About

Corporate and other entrenched interests devote vast resources to pursuing their policy agendas — resources that grassroots groups and other progressive advocates representing everyday, working Americans often lack. 

Governing for Impact seeks to fill this gap and build progressive power at the state and federal level. Through collaboration with partners, we help make progressive policy priorities a reality by focusing on the nitty gritty details of policy development and implementation.

Many of the proposals on this site focus on how the new administration could unwind the previous administration’s harmful regulatory legacy, but GFI continues to take on new policy projects at all levels of government. If your organization would like to partner on an initiative, please reach out.

staff

Rachael Klarman
Executive Director
Will Dobbs-Allsopp
Legal Policy Analyst
Wes Gobar
Project Coordinator
Lila Greenwood Operations Director

Sam Fulwood III
Board Chair

Journalist, public policy analyst and author Sam Fulwood III is the Dean of the School of Communication at American University in Washington, D.C. His area of expertise and scholarship addresses key issues including media influences on American life; race relations; data-driven journalism; popular culture; and the intersection of media, technology, and democracy.

During a nearly three-decade career in popular and mass media, Fulwood reported and edited for a succession of U.S. newspapers, and in a variety of other communication forms, including television, radio, magazines and online/social media. From 2009 to 2020, he served as a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, where he was the founder and director of the Leadership Institute, a program that advanced people of color and other underrepresented groups in the nation’s public policy process. In early 2021, he left CAP, as vice president for race and equity, to begin his tenure at American University. 

As a journalist, Fulwood was a metro columnist at Cleveland’s The Plain Dealer; a national correspondent in the Washington, D.C., bureau of the Los Angeles Times, where he contributed to the newspapers’ 1995 Pulitzer Prize for coverage of rioting in Los Angeles; an assistant city editor, business reporter, editorial writer and Johannesburg, South Africa bureau correspondent for the Baltimore Sun; and a police, sports and business reporter for his hometown newspaper, The Charlotte Observer.

Ilyse Hogue

Ilyse Hogue is a fierce advocate for justice and a leader, innovator and coalition builder across American and global progressive movements. As Purpose’s President, Ilyse supports the global team of passionate changemakers and steers strategic planning and development. A trained ecologist, she approaches social change from a systems perspective, looking to identify gaps and points of leverage at which to intervene and proactively anticipating trends where Purpose can apply knowledge and capacity to address emerging threats.

Ilyse, who has spent over a quarter century waging fights on behalf of humanity and our planet, most recently served in an eight-year tenure as president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, during which she helped transform the legacy organization into a modern-day organizing and political powerhouse. Under her leadership, NARAL tripled its membership, staff and annual budget in service advancing state and federal legislation to protect and expand abortion access, and fighting an unprecedented wave of abortion bans at the state level. She helped to position reproductive freedom as a central tenet of progressive politics and to engage organizations cross-movement in support of the full spectrum of reproductive freedoms being fundamental human rights. In doing this, they achieved what was said to be impossible: engaging the private sector in the fight to protect abortion access.

In 2016, Ilyse made history when she became the first speaker to share her abortion story at the Democratic National Convention. In 2020, she co-authored a best-selling book, The Lie That Binds, with former NARAL Research Director Ellie Langford on the history of the radical right, its authoritarian aims, and its reliance on white supremacy, misogyny and disinformation. Her commentary has been featured in The Washington Post, HuffPost, The Nation, Cosmopolitan, and ELLE. She is a frequent guest in the media, appearing as a progressive pundit on MSNBC, CNN, and NPR. She also spoke to popular New York Times podcast The Daily about the interlocking fights against dissolution of democracy, undercutting reproductive freedom and justice and disinformation.

Prior to her work for NARAL, Ilyse worked for MoveOn.org, Greenpeace, Rainforest Action Network, Media Matters for America, and the Friends of Democracy PAC. She holds a BA from Vassar College, an MS from the University of Michigan, and was named as one of the 10 Most Powerful Women in Washington DC by Elle Magazine. She currently serves on the boards of Demand Justice, a court reform organization, and Governing for Impact.

