Our Staff

At Every Texan, we are people who know and people who care. From accomplished experts to rising stars, we strive to represent and celebrate the diversity of Texas.

Executive Team

Ann Beeson | Chief Executive Officer

A renowned social justice lawyer, former philanthropy executive, and frequent public speaker and writer, Ann Beeson joined Every Texan in 2013. She was previously the Executive Director of U.S. Programs at the Open Society Foundations, where she promoted human rights, justice, and accountability nationwide. Beeson was the national Associate Legal Director of the American Civil Liberties Union, where she worked from 1995-2007. She argued twice before the U.S. Supreme Court, litigated numerous cases around the country, and launched groundbreaking programs to stop the erosion of civil liberties in the name of national security and to protect free speech and privacy on the Internet. Beeson has been recognized as one of the nation’s top lawyers by American Lawyer Magazine and the National Law Journal. A proud Texan, Beeson has embraced a wide range of innovative strategies to advance social change. Before joining Every Texan, she launched a new non-profit to involve the creative sector in social change. In 2012-13, she was a Senior Fellow and Lecturer at the Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Life at the University of Texas, where she co-produced a public media series to inspire more people to get engaged in their communities. She grew up in Dallas, Texas, and received undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Texas. Beeson obtained her law degree from Emory University School of Law, and served as law clerk to the Honorable Barefoot Sanders, then chief judge of the Northern District of Texas.

Anne Dunkelberg | Associate Director, Program Director - Health & Wellness Team

Anne Dunkelberg oversees health care policy for Every Texan. She focuses on policy and budget issues related to health care access and immigrants’ access to public benefits. She joined Every Texan in 1994 from the State Medicaid Director’s Office at the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. Anne is a founding member of the statewide Children’s Health Coverage Coalition (formerly the Texas CHIP Coalition) and the Cover Texas Now Coalition. She has been recognized by Families USA as an outstanding Consumer Health Advocate and by the LBJ School of Public Affairs Alumni Association as a Distinguished Public Servant. She was the primary author of the first edition of Texas Medicaid in Perspective (“the Pink Book”) and serves on the Texas Medicaid Managed Care Statewide advisory committee and the Texas Healthcare Transformation Waiver Executive Waiver Committee. Anne is a native Texan, and received her B.A. from the University of Texas at Austin, and her Master of Public Affairs from the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin.

Legislative & Policy Team

Luis Figueroa
Luis Figueroa, Legislative & Policy Director

Luis Figueroa joined Every Texan in 2018 as the first Legislative and Policy Director. In this important new role, Luis oversees Every Texan’s comprehensive legislative strategy and leads our distinguished team of policy experts. He was previously General Counsel for Texas State Senator José Rodríguez and Executive Director of the Texas Senate Hispanic Caucus. Previously, he served as the Legislative Attorney for the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF), where he worked from 2004 to 2013. A proud Texan from El Paso, Luis received the 2013 MALDEF Award for services performed on behalf of the Latino community in pursuit of social justice, the 2011 Champion of Equality and Justice Award from LULAC, and the 2009 Spirit of Change Award by State Rep. Joaquin Castro, among other honors. He has a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Speech Communications with a concentration in American Politics and Law from Trinity University in San Antonio, and his Juris Doctorate from the University Of Texas School Of Law. He is licensed to practice law in the State of Texas.

Mia Ibarra, Deputy Legislative & Policy Director

Mia Ibarra helps develop and coordinate advocacy and engagement strategies across all of Every Texan’s policy areas. She joined Every Texan in 2012 as an Outreach Associate and coordinator of Texas Forward, a state-wide revenue coalition, and has since focused on a variety of issue areas including immigration and family-friendly workplace policies like paid sick days. Mia holds a Master of Public Affairs from the LBJ School of Public Affairs, University of Texas at Austin and a Bachelor of Arts in political economy from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington.

