive connections.

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Special Initiatives Director

Cara Rose DeFabio is a writer, artist and producer working at the intersection of culture and technology, who believes that the future should not be a privilege, but a universal right. Her tech-integrated theater shows have garnered critical acclaim in ... the Bay Area, examining such issues as mourning on Facebook, and AI and intimacy. Working at Fusion Media she brought her love of live events to journalism, creating the Real Future Fair, a conference focused on technology and social justice. Cara lives and works in her hometown of San Francisco and is thrilled to bring her storytelling skills to the fight for economic equality.

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Director of Development & Operations

Guen Han is the Director of Development & Operations at the Economic Security Project. Previously, she served as the Director of Development at Welcoming America, where she led the organization’s fundraising efforts and played a key role in its communications ... activities. Prior to Welcoming America, Guen worked at Amnesty International USA, where she supported Amnesty’s community organizing efforts in the South and Midwest on issues such as death penalty abolition, immigrants’ rights, prisoners of conscience, and women’s rights. Guen is currently pursuing a Master of Arts in Public Management from Johns Hopkins University, and she also holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Comparative Studies and a Certificate in Policy Journalism and Media Studies from Duke University. She is based in the metro Atlanta area.

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Executive Director

Taylor Jo Isenberg is the Executive Director of the Economic Security Project. She was previously the Senior Advisor to the CEO & President and Vice President of the National Network at the Roosevelt Institute, an organization working to redefine the ... rules that guide our social and economic realities. She serves as Chair of the Board of Directors for Scalawag Magazine, a publication advancing social justice through the South’s diverse thinkers, writers and activists. She was a Forbes 30 under 30 for Law and Policy in 2015 and Fusion 30 under 30 Women Shaping Politics in 2016. She is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

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Communications Director

Saadia comes to the Economic Security Project with more than a decade of television reporting and advocacy communications experience. She was most recently on the external relations team at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, and previously ran storytelling ... and communications operations for Define American, a nonprofit that works to shift the national conversation around undocumented immigrants. She was also a reporter and producer at Bloomberg News, as well as communications director at Malaria No More and Economic Fairness Oregon. Her work highlighting the stories of refugees and immigrants as well as her own background as an immigrant inspired Saadia to write a forthcoming historical fiction novel that contrasts the 1947 partition of India with the Trump Administration’s 2017 immigration ban.

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Program and Operations Manager

Vanuyen is proud to be a second generation Vietnamese American and a recent graduate of Stanford University, where her love of hearing people’s stories and uplifting unheard narratives led her to major in History. On campus, she found a home ... in the Asian American community, serving as the Community Orientation Coordinator, Co-Chair of the Stanford Vietnamese Student Association, and a Diversity Outreach Associate with the undergraduate admissions office. After thinking for many years that she would become a doctor, she put a hold on those plans and became intrigued by the potential for policy, rooted in community needs, to inspire collective change. Vanuyen is grateful to be part of the ESP team and to constantly learn about moving towards economic equality through the lens of racial and gender justice.

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Campaigns Director

Adam Ruben has two decades of experience at the leading edge of online campaigning and fundraising, grassroots organizing, communications, and progressive political campaigns. He was the architect behind MoveOn’s successful campaigns to take over the House, Senate, and White House, ... creating a tech-enabled model of scalable field organizing that has spread throughout the progressive movement. He spent more than four years growing the Fight for $15, melding traditional communications with digital strategy, and has consulted with organizations including NARAL Pro-Choice America, Working Families Party, Voter Participation Center, Run Warren Run, PCCC, and Global Zero.

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Federal Campaign Director

Anna Aurilio has fought for the public interest for nearly three decades. As the DC director for Environment America and, prior to that, as the Legislative Director for U.S. PIRG, Anna led a team of advocates and mobilized grassroots members ... and state networks to win policies to cut pollution, protect public lands, and boost renewable energy and auto fuel economy. She helped create the Climate Action Campaign, a coalition of national environmental groups working to win national climate action, and the Green Scissors campaign which recruited bi-partisan support to cut billions of dollars in government spending for wasteful, harmful programs. She has testified in Congress numerous times, been quoted in major news outlets, and was annually named a top grassroots lobbyist by The Hill for nearly a decade. Anna is on the board of directors of Voices for Progress and the National Environmental Law Center.

