Speakers

Young Women Run Houston

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Nancy Bocskor

Director, Center for Women in Politics & Public Policy, Texas Woman's University

Nancy Bocskor, tagged a “Democracy Coach” by a major German newspaper, teaches citizens in the United States and internationally how to communicate with passion to affect change in their communities.

Nancy is the new Director of the Center for Women in Politics & Public Policy at Texas Woman's University in Denton, TX, where she will launch its programs to promote civic engagement and leadership in public service.

The author of “Go Fish: How to Catch (and Keep) Contributors: A Practical Guide to Fundraising,” Nancy Bocskor is an adjunct professor at George Washington University’s Graduate School of Political Management where she taught both online and in-class fundraising courses.

Nancy is on the board for Running Start, an organization that encourages young women to run for office and an advisor for the Veteran's Campaign, a program that encourages Veterans to enter public service. She served on the board of the Women’s Campaign School at Yale for seven years, where she chaired the school’s Curriculum Committee for five years. 

Most recently, Nancy was chosen as “Mentor of the Year” by PLEN (Public Leadership Education Network) for her work advising college women interested in careers in public service. In 2016, she was selected by the Washington Academy of Political Arts & Sciences as one of the "Top 12 Women Changing the Face of Political Communications in Latin America." 

Nancy was the recipient of the 2010 the Distinguished Alumni Award at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio for “her passion to affect change in national and international communities, training and consulting with the nation's and world's political leaders, and commitment to educate others, particularly women, around the world.”

Nancy Bocskor spreads democracy throughout the world…..the lively American travels from one country to the next coaching candidates on how to win elections, especially encouraging women to make it into parliament.

Ashley Dedmon, MPH, CHES

Healthy Living Matters Project Coordinator, Harris County Public Health 

Ashley is currently the Healthy Living Matters Project Coordinator for Harris County Public Health. Healthy Living Matters is a collaborative that mobilizes policy action to curb childhood obesity in Harris County. Prior to joining Harris County Public Health, Ashley served as a Community Outreach Specialist for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas, where she managed corporate partnerships, grants, volunteer efforts, and various community outreach and public health endeavors. She also spent ten-years as a physical education and health education teacher and health curriculum writer in the Texas Public School System.

She is a cancer advocate and public speaker. She is a patient speaker with Myriad Genetics and consultant advocate with Houston Methodist Research Institute: The Center for Immunotherapeutic Transport Oncophysics (CITO) Physical Sciences-Oncology Network (PS-ON), and serves on a myriad of professional workgroups and committees. 

Ashley is on the advisory board for The Women’s Fund of Houston, the Prairie View A&M College of Education, and a member The Greater Houston Women’s Chamber Health Network of the Texas Medical Center and the Greater Houston Black Chamber. She is a member of the Texas Breast Health Collaborative, The National Breast Cancer Coalition, and the Penn Medicine: Basser Center for BRCA Young Leadership Council. She actively volunteers with Susan G. Komen, Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered (FORCE), as a peer navigator, an Ambassador for Got Boobs?, and Ovacome Inc. She serves on the health and wellness committee at her church, The Fountain of Praise, and is a member of the Missouri City-Sugarland Chapter of Jack and Jill of America Inc.

Ashley is a native Houstonian and holds a Bachelor of Science in Community Health, a Master’s Degree in Public Health and is a Certified Health Education Specialist. She is an advocate for all health and wellness efforts. She believes, achieving optimal health is a lifelong process of making healthy choices, and implementing healthy behaviors and practices.

She is the founder and owner of Pink Legacy 50/50, a platform that educates, equips, and empowers individuals who are impacted by or high-risk for breast and ovarian cancer. She the author of “The Big Discovery.” A children’s book that facilitates and guides families through a breast cancer diagnosis.

Her greatest accomplishment is being a wife to her husband, Cameron for five years, and a mother to their daughter.

Ericka Graham

Executive Director, Project 88 Foundation & Freelance Teaching Pastor, Ecclesia Houston

After completing graduate school at Rice University and doing her Capstone under the Hebrew Scholar, Dr. Matthias Henze, Ericka went on to teach English at a low-income high school. In 2014, Ericka left teaching and started Project 88, a NPO that connects underserved students to college advising and career training. Since then, Project 88 has raised almost 1.5 million dollars for students in the city of Houston and beyond. Ericka is also the co-founder at Unitee Values, a values-based t-shirt company that encourages students, teachers, and children to live their 5 core values with intention: kindness, courage, creativity, grit, and friendship. More recently, Ericka went back to seminary to expand her theological imagination at the Iliff School of Theology. She also serves on the advisory board for several non-profits in Houston, and she enjoys yoga, running, preaching, and learning from other pastors, students, and professors.

Lisa Hunt

Rector, St. Stephen's Episcopal Church

Lisa Hunt is the rector of St. Stephen's Episcopal Church in Houston. She serves on the Montrose Tax Increment Redevelopment Board for the City of Houston. She is the mother of 3 adult children and a former member of the Metropolitan Nashville Public School Board.

Abbie Kamin

Candidate for Houston City Council, District C, Abbie Kamin Campaign

Abbie Kamin is a candidate for Houston City Council District C. She serves as the Anti-Defamation League’s (ADL) Associate Regional Director for the Southwest Region, working to combat hate and bigotry while advocating for civil rights issues in our region and beyond. She is graduate with honors from Tulane University and holds a Juris Doctorate, with honors, from American University.

While studying at Tulane, Abbie worked with various organizations, including serving as a student organizer for environmental and coastal restoration efforts. Following graduation, she stayed in New Orleans, working on Mitch Landrieu’s campaign for Mayor and Transition Team and later worked as a paralegal at the law firm of Galloway, Johnson, Tompkins, Burr & Smith. During her time at American University’s Washington College of Law in D.C., she interned on the House Oversight & Government Reform Committee, the Democratic National Committee’s Voting Rights Department, as well as for the Lone Star Project.

Abbie, a native Houstonian, moved back to Texas in 2014 to begin her professional legal career, assisting voters obtain voter photo-ID and became an Associate Attorney at Brazil & Dunn, LLP. The youngest member of the firm, Abbie was involved in a wide range of civil practice areas, including, in particular, voting rights and civil rights suits. Wishing to focus her attention on policy and advocacy issues around the state, Abbie most recently served as the Committee Director for the Texas House Human Services Committee for the 85th Legislative Session. 

Today she focuses on civil rights policy and advocacy issues in our state with the Anti-Defamation League, as well as through other organizations. Serving as the Co-Chair of the Houston Steering Committee for Annie’s List, Abbie supports efforts to elect progressive women to state and local office. In addition to her involvement with Annie's List, Abbie serves on the Mayor's Commission Against Gun Violence, is a Board Member of ROAD-Women, a Member of the Board of Trustees at Emery/Weiner School, and is involved with the Jewish Federation, and Shady Acres Civic Club.

Jannelle Watson

Southwest Lead, Facebook

Jannelle Watson works on Facebook’s Politics and Government Outreach team in Washington, DC where she focuses on helping state and local elected officials build a best in class Facebook presence. Prior to coming to Facebook she worked for Governor Jerry Brown's Office of Business and Economic Development and President Obama's Community Solutions team.