Speaker Biographies

Transformative Investments in Workers, Communities, and Job Quality

 

Melissa Boteach: Vice President for Income Security and Child Care/Early Learning, National Women’s Law Center. 

Melissa oversees NWLC’s advocacy, policy, and public education strategies to ensure that all women and families have the income and supports they need to thrive. Prior to joining NWLC, Melissa spent nearly a decade at Center for American Progress (CAP), where led the Poverty to Prosperity Program and she previously, she worked at The Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA), where she led interfaith antipoverty campaigns. She has testified before Congress and frequently serves as a media spokesperson on issues relating to economic opportunity. 

 

Kitty Richards: Director of State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds, U.S. Treasury Office of Recovery Programs. 

Kitty has more than a decade of experience in tax and fiscal policy research, policymaking, and advocacy at both the federal and local level. She has previously worked at several think-tanks, including Groundwork Collaborative, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP), and the Center for American Progress (CAP). She has served as a staffer on Capitol Hill and in the White House, including as Economic Policy Advisor to Vice President Joseph R. Biden. She also spent two years as Chief of Staff to DC Councilmember Elissa Silverman, managing the day to day work of the Councilmember’s team and working on a wide range of issues including tax and fiscal policy, workforce development, and the Universal Paid Leave Act. 

Kitty received her bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Reed College, and her J.D. from New York University School of Law, as part of the Leadership Program in Tax Law and Fiscal Policy. 

 

Branden Snyder: Executive Director, Detroit Action 

Branden Snyder is the Executive Director of Detroit Action, a community-based organization fighting for political power and economic justice for working class Black and Brown Michiganders. 

Born and raised on Detroit’s East Side to a working-class union family, Branden has been involved in faith, electoral and community organizing projects throughout the United States for over 10 years. Previously, Branden was the Deputy Organizing Director in charge of Youth Voting for the Hillary For Michigan 2016 presidential campaign, the Deputy Campaign Manager for the groundbreaking 2017 Gilchrist for Detroit City Clerk campaign, as well as the Statewide Director of Organizing for Michigan United. Branden is a graduate of the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor with a B.A. in Political Science and Afro-American studies and a Master’s Degree in Public Policy from the Gerald R. Ford School for Public Policy. 

 

Amy Sugimori: Director of Policy and Legislation, 32BJ SEIU. 

With 175,000 members throughout 11 states and Washington, DC, 32BJ is the largest property service workers union in the country. 32BJ members work in building services, keeping the offices, apartments, schools and other major buildings in our states clean, secure and operating smoothly. Prior to joining 32BJ, among other things, Amy was executive director of La Fuente, a project that engages union members in civic participation in their communities as well as an attorney with the National Employment Law Project.