Meet the Staff
Siobhan "Sam" Bennett, President/CEO
Siobhan “Sam” Bennett has served as the President and CEO of the Women’s Campaign Fund (WCF), The She Should Run Foundation, and WCF PAC since March 2009. Under Sam’s leadership, WCF and She Should Run's combined budget has more than doubled and the nonpartisan organization’s programmatic reach has expanded to every state in the country. Sam also engineered She Should Run’s ground-breaking “Name It. Change It.” initiative to combat sexist attacks against female candidates by the media and fostered collaboration with many organizations; such as, White House Project, National Organization for Women, Women's Media Center, Feminist Majority, Running Start, and WUFPAC. Dedicated to dramatically increasing the number of women in elected office who support reproductive health choices for all, WCF and She Should Run have been featured in national newspapers, including USA Today, Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, US News & World Report, Newsweek, and other top publications.
Learn more about Sam here.
Yelena Bakaleva, Chief Operating Officer
As the Chief Operating Officer, Yelena provides day-to-day business leadership and oversees the full spectrum of financial and operational management for all three organizations (WCF, WCF PAC, and She Should Run). This includes financial management and analysis, budgeting, audit and accounting oversight, operational management, HR, IT infrastructure, organizational development and performance management, in addition to playing a key role in strategic planning and board relations. Yelena has over 18 years of the results-driven financial and operational management expertise and organizational performance improvement experience in the public and private sectors and academia, both in the U.S. and abroad. Most recently, she served as Director of Finance and Operations for the American Immigration Council. She also worked with the international sports and cultural icon Martina Navratilova, as Director of Strategic Alliances for her two companies, and has over eight years of progressive positions in management, finance, and operations with the international division of AARP. Yelena holds MBA in Corporate Finance from the Johns Hopkins University and Master of Science in Applied Mathematics from Russia.
Erin Cutraro, Vice President
As the Managing Vice President, Erin is responsible for staff management, for aligning the strategic direction of programs and research, and for the public image of the organization. Before joining She Should Run, Erin designed and implemented a variety of strategic programs for companies, campaigns and organizations that traverse the public policy, non-profit and financial business arenas. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Education from the University of Missouri and a master’s degree in Communication from Saint Louis University.
Linda Paulson, Vice President of Development
Linda Paulson is the Vice President for Development for Women’s Campaign Fund, She Should Run and WCF PAC. She is responsible for developing and executing strategies to grow the revenue of all three organizations, with a focus on securing foundation and corporate funding for She Should Run and managing WCF’s signature events. Previously, Linda was the Director of Strategic Markets for United Way Worldwide. Linda became one of the nation’s premiere experts in women’s philanthropy. Her work with United Way Women’s Leadership Councils led them to grow to more than 55,000 members in 135 communities across the nation, and have raised nearly than $ 1 billion over their history. Previously Linda was Account Manager in, then, United Way of America’s National Corporate Leadership Program and she was Director of 2-1-1 at United Way of America. Linda has also worked with the Points of Light Foundation and local United Ways in Washington, DC and in Miami, FL. Linda began her career as a VISTA Volunteer working with United Way in Miami, FL to help low-income families and communities recover from the devastating effects of Hurricane Andrew. Linda earned her Bachelor’s degree from Michigan State University and holds a Master’s degree in Public Policy Analysis from the George Washington University.
Clare Bresnahan, Programs Director
As Programs Director, Clare oversees the operations, marketing, and outreach for She Should Run programs, including national and local partnerships. She also manages the WCF PAC endorsement application process and WCF’s premier Fellowship Program. She comes to WCF/SSR from the Girl Scouts of the USA, where she served as the Public Policy and Advocacy Associate for their government relations office. Clare led GSUSA’s legislative and public affairs strategies for promoting healthy media images and oversaw grassroots and national partnerships elevating Girl Scouts’ advocacy efforts. Clare graduated from American University with B.A. in Communications, Law, Economics, and Government (C.L.E.G.), and is a graduate of the American University Women and Politics Institute’s WeLEAD bipartisan leadership training program.
Juan Garcia-Thomas, Communications Director
Juan is responsible for overseeing all aspects of She Should Run's communication strategy. Juan is a graduate of the California Institute of Technology (Caltech). An engineer by training, Juan worked for a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, the District of Columbia's Office of the State Superintendent of Education, and the National LGBT Bar Association before joining the team in February 2011.
Kimberly Koops-Wrabek, Special Programs Manager
Kimberly is a member of the development team and an alumna of the WCF Fellowship program. She originally hails from the Oregon Coast and holds a B.A. in Politics and Government from Pacific University. Kimberly provides support to the development department in many aspects of fundraising, including major donor outreach and planning key aspects of the organization’s largest event, Parties of Your Choice. Before coming to WCF, Kimberly worked on the Hill as a legislative intern for Senator Merkley and as a Union Organizer with SEIU.
Tessa Ross, Communications Associate
Tessa just finished up her Bachelor’s degree in Political Science at California State University, Fullerton. Throughout her college career, she has volunteered much of her time to the causes of social justice and equality, taking active roles in organizations such as Stop Hunger Now, Providence Community Services, and the Queer Straight Alliance. Her desire to fight for women’s rights was sparked by taking Gender Studies courses, and she realized that working with WCF was an opportune way to combine her Political Science background with her passion for female equality.
With the power of Podio, our online CRM system, our team can effectively work together from anywhere, to escape email overload, alleviate document chaos and much more. Get structured with Podio's easily modified workspaces and apps, so you and your team can work the way you want to.