Legislative & Policy Intern — Martin Martinez, University of Texas at Austin Masters Student, Public Affairs 

Economic Opportunity Team

Chandra Kring Villanueva, Program Director, Economic Opportunity Team

Chandra Villanueva oversees Every Texan’s work on education, workforce development and job quality. She joined Every Texan in 2010 and focused on school finance and education policy ranging from early education to higher education access and success. Prior to joining Every Texan, Chandra was the manager of Advocacy and Public Policy with the Women’s Prison Association (WPA) in New York City. At WPA, she educated formerly incarcerated women on the legislative process and researched options for pregnant women in the criminal justice system. Chandra has also served as a Bill Emerson National Hunger Fellow with the Congressional Hunger Center with placements in Tucson, Arizona and Washington, DC. Chandra earned a Master of Public Administration from New York University’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, and a Bachelor of Arts from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington.

Jonathan Lewis, Senior Policy Analyst

Jonathan Lewis joined Every Texan in 2018. His work focuses on creating economic opportunity for Texas families through policies that promote financial security and create good jobs. Previously, Jonathan worked as a policy analyst at the Texas Legislative Budget Board where he worked on the Texas Government Efficiency and Effectiveness Report and Health and Human Services forecasting. Jonathan’s prior work experience also includes working with the New York City Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget where he worked on consumer protection which included implementation of the city’s paid sick leave law. Jonathan earned his Master of Public Administration from New York University’s Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service and a Bachelor of Business Administration in Economics from Baylor University.

Ashley Williams, Policy Analyst

Ashley joined Every Texan in 2018 and focuses on postsecondary education and immigration policy. She is dedicated to intersectional policy research and advocacy and previously researched the disparate impact of high-cost online lending on communities of color and women. Ashley holds a Master of Social Science from UCLA, a Bachelor of Business Administration in Business Honors and Finance and a Bachelor of Arts in African and African Diaspora Studies from the University of Texas at Austin.

Simona Harry - Every Texan
Simona Gabriela Harry, Policy Leaders of Tomorrow Program Coordinator

Simona joined Every Texan as the Higher Education Policy and Advocacy Intern in the summer of 2020. During that time, she worked on a project to launch the pilot policy initiative to aid college students in entering and championing public policy and policy advocacy in Texas. After developing the community-centered curriculum for the fellowship, she joined the Every Texan team as the fellowship coordinator. She has previously interned for Annie’s List as a Programs department intern and taught first and second-grade students at a non-profit learning center in East Austin. She is currently working towards earning her Bachelor’s degree in English and Black Studies at the University of Texas at Austin.

Economic Opportunity Intern —  Lynn Huynh, Undergraduate in Advertising and Women’s & Gender Studies, University of Texas at Austin

Invest in Texas Team

Eva DeLuna
Eva DeLuna Castro, Program Director, Invest in Texas Team

Eva DeLuna Castro oversees Every Texan’s work on fiscal and budget policy. She joined Every Texan in 1998 and focuses primarily on the state budget. Before coming to Every Texan, she was an Analyst for the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts, researching various policy issues related to state revenue and spending. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in History and Literature, cum laude, from Harvard University in 1988 and a Master of Public Affairs from the LBJ School of Public Affairs at The University of Texas at Austin in 1997.

Dick Lavine
Dick Lavine, Senior Fiscal Analyst

Dick Lavine focuses on building state and local revenue systems that meet Texans’ needs. Before coming to Every Texan in 1994, he was a Senior Researcher at the House Research Organization of the Texas House of Representatives for ten years. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst and served for many years as a member and chairman of the Board of Directors of the Travis Central Appraisal District. He is also a member of the Executive Board of AFSCME Texas Retirees, the statewide union local of retired public employees. The Equity Center named him the 2011 Champion for Equity for his work to reform our tax system to ensure it can adequately support public education and other public services. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Economics, magna cum laude, from Harvard College in 1969, and a Doctor of Jurisprudence, cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania in 1975.

Health & Wellness Team

Anne Dunkelberg | Associate Director, Program Director - Health & Wellness Team

Anne Dunkelberg oversees health care policy for Every Texan. She focuses on policy and budget issues related to health care access and immigrants’ access to public benefits. She joined Every Texan in 1994 from the State Medicaid Director’s Office at the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. Anne is a founding member of the statewide Children’s Health Coverage Coalition (formerly the Texas CHIP Coalition) and the Cover Texas Now Coalition. She has been recognized by Families USA as an outstanding Consumer Health Advocate and by the LBJ School of Public Affairs Alumni Association as a Distinguished Public Servant. She was the primary author of the first edition of Texas Medicaid in Perspective (“the Pink Book”) and serves on the Texas Medicaid Managed Care Statewide advisory committee and the Texas Healthcare Transformation Waiver Executive Waiver Committee. Anne is a native Texan, and received her B.A. from the University of Texas at Austin, and her Master of Public Affairs from the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin.