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Illinois Campaign Director

Sachin Chheda has worked for more than 25 years as a grassroots advocate and campaign strategist, in the reproductive freedom, fair trade, international human rights, voting rights, and public education movements. He moves candidate, issue, and referendum campaigns from launch to ... victory, and as director of the Fair Elections Project, helped organize and launch the Whitford case to limit partisan gerrymandering, reaching the U.S. Supreme Court. Sachin now helps manage the Economic Security Project’s work in states across the country. He lives in Wisconsin with his wife and their four children, and currently serves on the board of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra. He previously served as national chairperson of NARAL Pro-Choice America. Contact info: 414-412-6099

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California Campaign Director

Teri Olle is the California Campaign Director for Economic Security Project Action. Beginning her career as an attorney, Teri soon moved into policy and issue advocacy, working on state and local efforts to ban toxic chemicals and pesticides, decrease food ... insecurity and hunger, increase gender representation in politics. She is a founding member of a political action committee dedicated to inserting parent voice into local politics and served as the president of the board of Emerge California. She lives in San Francisco with her husband and two daughters.

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State Campaigns Director

Pedro Morillas has spent the past 15 years directing issue advocacy campaigns at every level of government. From local ordinances on solar power, to national efforts focused on reducing gun violence, his experience spans a wide array of progressive issues, ... campaign strategies and tactics. He helped design and implement Everytown for Gun Safety’s state legislative advocacy program, which helped reshape the political landscape on what used to be considered a third rail political issue. Prior to that he directed the immigration reform efforts at Organizing for Action. Pedro got his start in state legislative advocacy in California as the legislative director of the California Public Interest Research Group (CALPIRG) where he spent five years in Sacramento working to advance consumer protection and good government reforms.

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Senior Fellows

President Emeritus of SEIU

Andy Stern is the President Emeritus of the 2.2 million-member Service Employees International Union (SEIU). Stern has been featured on The Colbert Show, 60 Minutes, CNN, Charlie Rose, and on the covers of the New York Times Magazine, Fortune, and ... on the covers of the New York Times Magazine, Fortune, and BusinessWeek. Mr. Stern was a Presidential Appointee on the Simpson- Bowles Commission and is now a Senior Fellow at The Economic Security Project. His new book –Raising the Floor: How a Universal Basic Income Can Renew Our Economy and Restore the American Dream calls for America to take bold action to prepare for the massive potential of job disruption.

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Senior Fellow, Economic Security Project

Mia Birdsong is a family and community visionary who has spent more than 20 years fighting for the self-determination, and pointing out the brilliant adaptations, of everyday people. As Co-Director of Family Story, she is updating this nation’s outdated picture ... of the family in America (hint: rarely 2.5 kids and two heterosexual parents living behind a white picket fence). She is a Senior Fellow at the Economic Security Project, where she is expanding the current universal basic income movement to include perspectives and leadership from communities experiencing economic and racial injustice. Previously, Mia was the Vice President of the Family Independence Initiative, an organization that leverages the power of data and stories to illuminate and accelerate the initiative low-income families take to improve their lives. Mia’s 2015 TED talk, “The Story We Tell About Poverty Isn’t True,” has been viewed over 1.6 million times already. She publishes widely, including her occasional cult-favorite column #advicefromagrownandsexyblackwoman, and speaks at universities and conferences across the country. Mia is also a modern Renaissance woman. She has spent time organizing to abolish prisons, teaching teenagers about sex and drugs, interviewing literary luminaries like Edwidge Danticat, David Foster Wallace, and John Irving, and attending births as a midwifery apprentice. Mia is a graduate of Oberlin College, an inaugural Ascend Fellow of The Aspen Institute, and a New America California Fellow. She sits on the Board of Directors of Forward Together and the North Oakland Community Charter School. She lives and dreams big in Oakland, California.

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Senior Fellow, Economic Security Project

Ameya Pawar is the former alderman of Chicago’s 47th Ward and the first Asian and Indian American elected to the Chicago City Council and major office in Illinois. While in office, Ameya focused legislative efforts around social justice, worker rights, ... and economic justice. To this end, Ameya led most all labor policy and worker rights legislation passed in Chicago over the last eight years, including raising the minimum wage to $13/hr, guaranteeing paid sick leave, combating wage theft, and preserving housing for Chicago’s most vulnerable. Ameya has a bachelor’s degree in religion and philosophy from Missouri Valley College, a master’s degree in public administration from the Illinois Institute of Technology, and is a two-time graduate from the University of Chicago with master’s degrees in threat and response management and social service administration. Ameya was a US State Department Critical Language Program alum, a 2012 University of Illinois Edgar Fellow, and was named to Crain’s Chicago 40 under 40 in 2011. Most recently, he was named a 2018 McCormick Foundation Executive Fellow. Prior to leaving office, Ameya chaired the Chicago Resilient Families Task Force. The task force made recommendations on a city-run basic income pilot, the expansion and modernization of the EITC, and the need for narrative change public policy.

