Our Team

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Melissa Grant

President

Melissa has co-run three Democratic headquarters in Los Angeles since 2012. As Chair and Co-manager of the Westside Democratic HQ, she was instrumental in flipping 7 California Congressional districts in 2018. In 2019, she co-founded the Grassroots Democrats HQ and began serving as its President. Melissa has served 5 terms as a Delegate to the California Democratic Party. She served as President of the Pacific Palisades Democratic Club for 7 years and is currently its Vice President for Issues and Endorsements. To earn her living, Melissa is a partner of Capstone Law APC and a class action plaintiff’s attorney, fighting for the rights of workers and consumers.

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Tamara Melzer Levenson

Executive Director

After the 2016 Presidential election, Tamara served for 3 years as Code Blue’s National Phone Bank Coordinator, where she created a remote phone bank system that trained and empowered thousands of volunteers. After working on over 50 elections nationally, she was instrumental in flipping 7 Congressional seats in California when she served as the 2018 Co-Manager and Field Director for the Westside Democratic Headquarters. In 2019 Tamara co-founded the Grassroots Democrats HQ and began serving as our Executive Director. Tamara is an elected Delegate to the California Democratic Party (CDP), Co-Chair of the CDP Organizing Committee and E-Board Member. Her formal training before her political career is in social work and nonprofit management.

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Brian Colker

Chief Financial Officer

Brian Colker is the California Director for Code Blue and was responsible for organizing and overseeing an 11-district field program in the 2018 midterms. He has organized fundraisers for over a dozen Democratic House Candidates and Senators. He was one of the founders of the Westside Democratic HQ.

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Ingrid Van Eckert

Vice President

Ingrid is a long time Democratic activist and volunteer with experience working on dozens of campaigns. She currently also serves as the Vice President of the West LA Democratic Club.

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Davis Han

Senior Strategist

Davis is a co-founder of Grassroots Democrats HQ and served as our Field Director for the 2019-2020 election cycle. He has worked on over 40 local, state, and federal campaigns nationwide. In 2022, he managed campaigns for LA County Supervisor and California State Senate, and also worked as a consultant for various successful city council campaigns, advising on field, communications, direct mail, and fundraising. Davis is also a California State Senate staffer, California Democratic Party delegate, and Vice President of Westside Young Dems. He has a B.A. in political science and public policy from the University of Southern California.

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Mana Shooshtari

Executive Strategist

Mana joined the HQ as a fellow in 2020 and worked her way up the ladder, eventually becoming the Field and Communications Director for the 2021-22 Election Cycle, where the HQ contacted over 11 million voters across the country. She started organizing as a high school student in Stockton, CA on issues surrounding gun violence prevention and intersectional feminism. She now serves as a Congressional staffer, an elected California Democratic Party Delegate, Vice President for the Young Democrats of San Joaquin, and Central Valley Regional Chair of the Iranian American Democrats of California. She graduated with a B.A. in Political Science from San José State University in 2022.

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Eve Levenson

National Youth Advisor

Originally from Los Angeles CA, Eve got her start in politics through her Jewish community working on issues of equity within her school, homelessness in the city, and the global issue of genocide and mass-atrocities prevention. She then spent two years leading MFOL’s policy and advocacy work as their Federal Affairs and then Policy & Government Affairs Manager. Currently, Eve is an associate for the Democratic consulting firm Democracy Partners, a youth strategist for Team Pelosi, and board member for Voters of Tomorrow. She has a B.A. and M.P.A from George Washington University.

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Robert Jimenez

Operations Manager

Robert started getting involved in politics during high school in Riverside, CA. Robert started off his grassroots efforts by working to implement voter registration education into his high school district. He then planned and executed rallies in support of immigrant rights, gun violence prevention and climate change reform. Since moving to LA, Robert has worked on local campaigns as well as congressional campaigns so that underrepresented communities are advocated for and represented adequately in U.S. elections. He has a B.A. in Political Science and International Development Studies from UCLA.

