About Project Vote Smart
Meet Our Staff
Jessica ArrigoniNational Board Chair
Responsible for Vote Smart's National Board. Jessica has a master's in political science from Truman State University and formerly served as the Director of Vote Smart's National Political Awareness Test (now the Political Courage Test).Fun Fact: Lived in Vote Smart's only cabin without running water for two years.
Responsible for fundraising and the integrity of Board-approved policies and standards. A graduate of the University of Arizona, Richard served on the staffs of Congressman Morris K. Udall, Senator Walter F. Mondale, and Senator Daniel P. Moynihan. He is also a former Arizona State Senator and Corporation Commissioner.Fun Fact: Has a world class collection of Daffy Ducks
Kristen VicedominiNational Director
Responsible for day-to-day oversight of all Vote Smart programs, staff, operations, facilities and administration. A graduate of New York University, Kristen previously led the organization's Political Courage Test department and Research department before being named National Director in 2010.Fun Fact: "I was born during a hurricane."
Adelaide KimballSenior Advisor, Founding Board Member
Responsible for Major Giver Development and Media. Adelaide is a graduate of the University of Texas and holds master's degrees in American history and library science from the University of Arizona. She is a former archivist for the Arizona Historical Society and has previously directed Vote Smart's National Political Awareness Test (now the Political Courage Test).Fun Fact: Former Betty Crocker Homemaker of the Year award winner
Jim HarroldOffice Manager, National Internship Coordinator
Responsible for coordinating office procedures, operations, and resources, managing the National Internship Program, and performing research and other tasks as requested by the National Director. Jim received his bachelors in political science from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, and previously interned with Vote Smart in 2011.Fun Fact: "My favorite writers are Nietzsche, Tolkien, Plato, and Orwell."
Development and Communications
Rachel HartmanDevelopment, Communications Director
Responsible for leading the Development and Communications Department which oversees all of the organization's fundraising and communication strategies. Originally from Collinsville, Il. and a graduate of Elmhurst College, Rachel joined the Project Vote Smart as staff immediately following her internship with the organization.Fun Fact: "I've attempted to play nearly every sport I've ever watched, including curling."
Hannah StewartDevelopment, Communications Associate
Responsible for supporting membership services, assisting with the coordination of outreach programs, message development and dissemination, and supervising the organization's Member Volunteer program and Ambassador program. Hannah received her master's in political science from the University of Glasgow, UK, and previously assisted with the communication efforts of the National Economic and Social Rights Initiative and Still Serving Veterans.Fun Fact: "I canoed down the Zambezi river once."
Eric HendersonDevelopment Associate
Responsible for supporting membership services, assisting with the coordination of new and current outreach programs, and interfacing with public information and material requests. Eric is a graduate of the University of Tennessee and received his master's in psychology from the University of Western Georgia.Fun Fact: "I have what is called Sidonglobophobia, or the fear of touching cotton balls."
Great Divide Ranch Headquarters
Steve JohnsonRanch Maintenance Director
Responsible for building and equipment maintenance operation at our headquarters on the Great Divide Ranch. Originally from Whitefish, Mont., Steve brings with him 30 years of experience in the construction industry.Fun Fact: "I have an associates degree in photojournalism, and I am a 3rd generation photographer."
Clinton AdamsInformation Technology Director
Responsible for the IT Department and the effective use of technology at Project Vote Smart. Clinton joined the organization in 2001.Fun Fact: "I prefer to stand while working."
Mike ShultzInformation Technology Assistant
Responsible for web development, user support, and system administration. Mike has been with Project Vote Smart since 2007.Fun Fact: "I once pet a sting ray."
Ed CaseyInformation Technology Assistant
Responsible for user support, and system administration. Ed is a native of Philipsburg, Montana who graduated from Montana Tech University where he studied Information Technology.
Legislative Research (Key Votes)
Darren McDivittLegislative Research Director
Responsible for leading the Legislative Research department. This department is responsible for tracking major legislation in multiple states in addition to writing and revising comprehensive summaries of legislation. He previously worked as the National Internship Coordinator and director of the Political Courage Test Department for Project Vote Smart. Darren is a Tucson, Arizona native who received his bachelor's in political science from Truman State University.Fun Fact: "I am the only person in my family to not play a musical instrument."