Rachel Cooper, Senior Policy Analyst, Health & Wellness Team

Rachel joined Every Texan in 2012 with a focus on food and nutrition programs as well as obesity. Before joining Every Texan, she worked for the Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) where she was in charge of research and data analysis and authored reports such as the School Breakfast Scorecard, Hunger Doesn’t Take a Vacation, and State of the States. Cooper also worked for the Children’s Defense Fund (CDF), in their New York office, where she focused on helping families gain access to programs that provide work supports, such as tax credits, Medicaid, SCHIP, and food stamps. Cooper received her Masters in Human Development and Social Policy from Northwestern University.

Melissa McChesney
Melissa McChesney, Senior Policy Analyst, Health & Wellness Team

Melissa joined Every Texan in 2015 and works remotely from Houston. She focuses on policy and practice related to outreach and enrollment for the Affordable Care Act (ACA) health insurance Marketplace, Medicaid, and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), including access to coverage for immigrants. Melissa has provided policy analysis, training, and troubleshooting guidance to health care enrollment assisters across Texas. Prior to joining the Every Texan, she worked as a Senior Policy Analyst for the Texas Health and Human Services Commission on the team that implemented eligibility changes to the Medicaid and CHIP programs required by the ACA. Melissa earned a Master of Science in Social Work from the University of Texas at Austin and a Bachelor of Science in Sociology from the University of Central Arkansas.

Stacey Pogue
Stacey Pogue, Senior Policy Analyst, Health & Wellness Team

Stacey Pogue joined Every Texan in 2008. She focuses on health policy issues. Before coming to Every Texan, she did health policy research with the Medicaid and CHIP Division of the Health and Human Services Commission and the Texas Department of Insurance. In 2010 and 2011, she was selected to serve as a funded Consumer Representative to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). Pogue earned a Bachelor of Science in Geography, summa cum laude, from Texas A&M University in 1997 and a Master of Public Affairs from the LBJ School of Public Affairs at The University of Texas at Austin in 2005.

Health & Wellness Intern – Maria Elena Garcia, Masters of Public Health Candidate, University of Texas at Austin

Communications Team

Oliver Bernstein, Communications Director

Oliver Bernstein joined Every Texan as Communications Director in 2014. He uses communications strategies to advance the organization’s vision of a Texas where everyone is healthy, well-educated and financially secure. He helped guide Every Texan through its successful rebranding to Every Texan in 2020 and guided communications strategy through three state legislative sessions. He previously worked as National Communications Strategist for the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign, which aims to replace coal with clean energy. He also directed the Sierra Club’s national diversity media program from 2006 to 2009, serving as a bilingual on-the-record spokesman and developing Hispanic media outreach plans. Oliver had a one-year fellowship in Mexico City, where he used communications and outreach strategies to raise attention on air quality and public health. He has worked on several political campaigns and has extensive crisis communications experience. A native of Miami, Florida, Oliver has lived in Austin since 2004 with his wife, a native Austinite.

Gina Chavez, Communications Associate

Gina Chavez joined Every Texan in 2010. She works on all of our publications, marketing and social media. She was the Communications Coordinator at Texas Pharmacy Association for six years before leaving the country to volunteer for eight months in El Salvador. Chavez is also a native Austinite and an award-winning musician. She holds a Bachelor of Journalism with a concentration in Latin American Studies from the University of Texas at Austin.

Daniela Guerrero, External Relations Coordinator

Daniela (Dany) Guerrero joined Every Texan in 2020 as the first External Relations Coordinator. She provides logistical support to staff around external relations opportunities to advance our policy, communications and fundraising goals. Prior to moving to Texas, she began her college career at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she did research on citizenship laws and worked with the Global Relations team at UNC Global. In 2016, she moved to Austin to transfer to the University of Texas at Austin and earn a Bachelor of Arts in Government.

Minnah Zaheer, Digital Communications Associate

Minnah Zaheer joined Every Texan as an intern in 2019 before becoming the Digital Communications Associate in 2020. She uses digital strategies to engage younger audiences and help them recognize the power of public policy. Originally from Houston, she has a Bachelors of Journalism with a minor in American History from the University of Texas at Austin. While in college, she served as the managing editor for Afterglow ATX, a student-run news publication, and as a copy editor for the Daily Texan.

Research & Data

Amy Knop-Narbutis, Research & Data Director

Amy Knop-Narbutis joined Every Texan in 2019 as the Senior Research Analyst over data-based advocacy projects such as Texas KIDS COUNT. Previously, she led all research and program evaluation efforts for the child welfare nonprofit Upbring, including launching the groundbreaking Texas Youth Permanency Study. Amy came to Austin via the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin, where she graduated top of her class with a Master in Global Policy Studies. She previously served as a Fulbright grantee in Costa Rica, worked with microfinance recipients in Peru, and with Fair Trade artisans in Ecuador. A graduate of the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Results-Based Leadership Institute, Leadership Austin’s Emerge program, and the American Heart Association’s Leaders with Heart program, Amy is highly involved in her local community and actively volunteers with the immigrant shelter Casa Marianella, Communities in Schools, and the Ending Community Homelessness Coalition. In her free time, she enjoys participating in Austin’s vibrant arts and comedy scenes.

Katie Martin Lightfoot, Census Community Engagement Coordinator

Katie joined Every Texan in 2019 as the 2020 Census Community Engagement Coordinator. She brings strategic vision and tactical execution of Every Texan’s work with the Texas Counts Campaign. Prior to joining Every Texan, Katie served as the Tennessee State Director for Impact America and Student Advocacy Manager for Campaign for School Equity. She earned her undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Texas at Austin. Katie holds a Master of Public Affairs from the LBJ School of Public Affairs and a Masters of Science of Social from the School of Work.

Research & Data Intern – Tara Blagg, Pardee RAND Graduate School Doctoral Student, Public Policy Analysis

Census Community Engagement Intern – Jamie Turcios-Villalta, University of Texas at Austin Undergraduate Student, Health & Society and Government

Finance & Administration Team

Monifa Jordan, Director of Finance & Administration

Monifa Jordan brings over 15 years of experience in nonprofit accounting, budgeting, financial reporting, and auditing to Every Texan. Prior to joining Every Texan as the Director of Finance & Administration in June 2019, she worked as Assistant Controller at KIPP Austin, Internal Auditor for AISD, Accounts Manager at Dallas CASA, and Senior Accounting Associate at Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Texas. In addition to her official duties, Monifa was a volunteer advocate for foster youth at Dallas CASA, and has been a mentor to young girls of color in Austin public schools. Monifa earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Missouri Western State University and is a licensed Certified Public Accountant with the state of Texas. She is committed to using her skills to support organizations that help vulnerable people and underserved communities.

Valerie L. Davidson, Manager of Administration

Valerie L. Davidson joined Every Texan in 2002. She is responsible for accounts payable, payroll, and other business. Before coming to Every Texan, Davidson was an administrator in the Office of the District Judges of Travis County. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Southwest Texas State University in 1997.

Development

Amanda Posson, Senior Manager for Strategic Growth

Amanda is honored to support systematic change for Texan families through her role as CPPP’s Senior Manager for Strategic Growth. Previously, Amanda served as the Vice President of Programs at Refugee Services of Texas (RST), where she worked for nine years in a variety of roles observing firsthand how policy impacts the lives of refugees, immigrants, and survivors of trafficking. Her passion for displaced families’ well-being developed into aptitudes for fundraising, advocacy, and program evaluation.  Previously, she served as Area Director of the RST Austin office. Amanda received a Masters of Arts in Latin American Studies with a focus on migration from the University of Texas in 2009, and is a fluent Spanish speaker. 

Cecilia Weber, Grants Manager & Writer

Cecilia Weber joined Every Texan in 2017. She is responsible for overseeing all foundation grants. Born and raised in Washington state, she received her Bachelor of Strategic Communications and Creative Writing from Seattle University where she graduated magna cum laude. While attending university she worked at Morningside Academy, an elementary school for children with cognitive disabilities. Upon graduation, she worked as a project manager and bookkeeper for a general contracting company. Prior to moving to Texas she was working with The Mockingbird Society, a nonprofit dedicated to improving foster care and ending youth homelessness.