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Steering Committee

Managing Partner, General Catalyst

Hemant Taneja is a managing partner at General Catalyst and founded its Silicon Valley operations. His investment thesis — “economies of unscale” — says that small, tightly focused companies can leverage web services, datasets, and AI to compete against larger ... established competitors. Hemant’s investment portfolio includes companies in the fields of medicine, finance, and education, including Stripe, Snap, Color Genomics, Gusto, Livongo Health, TuneIn, ClassDojo, Fundbox, Digit, and Fractyl. Alongside his venture work, he has co-founded the public policy advocacy group Advanced Energy Economy and serves on the board of directors of the non-profit education organization Khan Academy, and board of fellows of the Stanford School of Medicine. Hemant holds five degrees from MIT and has lectured at MIT and Stanford University.

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President & CEO, Roosevelt Institute

Felicia Wong is the President and CEO of the Roosevelt Institute, which seeks to reimagine the social and economic policies of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt for the 21st century. Felicia came to the Institute from the Democracy Alliance, and previously ... ran operations and product development at a venture-funded education services company. Her public service includes a White House Fellowship in the Office of the Attorney General and a political appointment in the Office of the Secretary of the Navy. She holds a Ph.D. in political science from the University of California, Berkeley.

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President Emeritus of SEIU

Andy Stern is the President Emeritus of the 2.2 million-member Service Employees International Union (SEIU). Stern has been featured on The Colbert Show, 60 Minutes, CNN, Charlie Rose, and on the covers of the New York Times Magazine, Fortune, and ... on the covers of the New York Times Magazine, Fortune, and BusinessWeek. Mr. Stern was a Presidential Appointee on the Simpson- Bowles Commission and is now a Senior Fellow at The Economic Security Project. His new book –Raising the Floor: How a Universal Basic Income Can Renew Our Economy and Restore the American Dream calls for America to take bold action to prepare for the massive potential of job disruption.

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CEO, Spell

Serkan Piantino is a technology executive and entrepreneur in New York City, and currently Founder and CEO of Spell. Previously he was Founder and Site Director of Facebook New York and Co-Founder of Facebook AI Research. While at Facebook he ... lead the development of infrastructure and algorithms for News Feed, Timeline and Messenger. Serkan is also an active advocate for the tech community in New York City, having served on Mayor Bloomberg’s Council on Technology and Innovation and currently on the boards of Tech:NYC and AFSE. Serkan holds a B.S. from Carnegie Mellon University, where he serves on the Advisory Board of the College of Computer Science.

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Future Justice Fund is a grantmaking organization rooted in the belief that all people deserve a free, vibrant, and productive life. FJF currently has two core initiatives: ending mass incarceration in the United States, and exploring bold, cash-based solutions for ... ending poverty. FJF was founded in December 2015 by Mike Krieger, a co-founder of Instagram, and his wife Kaitlyn Krieger, who oversees FJF’s grantmaking strategy and runs day-to-day operations.

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Co-founder, Credo Mobile and author, With Liberty and Dividends For All

Peter is an entrepreneur and writer who has co-founded and led several successful companies, including Credo Mobile. He earned a B.A. in history from Harvard and an M.A. in government from Georgetown. He was a Washington correspondent for Newsweek and ... west coast correspondent for The New Republic. He has served on numerous boards of directors, including the National Cooperative Bank, Greenpeace International and the Center for Economic and Policy Research. His books include Capitalism 3.0 and With Liberty and Dividends for All.

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President of the Goldhirsh Foundation

TARA ROTH is the president of the Goldhirsh Foundation. Prior to this role, Tara bridged the worlds of marketing, media, and philanthropy as the founding COO of GOOD and a social strategy advisor. Tara began her career in marketing and ... business development for NBCinternet and Infoseek. She has worked with organizations such as Participant Media, Fifteen Foundation, and the New Schools Venture Fund. As a senior advisor to GOOD, Tara helped launch the Pepsi Refresh Project. Tara received a bachelor’s degree at Cornell University, and has an MBA from Oxford University where she was awarded a Skoll scholarship in social entrepreneurship. Tara serves on the board of Southern California Grantmakers and on the regional advisory boards of Opportunity Fund, FUSE Corps, First in the World, and 826LA. She is a Senior Fellow at USC’s Brittingham Social Enterprise Lab.