When not at work, Ilyse can be found spending time with her husband, six-year-old twins, and two dogs Ranger Rooster and Little Yellin. She’s an avid hiker, biker, and home cook, and an aspiring gardener.

Tom Perriello

Tom Perriello is executive director of Open Society-U.S., which supports efforts to advance equality, fairness, and justice with a focus on marginalized communities in the United States. Perriello has dedicated his career to organizations and campaigns fighting injustice, climate change, economic inequality, and crimes against humanity. Prior to joining Open Society, Perriello served as CEO of the Center for American Progress Action, a cofounder of Avaaz.org and FaithfulAmerica.org, and an advisor to the Reverend James Forbes’ Prophetic Justice Principles and the International Center for Transitional Justice.

As a member of Congress (VA-05), Perriello supported landmark legislation, including the Affordable Care Act, the DREAM Act, and climate and stimulus legislation. In his 2017 campaign for Virginia governor, he advanced robust policies for addressing the racial wealth gap, reproductive health, resurgent monopolies, and corruption. He also served in the Obama Administration as special representative for the Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review and as U.S. special envoy to the African Great Lakes Region. Perriello has taught at the University of Sierra Leone and the University of Virginia School of Law on human rights and transitional justice.

Jess Morales Rocketto

Jess Morales Rocketto is the Civic Engagement Director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance and the Executive Director of Care in Action, where she spearheads advocacy and electoral campaigns for the 2.5 million domestic workers in this country. She is the Co-Chair of the Families Belong Together Coalition, the campaign to end family separation and detention, and a co-founder of Supermajority, a new women’s political action group. Jess is an alumna of Hillary for America, the AFL-CIO, Obama for America, and the Democratic National Committee. In 2019, Jess was honored in the first TIME 100 Next cohort, a list of rising stars who are shaping the future.

Rachael Klarman
Executive Director

Rachael is the Executive Director of Governing for Impact. Prior to joining GFI, she was a legal policy analyst at Democracy Forward, where she identified and developed litigation challenging the Trump Administration’s actions regarding health care, labor and education. She has worked on a number of electoral and issue campaigns, including as Deputy Chief of Staff on Tom Perriello’s gubernatorial campaign and as the National Director of Young American Outreach at Enroll America. Rachael is a native of Charlottesville, Virginia, and holds a J.D. cum laude from Harvard Law School and a B.A. in History from the University of Virginia.

Will Dobbs-Allsopp
Legal Policy Analyst

Will helps develop regulatory proposals that build power for workers, voters, and the public at-large. He previously worked as a political and policy reporter covering Congress for Morning Consult, and has contributed to projects at the Brennan Center for Justice, Protect Democracy, the Center for Health Law & Policy Innovation, and the Harvard Labor & Worklife Program. Will is a graduate of Harvard Law School and Washington University in St. Louis.

Wes Gobar
Project Coordinator

Wes Gobar is a part-time program coordinator at Governing for Impact with a portfolio focused on criminal justice reform. Wes also works in a full-time capacity as the coalitions lead for Evergreen Action and is a co-founder of the BlackOak Collective. He previously served as a confidential assistant and executive aide to Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring. Wes is a native of Fredericksburg, Virginia and a 2018 graduate of the University of Virginia, where he studied History and Government. His interest in advocacy began in Charlottesville as a racial justice student organizer at UVA. Wes’s writing has been published in Vox and the Washington Post.

Lila Greenwood
Operations Director 

Lila is the Operations Director at Governing for Impact. Prior to GFI, Lila worked at Arabella Advisors, where she served on a portfolio of fiscally sponsored nonprofit clients in issue areas ranging from women’s advocacy and education reform to global health initiatives. Lila graduated from Franklin and Marshall College with a degree in Spanish and a focus on social justice policy.