Board & Advisers


Whitney Hatch, Chair

Whitney Hatch

Fmr. Regional Director for New England, Trust for Public Land; Fmr. Vice President of Regulatory Affairs, GTE Corporation

If you go back to the simple language of our founding documents, ‘one person, one vote,’ and ‘the consent of the governed,’ we are so far from that today. We need to get back to those core principles, and the only way to get at it is to try to build something much bigger and inclusive than has ever been built before, something that has the wherewithal to stick. That is Issue One’s aim.”

David Gerson, Secretary

David Gerson

Founder and President, Beechwood Property Holdings; Fmr. Partner, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP

Throughout my business and legal career, I’ve seen firsthand the way that money amplifies political speech and influence to the point where it drowns out every other form of debate and every other interest; the marketplace of ideas is being overwhelmed and obliterated by the idea of the marketplace.  Issue One’s mission is my passion, to restore our democracy so that our society works for the benefit of everyone.”

Barbara Brenner Buder, Treasurer

Fmr. CFO, San Francisco Theological Seminary, Fmr. Executive Vice President, BankAmerica Corp, Corporate Strategy & Development

The Pandemic, climate change, wealth inequality; all have had profound impacts on our economy, our democracy, and civil society. To meet these challenges, we must have government that works for the welfare of all Americans. Issue One’s work across party lines is crucial to strengthening our democracy, reducing the influence of big money in politics, and electing officials who represent the interests of all Americans. A strong democracy is key to good government.

Diana Aviv

President, Diana Aviv Consultants: Leadership, Strategy, Social Innovation; Fmr. CEO, Feeding America

Many more Americans would participate in our political process and institutions if they believed the system was fair, accessible and accountable. They want our leaders to work together to achieve better outcomes for us all.”

Donna Brazile

Veteran Political Strategist; Author; Adjunct Professor; and fmr. Interim Chair, DNC

Money is necessary, but not often available to all qualified candidates.

Bill Burgess

Bill Burgess

General Partner, North Bridge Venture Partners

The influence of money in politics and government is undermining faith in our democracy. Issue One understands that there is no silver bullet for the problem, and that different political climates call for different strategies. This agility allows Issue One to move constantly in the direction of success.”

Carlos Curbelo

Member of Congress 2015 – 2019 (R-FL); Co-founder and fmr. co-chair of the Climate Solutions Caucus; Distinguished visiting fellow at Columbia’s Center on Global Energy Policy; Founder of Vocero, LLC

A better government that is more representative of the American public is one in which policymakers are empowered to make decisions and build relationships that allow them to effectively serve the best interests of the country, states, and communities. In order to achieve this we must enact strong reforms to our campaign finance system that require full transparency and that will reduce the political fundraising burden on public officials.”

Katie Fahey

Executive Director, The People; Founder and fmr. Executive Director, Voters Not Politicians

We need to change the narrative we often times hear: ‘we are too divided and too polarized to work together.’ To do that means bringing folks together and allowing them to realize there are things we can all agree on. Positive change can come directly from the people, and voters across the political spectrum can reform the system, instead of settling for the status quo.”

Richard Gephardt

Member of Congress 1977- 2005 (D-MO); House Majority Leader 1989-1995; House Minority Leader 1995-2003; President and CEO of Gephardt Government Affairs

Participation in the democratic process is a treasure which was provided to the American people from our nation’s founding fathers. We need to ensure those who have elected us in the past and present, and will elect others in the future, preserve our democracy and the political process that was given to us over two hundred and forty years ago.”

Dan Glickman

Dan GlickmanMember of Congress, 1977-1995 (D-KS); U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, 1995-2001;  Fmr. Director, Institute of Politics at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government; Fmr. Chairman and CEO, Motion Picture Association of America; Fmr. Executive Director, Aspen Institute Congressional Program; Senior Counselor, International Advisory Council Chair, APCO Worldwide; Senior Fellow, Bipartisan Policy Center; Member, ReFormers Caucus

Today, successful politicians are judged and rewarded more for how well they raise money than for how intelligent, dedicated or effective they are as legislators. It is time for this culture to change.”