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Co-Founder and CEO of GOOD

BEN GOLDHIRSH is the co-founder and CEO of GOOD, a global community of, by, and for pragmatic idealists working towards individual and collective progress. Outside of GOOD, Ben is the Chairman of The Goldhirsh Foundation, an organization built to help ... social innovators implement and scale solutions to critical societal challenges. A co-founder and board member of City Year Los Angeles, Goldhirsh graduated from Brown University and currently resides in Los Angeles.

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Assistant Professor , Political Philosophy, Stanford University

Juliana Bidadanure is an Assistant Professor in Political Philosophy with an affiliation to the Center for Ethics in Society. Before coming to Stanford, she completed her PhD in Political Philosophy within the School of Politics, Economics and Philosophy at the ... University of York (UK), and was then a 2014-2015 Max Weber Postdoctoral Fellow at the European University Institute (Italy).

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Albert Wenger is a partner at Union Square Ventures. Before joining USV, Albert was the president of del.icio.us through the company’s sale to Yahoo and an angel investor (Etsy, Tumblr). He previously founded or co-founded several companies, including a management ... consulting firm and an early hosted data analytics company. Albert graduated from Harvard College in economics and computer science and holds a Ph.D. in Information Technology from MIT.

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Tom Matzzie. A widely recognized entrepreneur and a respected leader in social impact, Tom Matzzie founded Ethical Electric in 2011 with the belief that everyone should have easy access to renewable wind and solar energy. Throughout his career, he’s developed ... powerful online communities designed to disrupt incumbents; he’s pioneered innovations now considered best practices in civic engagement; and he’s raised over $150 million for various cause-related donors and organizations. Before starting Ethical Electric, Tom was a principal at Gladius Strategy LLC, the Washington director for MoveOn.org, an online mobilization director for the AFL-CIO, and a director of online organizing for the Democratic National Committee. A graduate of the University of Notre Dame, Tom was a finalist for the 2015 EY Entrepreneur of the Year award for the Greater Washington region. He was also named “a rising star” by The New York Times Magazine for his innovative work with MoveOn.org.

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Head of Bloomberg Beta

Head of Bloomberg Beta, a venture capital firm investing in the future of work, Roy has spent time making startups, as a corporate executive, in government, media, and academia — and is one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People in ... Business. He teaches about media at U.C. Berkeley and also co-chaired, with New America’s Anne-Marie Slaughter, the Shift Commission, a national effort to understand the 10-20 year future of work in America.

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Alicia Garza

Gerald Huff

Ian Bassin
Former Associate White House Counsel to President Barack Obama

James K. Boyce
Professor of Economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Jeremy Howard
Founding researcher, fast.ai

Jeremy Bird
Founding Partner & CEO, 270 Strategies

Joe Greenstein
Co-founder InnerSpace, former founder/CEO Flixster

John Battelle
EIC + CEO, NewCo

Jon Carson
Former Executive Director, OFA

Josh Fryday
President, Golden State Opportunity

Juliana Bidadanure
Professor of Philosophy, Stanford University

Kate McFarland
Basic Income Earth Network

Larry Cohen
Founder, BuildTheFloor

Marcellus Andrews
Professor of Economics, Bucknell University

Marina Gorbis
Executive Director, Institute for the Future

Mark Gomez
Founder, Leap Forward Project

Mia Birdsong
Co-Director, Family Story

Michael Faye
Co-founder, GiveDirectly and Segovia

Misha Chellam
Founder, Tradecraft

Molly Haigh
President, Megaphone Strategies

Natalie Foster
Fellow, Institute for the Future and New America California

Pedro Domingos
Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, University of Washington

Peter Barnes
Co-Founder Credo Mobile, Author, With Liberty and Dividends For All

Robin Chase
Co-founder Zipcar, Author, Peers Inc

Roland Fryer
Professor of Economics, Harvard University

Ron Carmel
Co-Founder, 2D BOY, Indie Fund

Rose Broome
Co-founder & CEO, HandUp

Roy Bahat
Head, Bloomberg Beta

Sam Hammond
Niskanen Center, Poverty and Welfare Policy Analyst

Sam Altman
President, Y Combinator

Sandhya Anantharaman
Co-Director, Universal Income Project

Seiji Carpenter
Vice President, David Binder Research

Simon Denny

Tom Begich
Alaska State Senator – Elect

Yochai Benkler
Professor, Harvard Law School and Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society

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