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Justyn Kelly

Youth Vote Coordinator

Justyn Kelly began organizing in 2022 as a Democracy Summer Fellow with the Mike Levin Campaign in CA-49. He went on to work full time as a Deputy Field Director in the Orange County region of CA-49 through the 2022 midterms—helping to defend one the of the most competitive House races in the country. He was brought on this summer with HQ full time to manage all of our youth engagement programming! He is attending the University of Southern California this spring to study political economy.

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Barry Rosenbaum

Senior Editor & Affiliate Coordinator

Barry has been involved in Democratic politics since his youth in Texas – a long, long time ago. After retiring from the Santa Monica City Attorney’s Office in 2016, he began volunteering with the Westside Democratic HQ. He was a frequent phone bank trainer during the 2018 midterms and has been involved with the Grassroots Democrats HQ since its inception, serving as the Volunteer Coordinator and a texting leader for the 2020 election cycle.

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Andy Linden

Recruitment Coordinator

After canvassing in the Midwest for the 2016 election, Andy was a volunteer trainer during the 2018 midterms at the Westside Democratic HQ. In 2020, Andy joined the Grassroots Democrats HQ as the Recruitment Coordinator, shepherding the HQ’s ability to recruit and retain volunteers. Andy is also an expert phone banking and text banking trainer. He is currently faculty at the California State University, Northridge, where he teaches the history/philosophy of physical culture and researches the intersections of sport and politics.

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Pratyush Mallick

Technology Coordinator

Since high school, Pratyush has worked both volunteer and staff roles on several political and issue advocacy campaigns, primarily in his home state of Texas. In 2020, he was elected as one of the youngest National Delegates at the Democratic National Convention, where he helped lead conversations on COVID relief, Universal Basic Income, and Healthcare. Currently, he is a junior at Harvard College pursuing a joint concentration in Government and Computer Science.

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Jane Faull

Field Organizer

Born in Stockton, CA, Jane began her work in activism and politics in her youth by working with local organizations on LGBTQ+ rights, environmental action, and youth literacy. Jane first began with the Grassroots Democrats HQ in 2020 as a volunteer phone banker for the Presidential election. Enthused and inspired by the work of the HQ she joined the Fellowship program in 2021, and was promoted to the position of Field Organizer in early 2023. Recent President of the Politics and Law Club, she recently graduated from San Joaquin Delta College with her A.A. in Political Science. She is now attending Arizona State University to obtain her B.A. in Political Science.

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Sidney Stern

Organizer & Assistant to the Fellowship Program

Sidney started her political career when she was eight as a genocide and mass atrocities prevention activist. She moved into the campaign arena in high school, volunteering for campaigns in the 2020 Election. She joined the HQ as a fellow in early 2022, eventually progressing into a part-time organizer and Assist to the Fellowship. In her free time, she serves as a researcher for local campaigns and as a writer for her school’s newspaper. Currently she is a freshman at American University studying Political Science and Journalism.

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Pamela "Kelly" McAfee

Distributive Organizer & Community Liaison

What happens when you cross an IT professional, call center technical assistant, and a radio DJ? Mix it with the passion of a activist, the voice of an advocate, and the heart of a Democrat. Pamela knows that promise of the United States is something we all must work for. From judge at the polls of North Texas, to staging location director in North Carolina, she was hooked. It wasn’t until the pandemic in 2020 that allowed Pam to really use her skills. Pam’s mobility issues were a hindrance to participating fully, but she was always at home online. A natural in zoom, her tech support skills and training background allowed her to help activists transition from in person to virtual organizing. She is very happy to have found a home within the Grassroots Dems HQ community.

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Bridget Matthews

Distributive Organizer

Bridget began her political career at a young age, walking precincts for local measures supporting her public schools; work she continued into her teens. Her efforts intensified during 2020 with her involvement in the Stop Asian Hate movement and her role as a poll worker during the 2020 election. Bridget began volunteering with the HQ as a high school student. She then joined the fellowship program in early 2022, and now works as a Distributive Organizer. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, listening to music, and trying new, local eats. She is a sophomore at New York University studying Political Science and Public Relations.