Agenda & Program Schedule

Plenary Speakers

Jackie Coolidge, chair of Lobby Corps
League of Women Voters of the United States
Jackie Coolidge

Jackie Coolidge is the chair of Lobby Corps for the League of Women Voters of the United States, which lobbies for the League on Capitol Hill. She also does advocacy work for LWV-Maryland, giving testimony on League positions on bills before the Maryland General Assembly.

She also advocates in favor of Ranked Choice Voting for Montgomery County, Maryland on behalf of the local league, and was head of their committee for redistricting reform.

She is a retired economist from the World Bank and has degrees in economics and public policy from the University of Michigan, Princeton, and Johns Hopkins University.

Nile Blass, DMV regional organizer
League of Women Voters of the United States
Nile Blass

She is responsible for organizing strategies and capacity building at the DMV and national level. Prior to joining the League, Nile worked to advance social equity through political advocacy, both institutionally and through grassroots organizing.

As an organizer with Hoyas for Slavery Accountability, she helped coordinate restorative and restitution efforts at Georgetown University for the descendants of its enslaved population.

During the pandemic that greatly impacted vulnerable student communities, Nile became the first Black woman in history to be elected Georgetown University’s Student Body President. During her time in office, her administration provided students with financial stipends, career development programs, secure housing, and the necessary resources to build an online and engaged student community. In addition, she brings experience working at the House Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill and with the Maryland General Assembly, among much more. 

Nile is a native of the Washington, DC area and earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Government from Georgetown University. 

Yterenickia ‘YT’ Bell, senior director
And Still I Vote for the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights
Yterenickia ‘YT’ Bell

She’s held the role of the national organizing director at Care in Action/National Domestic Workers Alliance supervising the state directors and program managers in seven core states while developing electoral and legislative strategy for state and federal campaigns. Prior to that, she was the director at the Progressive Governance Academy, a project between the State Innovation Exchange (SiX), Local Progress, and re:power to build and develop the leadership and governance skills of progressive state and local elected officials across the country.

She was also the deputy director of a statewide public policy coalition table, Georgia Engaged (now America Votes Georgia), where she provided strategies and best practices for successful programmatic implementation.

She is a native Georgian and graduate of Georgia State University with a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and political science and a Master’s in social work and public administration with a focus in economic development and planning. Bell has worked as a social worker and public policy professional serving vulnerable communities and solving complex problems for over a decade. She is also a councilwoman in the City of Clarkston, Georgia.

Gnora Mahs
Partnerships Director for Healthy Democracy Healthy People
Gnora Mahs

Gnora Mahs, MPH is the Partnerships Director for Healthy Democracy Healthy People. Gnora grew up in a family filled with organizers and started her professional career as a community organizer after graduating from Ohio Wesleyan University. She strengthened grassroots movements for reproductive health equity and voting rights in Oregon before pursuing her graduate degree at the George Washington University’s Milken Institute School of Public Health.

Previously, Gnora worked at the Alliance for Youth Action as a Director of Network Capacity where she supported youth centered organizing on democracy reform and economic justice across the country. Gnora brings a deep understanding of the voting rights movement and what it takes to build strong community organizing campaigns.

Alongside her professional endeavors, Gnora is pursuing a Doctorate of Public Health at George Washington University and her dissertation research is focused on the relationship between voter participation and access and community health.

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