Leading Through Crisis: NMV Announces 2020 Groups to Watch
We’re thrilled to recognize the leadership of these inspiring entrepreneurs.
Mission and Team
We invest in progressive startups.
Spark civic engagement + Change culture + Build movements
This applies leverage at three critical points, creating momentum.
Smaller actions become great shifts, driving long-term political impact.
Taren Stinebrickner-Kauffman is the President of New Media Ventures. Before joining NMV, Taren was a Senior Product Manager at Change.org, and the founder and Executive Director of global consumer watchdog SumOfUs. Taren also spent years in Democratic politics and the climate and labor movements, working for groups like MoveOn.org, the Alliance for Climate Protection, and the AFL-CIO.
Christie George is one of the country’s leading experts on investing in mission-driven startups. As President of New Media Ventures, she oversaw investment into a portfolio of more than 80 nonprofits and for-profits, including Blavity, Indivisible and SwingLeft. Her work centers on fostering an independent, vibrant, and diverse media sector.
Christie started her career at a venture capital firm, spent six years managing sales and marketing for Women Make Movies, and is a co-founder of Louder (acquired by Change.
Christie holds a BA from Yale University and a MBA with distinction from the University of Oxford, where she was a Skoll Scholar in Social Entrepreneurship and graduated with the Said Prize. She lives in Oakland and is a proud co-owner of the Rio Theater in Monte Rio, CA.
As Managing Director at New Media Ventures, Shannon is responsible for spearheading the organization’s thought leadership and learning work, attracting new investors to the Innovation Fund, and sharing the good news about NMV and its portfolio organizations.
Shannon leverages story-telling, strategy, and organizational development to help mission-driven organizations grow. Her deep and diverse fundraising and communications experience – including running grassroots campaigns with the State PIRGs and securing major gifts at Stanford Law School, The Nature Conservancy, and Citizen Engagement Lab – allows her to design and execute winning programs and campaigns. And as the host of the annual NMV Summit, Shannon brings together leading innovators, thought leaders, investors, and donors to learn from one another and move the field of progressive innovation forward.
Shannon has a B.A. from Stanford University and an M.B.A. from University of Michigan, where she focused on strategy and social innovation. When not at work, she enjoys travel and photography, Oakland’s best eats and treats, and walking her rescue pup Hamilton.
As Director of Partnerships, Arbour is responsible for leading NMV’s fundraising and partnership efforts, including developing and overseeing fundraising strategies, funder communication, internal systems, and external-facing events.
Arbour has served in development and relationship building roles for the past 12 years. Prior to joining NMV, Arbour held the position of Director of Strategic Partnerships at Aspire Public Schools, Director of Strategic Partnerships at East Bay College Fund (now Oakland Promise), Director of External Relations at OneJustice, and a variety of other development positions in higher ed and youth development fields.
Arbour earned a B.A. in Communication from Western Washington University and an M.A. in Communication from San Diego State University. In her free time, Arbour enjoys spending time with friends and loved ones in beautiful Oakland, watching the Warriors win, dinner parties (pre-COVID19), cycling, and some karaoke when the mood strikes.
As Fundraising & Communications Manager, Alex is responsible for coordinating grant proposals and reports, facilitating NMV’s interactions with its network and the public, and supporting the NMV leadership team.
Alex joined from Grassroots Campaigns, where he fundraised for Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Southern Poverty Law Center, and other nonprofits. Previously, he wrote freelance book reviews and worked in Publicity and Online Marketing at Yale University Press.
Alex earned a BA in English from Yale University and originally hails from San Diego, CA. Outside of work, he loves running, surfing, and reading and writing fiction.
As an Investment Principal, Wes is responsible for leading due diligence and deal execution, building pipeline, and supporting NMV's for-profit and nonprofit portfolio.
Wes joins from the Global Development Incubator, where he helped domestic and international startups and social enterprises think through capital raises, growth plans, and ways to partner to scale their impact. Previously, he was trained as a strategy consultant at Monitor Deloitte where he worked with a variety of public, private, and nonprofit clients, focused on market entry strategy and data analytics.
Wes earned a BA in Economics from Johns Hopkins University, with minors in Business and Music. Outside of work, Wes loves to go camping, listen to and play jazz music, and is a diehard fan of the NBA and his favorite team, the Utah Jazz. Originally from the East Bay, he is thrilled to be back to explore Oakland and San Francisco again.
Mia joins from Mazel Immigration Law, where she was in charge of operations for the firm, including customizing the firm’s database, establishing best practices for data management, and analyzing workflows to increase case preparation efficiency. Previously, she worked in Community Support and Operations for Kiva where she assisted Kiva lenders and provided operations support to her team.
Mia earned a BA in Economics from Carleton College, where she also played on the Varsity Softball team. Outside of work, she loves to spend time in the ocean, play sports, and try new recipes.
Dáiyah (pronounced Dye-ya) Bilal-Threats is the current Special Advisor to the Executive Director and Director for Strategic Alliances at the National Education Association.
Anna Fink joined Amalgamated Bank in 2016 after leading the Wyss Foundation’s Women’s Equality Program in the U.S. and Latin America.
Felicia Wong is the President and CEO of the Roosevelt Institute. She is responsible for overseeing all of the organization’s major program areas.
A public broadcasting advocate for nearly 40 years, John has founded community radio and television stations and brought wireless broadband services dedicated to schools and nonprofits to markets.
As Senior Advisor at the Democracy Alliance (DA), Julie plays a key strategic role in developing the DA’s investment strategy and investment recommendations.
Sandor Straus is the Managing Member of Tigmera, LLC and President of the Firedoll Foundation.
Sarah is co-founder and CEO of Propel Capital, which invests in entrepreneurs, innovators, and changemakers building a more just and equitable society. Propel uses blended capital (political, investment, philanthropic) to accelerate durable solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges.