Announcement: We Unveiled Our New Politics Leadership Council Members

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Today, we unveiled the New Politics Leadership Council, a board of advisors and public champions consisting of some of the foremost military, national service, and political leaders in America who understand the power of service and why it is key to transforming our politics.

Esteemed members of the New Politics Leadership Council are: 

  • Elisa Basnight, SVP at the American Red Cross, former senior leader at the U.S. Departments of Veterans Affairs and Treasury, and West Point graduate;

  • Matthew Dowd, former Chief Strategist to President George W. Bush, ABC News Chief Political Analyst, and founder of Country Over Party;

  • David Gergen, an advisor to four U.S. presidents, CNN political commentator, Director at the Harvard Kennedy School Center for Public Leadership, and Navy veteran;

  • Colonel Rob Gordon III (ret.), former national service executive and senior Pentagon appointee, Army veteran and West Point graduate, a longtime leader in the government, military, academic, nonprofit and high tech sectors;

  • Alan Khazei, co-founder of City Year and current CEO and Co-Founder of Democracy Entrepreneurs; 

  • Wendy Kopp, the founder of Teach for America and co-founder and CEO of Teach for All;

  • Rosabeth Moss Kanter, a Harvard Business School professor and Director and Chair of the Harvard Advanced Leadership Initiative;

  • Michelle Nunn, President and CEO of CARE USA, former CEO of Points of Light, and former candidate for U.S Senate in Georgia;

  • Billy Shore, Founder and Executive Chairman of Share Our Strength; and

  • Dorothy Stoneman, Founder and former CEO of Youthbuild.

The New Politics Leadership Council will serve as advisors and public champions of our mission to revitalize our democracy. They believe the candidates we endorse are the pre-eminent leaders in the political sector, who have proven track records of putting country over party and leading with courage, integrity, and empathy.

Emily had this to say about the Leadership Council: “The 2018 elections proved that voters desperately want candidates who are values-driven and steeped in service — leaders who know how to put country over party and bring people together to solve tough problems. Each of our Leadership Council members is a leader in the service or political arena and we are honored to work alongside them on our mission to revitalize our democracy by recruiting, training, and supporting a new generation of servant leaders in our politics.” 


The Council Members chimed in as well:

"I had the privilege of serving with some of America’s best leaders during my time in the military,” said Basnight. “We’re taught from day one that no matter where you’re from or what your perspective, we’re all on the same team and serving the same mission. We need that kind of leadership in politics, and I’m proud to serve on the Leadership Council to advise New Politics as they work every day to elect a new generation of leaders on both sides of the aisle who put service first."

“The status quo isn’t cutting it anymore, and it hasn’t for a long time,” said Dowd. “But the candidates New Politics supports give me hope for a politics that puts service over self, country over party, and represents the best of our country once again.”

“In the past few years since it burst upon the scene, New Politics has become a significant new force in identifying and preparing a rising generation of military veterans, social entrepreneurs and others for entry into American politics,” said Gergen. “I am proud to serve on the New Politics Leadership Council and to support Emily Cherniack and her team as they undertake a vital mission: engaging more servant leaders who will revitalize our democracy.”

“New Politics is doing the important work to make sure our Veterans can lead the political transformation our politics needs, and I am proud to serve that mission as well,” said Gordon. “We need more leaders who know what it means to put country over party.”


“It's time to end cynicism about politics and see it for what it can be: service to the public,” said Kanter. “By supporting our country’s transformational servant leaders to get into politics and win, New Politics is doing the critical work to bring service values back to politics and get our democracy working again.”

"I know that veterans and national service alumni have the proven leadership skills necessary to put country over party and fix our broken politics,” said Khazei. “I am proud to support New Politics and serve the New Politics Leadership Council on the mission to engage more servant leaders to revitalize our democracy."

“People who have experience tackling the inequities in our country through teaching and service learn important lessons about the challenges facing our communities and what it will take to solve them,” said Kopp. “New Politics is doing the critical work to ensure service leaders bring their leadership skills and problem-solving know-how to our political system, where too many politicians have no idea how the decisions they make affect neighborhoods.”

“In every corner of our country there are Americans serving our communities and improving people’s lives,” said Nunn. “I’ve spent my life around both politics and national service, and the service leaders New Politics are supporting can be transformational for our country.”

“Nothing teaches you how to solve the problems communities face like service, and our political system right now desperately needs leaders, regardless of political party, who have served before and have what it takes to get big things done,” said Shore. “The service world is a training ground for some of our nation’s best leaders, and I’m proud of the way New Politics inspires them to engage in the political arena.”

“Service can be a transformational experience for all people — it teaches you how to listen, lead, and work together with people from different backgrounds. It also provides profound satisfaction and a sense of purpose in life,” says Stoneman. “I’m inspired by New Politics’ work because we need people who are motivated by the deepest desire to serve their communities, nation, and humanity as a whole to lift up our politics and renew trust in our democracy.”