Natasha KingLegislative Research Associate
Responsible for tracking major legislation in multiple states in addition to writing and revising comprehensive summaries of legislation. She also serves as the primary intern coordinator for the UT office. Natasha received her bachelor’s in government and history from the University of Texas at Austin, and joined as staff following her internship with the organization in 2011.Fun Fact: "I firmly believe that the ultimate answer is 42."
Dilip KanugaLegislative Research Associate
Responsible for tracking major legislation in multiple states in addition to writing and revising comprehensive summaries of legislation. Dilip graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with degrees in Government & History in May 2013. He previously worked at the Texas House of Representatives, the Jamail Center for Legal Research at the UT Law Library, and as an undergraduate research fellow in the J.J. Pickle Research Apprenticeship Program.Fun Fact: "Steve Perry once bought me an iPod."
Political Courage Test
Claire BattagliaPolitical Courage Test and Research Associate
Responsible for assisting with the coordination of candidates' issue position research, in addition to distributing and processing submitted Political Courage Tests. The Political Courage Test is the organization's flagship program, measuring candidates' willingness to provide citizens with their positions on key issues each election year. Claire is a native of Billings, MT and received her degree in Political Science in 2010 from Lewis & Clark College.Fun Fact: "I hunted a giraffe, on foot and with a spear, while staying with the Hadza, a hunter-gatherer tribe in Tanzania."
Katy DupreResearch Director
Responsible for leading the Research department which researches and maintains the organization's biographical, campaign finance, public statements, and interest group ratings information on all U.S. elected officials and candidates. Katy received her master's in political science from the University of New Orleans and also studied at the Leysin American School in Switzerland.Fun Fact: "I Cajun and Zydeco dance."
Nick GannResearch Associate
Responsible for the content and accuracy of special interest group ratings and supervising intern work related to current officials' special interest group ratings. Nick is a native of Traverse City, Michigan and attended Kalamazoo College where he studied Political Science and German.Fun Fact: I have ridden a camel and a cow, but never a horse.
Ben RakerResearch Associate
Responsible for leading the data coding project for the Research Department. We are categorizing historical and current data in order to build connections between the different types of data we collect. This will allow a user to view all relevant data, such as special interest group ratings and public statements that are related to a specific category, like crime or taxes. Originally from Brunswick, Maine, Ben is a graduate of Bard College and previously served as in intern with the organization before coming on as a staff member.
Kylie HannasResearch Associate
Responsible for supervising intern work related to current officials' profiles including biographical information, contact information and photos, in addition to other research responsibilities such as ballot measures and assisting with committee membership rosters. Originally from Wenatchee, WA, Kylie received her bachelors degree in Political Science from Eastern Washington University in 2012.Fun Fact: "I was in London during the 2011 riots."
Laura DiamondResearch Associate
Responsible for updating and categorizing public officials' public statements and speeches, in addition to supervising related intern work. Laura also contributes to updating social media content related to public statements and speeches. Originally from Itasca, IL, Laura received her bachelors degree in International and Middle East Studies from University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2012.Fun Fact: "I love to African dance!"
Michael MoweryResearch Associate, Lodge Manager
Responsible for updating public officials' public statements and speeches, in addition to supervising related intern work. Michael also contributes to updating social media content related to public statements and speeches. In addition to his Research Department duties, Michael also co-manages and maintains operations and volunteer life at the Project's Great Divide Ranch headquarters. Michael is originally from University Park, MD and is a graduate of St. John's College, Annapolis where he studied Philosophy and the History of Math and Science.Fun Fact: I'm terrible at keeping secrets.
Sarkis PehaResearch Associate, Lodge Manager
Responsible for supervising intern work related to current officials' profiles including biographical information, contact information and photos, in addition to other research responsibilities such as ballot measures and assisting with committee membership rosters. Sarkis also co-manages and maintains operations and volunteer life at the Project's Great Divide Ranch headquarters. A graduate of Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo with a bachelor's degree in history and international studies, Sarkis previously worked abroad as an English teacher in South America, and also interned with Vote Smart.Fun Fact: "I'm a hitchhiking advocate"