Emil Hill

Executive Vice President, Public Affairs Powell Tate| Weber Shandwick

The proliferation of money into politics cannot insure the creation, or maintenance of laws that sustain every American’s rights to freedom,  justice, and equality.

J.B. Lyon

J.B. Lyon

Co-director, Rebuild Congress Initiative; Managing Director, Mount Independence Investments; Fmr. Managing Director, ZBI Ventures; Fmr. General Partner, Vision Media Investors; Fmr. Vice President for Business Development and Operations, Staples, Inc.

We founded Issue One with the goal of bringing together all Americans, regardless of party affiliation, to solve the greatest threat to the United States — the self-destruction of our democracy. Representative government has nearly disappeared, but I am confident that we can restore our democracy so that it is truly of, by and for the American people.”

Steven Olikara

Founder and President, Millennial Action Project

Fixing our democracy is the calling of our time. We must create better incentives for honest governing, consensus-building, and younger, more diverse leaders to run for office—but the current money in politics system disincentivizes all three. Issue One is answering the call to action with an extraordinary cross-partisan focus to change how money influences our political system.”

Mike Peabody

Mike PeabodyPresident, Peabody Corporation; Founder, Friends of Choice in Urban Schools (FOCUS)

Campaign costs are out of control. Candidates are forced to reach outside of their districts to special interests, and spend more than half their time doing so. Thus entrapped, they can no longer represent their voters. This has undermined our democracy and has become, for me, Issue One.”

Tom Ridge

Tom RidgeMember of Congress, 1983-1995 (R-PA); Governor, 1995-2001 (R-PA); Secretary of Homeland Security; Founder and Chairman of Ridge Global; Member, ReFormers Caucus

We elect leaders to place country above party, address the most critical issues plaguing the nation and prevent future crisis from taking root. But Washington needs to face the facts: The political system itself is broken.

Miti Sathe

Executive Director and Founder, Square One Politics; Fmr. Director of Office of Public Engagement, The White House

Last year, on average our Congressional Candidates spent $3.6 million on their races. This means candidates are spending more and more time fundraising and less time talking to voters. This system has to change otherwise we will have elected officials who only represent the interests of the elite and not their constituents. Issue One is doing the work and making the investments to make sure that we create a better more fair election system.

Ian Simmons

President, Foundation for Civic Leadership; Co-founder, ActBlue

The issue of money in politics, the greatest challenge of our time, requires all hands on deck. Issue One is recruiting the new allies we need to move practical solutions from ideas to reality. We are building a broad coalition to implement real, lasting change.”

Peter Staple

Fmr. President and CEO of Corium, Inc. and BioSeek, Inc.; Fmr. Executive Vice President, Chief Administrative Officer, and General Counsel of ALZA Corporation

The influence of money in politics is corrosive. In my career in healthcare and business, I have seen that it distorts fact-based decision-making. It dominates the attention and time of our elected representatives. It results in polarization and distrust among voters. Issue One is pursuing an inclusive, crosspartisan strategy to re-establish our common ground, address the dysfunction, and allow our democracy to succeed.

Patrick Toussaint

Executive Director, HR Strategy at JPMorgan Chase; Co-Founder, Hudson County Progressive Alliance

For our democracy to thrive, we need bold solutions to correct the systems that discourage participation. Whether it’s the way we administer our elections, how we bridge the partisan divide, or how we protect against the distorting influence of money in politics, Issue One has been a leader in developing and driving those solutions.

Linda Jordan Willard

Fmr. Sr. Policy Adviser, TCH Group, LLC; Fmr. Attorney, Sullivan & Worcester and Verner Liipfert;  Fmr. Counsel, U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works

Americans today have little trust in government.  Many politicians seem to prioritize party and money over those they represent.  Issue One seeks to rid our broken political system of outside influences that undermine democracy, allowing our leaders to put voters first.”

Issue One is proud to have 100% donor participation from our Board.

