Amidst a huge surge in membership and citizen engagement, today Common Cause announced the addition three new development team members and the move of Rey López-Calderón to the post of Interim Vice President of Development from his role as Director of State Organizational Development. The moves come at a time when Americans are exhibiting a growing concern with the health of American democracy as a result are turning to Common Cause to lead in the struggle to hold power accountable. The organization is seeing unprecedented growth in its membership – surging to 750,000 up from just 450,000 a year ago.
The new development team members come to Common Cause from a variety of backgrounds ranging from government watchdogs groups to political campaigns. LaShanda Jackson and Grant Hallmark join Common Cause as Engagement & Fundraising Specialists and Max Wolfson comes aboard as the organization’s Development Manager.
“In this moment, when many Americans feel that our democracy is under siege, people are eager to join the fight to strengthen democracy,” said Karen Hobert Flynn, Common Cause president. “The talents and varied backgrounds of these new members of our team allow us to meet growing demands as a new generation of Americans discovers that we the people decide our future together. All Americans, regardless of background, want a voice and a vote in deciding our families’ future and we want a government that serves all the people. We know politics and government is about more than who wins or loses, so people are paying more attention to how we select our leaders and how they operate in office.”
More detailed bios of the new development team members follows below.
- Rey López-Calderón is Interim Vice President of Development for Common Cause. López-Calderón’s career as an activist started with work as a volunteer organizer for the United Farm Workers of America in Orange County, CA and has since worked for over 20 years in faith, labor, education, political organizing, and fundraising. He has helped found and raise money for several organizations in Illinois including the Academy for Urban School Leadership, Latino Union, Alliance of the Southeast. He was the re-launch director for Common Cause in Illinois where he launched one of Common Cause’s two flagship fundraising galas. Rey currently manages several donors and one of our six-figure regional grants. He is an alumni award winner from The University of Chicago, where he was graduated with general honors. He also has a Juris Doctor from Depaul College of Law.
- LaShanda Jackson is an Engagement & Fundraising Specialist. She most recently worked as a Manager of Gift Accounting at the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund where she oversaw financial management of an $80 million capital campaign to build the first-ever law enforcement museum. Prior to that, LaShanda cultivated and provided stewardship for members and major donors as the Membership and Major Gifts Coordinator at the Public Justice Foundation. She began her nonprofit career with the Library of Congress, primarily raising capital campaign funds for the Capital Visitors Center and sponsorship funding for the National Book Festival. LaShanda holds a Master of Business Administration and a Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies from the University of Maryland.
- Grant Hallmark is Engagement & Fundraising Specialist. He is a master political fundraiser. Before joining Common Cause, Grant raised money and managed dozens of political and issue-focused campaigns over the past seven years. Most recently, Grant managed the fundraising operation of the Foster Campbell for US Senate campaign. Grant received his Bachelors from Birmingham Southern College in 2008 with a major in Political Science and a minor in History.
- Max Wolfson is Common Cause’s incoming Development Manager. Prior to joining Common Cause, Max was Development & Planned Giving Coordinator for People For the American Way, managing major donor relationships, creating proposals for foundations and partner groups, and spearheading PFAW’s political giving efforts, especially around the Latinos Vote! campaign. He also served as the lead and point of contact on the organization’s planned giving outreach and to its legacy society. Prior to joining PFAW, Max worked in recruitment and marketing for the American Society of Clinical Oncology, for the George Mason University Office of Admissions, and as an Organizing Fellow with Obama For America in 2008. Max received his Bachelors from George Mason in 2011, with a major in Government & International Politics, and minors in History and Religious Studies.