Advisory Board

Issue One recruits nationally-renowned individuals from across the political spectrum to its bipartisan Advisory Board. The Advisory Board is co-chaired by Senators Bill Bradley (D-NJ) and Alan Simpson (R-WY), and is home to American leaders from the worlds of politics, business, philanthropy and entertainment. Members know from their experience the price we all pay for a dysfunctional democracy and pledge to raise their voices, recruit their peers and activate their networks to advocate for solutions we can implement now in order to fix our broken political system. Through the Advisory Board, reformers have access to prominent individuals from all over the country who can lend their names, voices and expertise to the fight for significant victories.



Senator (D-NJ 1979-1997); Managing Director, Allen & Company LLC; Olympian; NBA Hall of Famer; Best-Selling Author


Senator (R-WY 1979-1997); Senate Republican Whip (1985-1995); Chairperson, National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform (2010)



Chief Operating Officer, Export-Import Bank (1994-1999); State Representative, Connecticut House (1977-1987)


U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security (2005-2009); Judge, U.S. 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals (2003-2005); Assistant U.S. Attorney General (2001-2003); U.S. Attorney for the District of NJ (1990-1994)


U.S. Army General (Ret.); NATO Supreme Allied Commander, Europe (1997-2000); CEO, Wesley K. Clark & Associates




U.S. Senator (1987-2005); U.S. Congressman (1979-1987)


Beneficial Professor of Law, Harvard Law School; U.S. Solicitor General (1985-1989)


Presidential historian and Pulitzer Prize-winning author


Kentucky Secretary of State (2004-2011)



Secretary of Defense (2013-2015); President’s Intelligence Advisory Board (2009-2013); U.S. Senator (1997-2009)


President, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars (2011-2021); U.S. Congresswoman (1993-2011)


President, Leadership Conference on Civil Rights; recipient of the Congressional Black Caucus Chair’s Award and the District of Columbia Bar’s William J. Brennan Award


U.S. Trade Representative (1989-1993); Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (1975-1977); Co-Chair, Council on Foreign Relations; Chairman and CEO, Hills & Company


CEO and Founder, Hollender Sustainable Brands; Co-Founder, Seventh Generation Inc.; Co-Founder, American Sustainable Business Council


Senior Director, Goldman, Sachs & Co.; Chair (2001-2007) and Trustee, Brandeis University


Founding President and CEO, Voto Latino; Contributor, MSNBC

American Author and historian; Pulitzer Prize, National Book Award and Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient



Co-Founder, No Labels; Strategic Advisor to George W. Bush, John McCain, Ann Richards, Charlie Wilson, Lance Armstrong and Bono; Senior Advisor, Hill + Knowlton


Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (1994-1996); U.S. Navy (1962-1996)


Of Counsel, Patterson Belknap


Commissioner (1991-1995) and Chairman (1994), Federal Election Commission; Founding President and General Counsel, Campaign Legal Center; Member, Caplin & Drysdale


U.S. Congresswoman (1993-2009)


Venture Capitalist; Founder, Rock Center for Entrepreneurship, Harvard University; Founder, Rock Center for Corporate Governance, Stanford University


Chairman and CEO, AlleyCorp; Founder and Chairman, Gilt Group; Chairman, The Business Insider; former CEO, DoubleClick


Founder, Chairman and CEO, Panera Bread; Co-Founder, Au Bon Pain Company



Co-Chair, ReFormers Caucus

Tim Roemer was born and raised in South Bend, Indiana and worked his way through college and graduate school, eventually finding his way into public service in Washington, D.C. Tim served in the House of Representatives for 12 years representing Indiana’s 3rd district, and was appointed Ambassador to India from 2009-2011. While in Congress, he founded the New Democratic Coalition, served on the House Intelligence Committee, and worked with Republicans and Democrats to pass legislation on Head Start, AmeriCorps, and critical national security issues. He also served on the 9/11 Commission that recommended and helped pass crucial new security policies into law while building bridges between both parties and the 9/11 families. As Ambassador to India, he expanded the diplomatic outreach program and signed the historic Counterterrorism Cooperation Initiative, and moved the country from being America’s 25th largest trading partner to the 12th. Roemer has been a member of numerous national blue ribbon panels to address issues from nuclear nonproliferation to preserving the U.S. National Park System. Today, he works for APCO Worldwide as executive director and senior counselor. His parents and grandfather worked for the University of Notre Dame, where he would eventually earn advanced degrees  in American government. Tim is married to Sally Johnston Roemer. They have four children and a dog named Hoosier, and in his spare time Tim collects first edition books and overpriced baseball cards.

Co-Chair, ReFormers Caucus

Zach Wamp served in the House of Representatives for 16 years, representing Tennessee’s 3rd district. He served as the ranking member of the Military Construction/Veterans Affairs Subcommittee and prior to that as the ranking member of the Legislative Branch Subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee, which he served on for 14 years. Zach helped establish the Department of Homeland Security and the Tennessee Valley Technology Corridor. He signed discharge petitions and closed the debate on the House floor of the most significant political reform legislation in a generation. He was a regular panelist on The News Hour with Jim Lehrer and has appeared on virtually every major news show and in every major news publication over two decades. Today he chairs the Gospel Music Foundation and is president and owner of Zach Wamp Consulting, a bipartisan consulting and development firm for a wide range of businesses across the country.

Senior Strategic Adviser

Bruce Patton is co-founder and Distinguished Fellow of the Harvard Negotiation Project. He is also co-founder of the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School. In 1984 Patton, Fisher, and three HNP alumni founded Conflict Management, Inc., a negotiation consulting and training firm, and Conflict Management Group (now part of Mercy Corps), a not-for-profit entity that works on conflicts of public concern. In 1997, Patton and four CMI/HNP colleagues founded Vantage Partners, llc, a global consulting firm that helps companies drive business results by improving how they negotiate and manage their most critical internal and external deals and relationships. Patton co-authored, with Professor Roger Fisher and William Ury, the seminal book Getting to YES: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In, which has sold more than 10 million copies, has been translated into more than 35 languages, and which continues to sell more than 3500 copies a week. Patton has worked on and helped to resolve numerous complex, multiparty public conflicts, including suggesting the multiparty process used in the constitutional talks that led to the end of apartheid in South Africa.

Senior Strategic Adviser

Trevor Potter is the founding President and General Counsel of the Campaign Legal Center, a Washington, D.C. based nonprofit which helped successfully defend the McCain-Feingold law in the lower and Supreme Courts. He is one of the country’s best-known and most experienced campaign and election lawyers, and a former Commissioner (1991-1995) and Chairman (1994) of the Federal Election Commission. Trevor has been described by the American Bar Association Journal as “hands-down one of the top lawyers in the country on the delicate intersection of politics, law and money”.  Trevor has been listed as one of Washington’s Best Lawyers by Washingtonian Magazine and was recognized as a “Super Lawyer” by Washington DC Super Lawyers Magazine in 2008. He served as General Counsel to the John McCain 2008 campaign (while on leave of absence from the Legal Center) and also held that position with the McCain 2000 campaign. He has testified before Congress on federal election proposals and campaign finance regulation, and has taught campaign finance law at the University of Virginia School of Law and Oxford University. He is Co-Chair of the Election Law Committee of the American Bar Association’s Administrative Law Section. Trevor is also a member in Caplin & Drysdale’s Washington, D.C. office, where he leads the firm’s Political Activity Law Practice.

Consultant, Rebuild Congress Initiative

Jessica is a senior public affairs professional with more than a decade of experience building consensus around commonsense solutions to complex problems. She previously served as Assistant Staff Director and Counsel for the House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs, where she helped to manage the Republican Committee Chairman’s foreign policy agenda and oversaw the enactment into law of over two dozen bipartisan legislative initiatives.  She is currently an independent consultant providing clients with strategic planning, public policy, and public relations guidance. Jessica holds a J.D. from the George Mason University School of Law and a B.S. from the University of Virginia and is licensed to practice law in Virginia.