Who Runs the Show

A small group of committed individuals who eat, sleep, and drink the New Era…

Arianna Morales

Advocacy Organizer
Arianna (at) NewEraColorado (dot) org

Born to the humid Southern California weather, Arianna has adjusted to the unpredictable climate in Colorado by spending half her life in the state without gloves or snow boots. She is currently in the last stretch to complete her BA in Chicano Studies with a minor in Sociology at Metropolitan State University. In 2018, she worked as a fellow with the Colorado Latino Leadership Advocacy and Research Organization (CLLARO) and as part of the fellowship, was fortunate to work as a legislative intern throughout the 2018 legislative session. As an intern, she learned all things state politics and had the opportunity to work with organizations such as the ACLU. If she’s not working or sleeping, she’s probably ordering sushi and pretending reality shows aren’t scripted.

Passions: literature by WOC, intersectional feminist theories, authentic Mexican food (probably made by her mom), analyzing television shows like Lost or Westworld, and attempting to read people’s natal charts

Brittany Bennett

Development Manager
Brittany (at) neweracolorado (dot) org

Leveraging her degree Bachelor’s of Science in Engineering Science from Smith College and 6 years of nonprofit leadership and development experience, Brittany works as New Era’s Development Manager. She has a strong interest in solving complex social and civic challenges using both fundraising and data analytics (and often a blend of the two!). In between advocating for transportation equity and environmental justice, Brittany immerses herself in the YouTube Lets Play video game subculture.

Passions: Compassionate communication, climate justice, sustainability

Charley Olena

Advocacy Director
Charley (at) neweracolorado (dot) org

Charley was born and raised in Buffalo, NY, which instilled in her a deep love for losing sports teams and chicken wings.  After graduating from Colby College, Charley spent the next four years training organizers to run and win environmental campaigns with Green Corps and its partner organizations.  She’s joining the New Era team to dig in on issue work around climate change, economic justice, election access and abortion rights.  When she’s not working to engage young people in New Era’s issue work, you can find Charley at the Denver Curling Club or brunch.

Passions: stopping climate change, The Buffalo Bills, curling, cheeses, bloody marys

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Emma Marion

Organizing Director
Emma (at) neweracolorado (dot) org

Emma grew up in Boulder, CO playing in the beautiful Rocky Mountains and hugging the occasional tree. She majored in International Studies and Spanish at CSU, where her itching travel bug led her to Spain for a year. She’s got a passion for grassroots organizing and fell in love with New Era as a Northern Organizer in 2014. She’s a real boss in the field and is fired up to get down and dirty as the Boulder Program Organizer.

Passions: her dog, procrastibaking (baking as a form of procrastination), election access, politifact, Steve Inskeep, a fat stack of voter reg forms, the container store

Lauren Smith

Advocacy Organizer
Lauren (at) neweracolorado (dot) org

Lauren was born in Texas but has lived in Colorado for most of her life. She started out as an intern at New Era in 2017 and immediately got hooked. Since then she has volunteered and organized for the 2018 election before joining the advocacy team. When Lauren isn’t fighting for reproductive justice she’s likely exploring Denver or singing with her a cappella group.

Passions: Intersectional feminism, environmental justice, tacos, live music


Lizzy Stephan

Executive Director
Lizzy (at) neweracolorado (dot) org

Lizzy started out simply as a distant superfan of New Era for longer than she’d admit, volunteering to knock doors and register voters from time to time while a student at Colorado College. She officially joined the team in 2012 as an organizer, moving on to serve as New Era’s Organizing Director, and then Deputy Director before stepping into the Executive Director role. Lizzy is the mastermind behind taking our work to a new scale, while making what we do more strategic, data-driven, and systematized. She spends a good amount of her time buried in spreadsheets for New Era, managing our program staff, planning statewide voter mobilization efforts, and the rest of it struggling to keep a handful of cacti alive. Lizzy is originally from Warwick, a small town in the Hudson Valley of New York that has a lot of apple orchards.

Passions: Sociology, election access, iced Americanos and half-sour pickles

Michael Carter

Communications Manager
Michael (at) neweracolorado (dot) org

Michael is a proud Virginian (at-large) who grew up in the shadow of the Blue Ridge Mountains. He studied English and Environmental Policy at UVA before Colorado pulled him away to begin advocating for stronger national environmental protections. This work plugged him into the wonderful world of progressive politics, leading him down a rabbit hole that landed him at New Era. When not working to move Colorado forward, he writes, reads, hikes, and sleeps.

Passions: backpacking, short stories, conservation, pixar movies, 90s rap, foxhounds

Morgan Royal

Senior Organizing Manager
Morgan (at) NewEraColorado (dot) org

Morgan was born and raised in Colorado, loves reading, eating mac and cheese, and discussing the latest political headlines. She started volunteering with New Era in 2014 while studying Political Science and Women’s Studies at CSU. She enjoys working to dismantle systems of power and oppression by striving to make our democracy more equitable.

Passions: Multiracial Feminism, pizza, reality TV, and going to bed early

Natalie Drevets
Development Director
Natalie (at) NewEraColorado (dot) org

Natalie is a recent Denver transplant—she grew up in Wichita and Taipei, and spent the last six years in Chicagoland. After earning a degree in sociology and urban studies from Wheaton College, she stuck around to manage their development and student philanthropy programs. When she’s not asking people to give money to New Era, you can find Natalie meeting future friends (no one is a stranger), exploring new cities, or texting her friends about their local elections.

Passions: social theory, finding dirt cheap flights, sitcoms, and beating people at Munchkin.

Victoria Dadet
Advocacy Manager
Victoria (at) neweracolorado (dot) org

Victoria was born in southern California but, after moving around a bunch, her family settled in the northwest suburbs outside of Chicago. After she completed her internship with New Era during the summer of 2016, she worked as an Organizing Fellow in the fall of 2016. Before joining the team in 2018 as the Advocacy Manager, she graduated from CU Boulder with a double major in Psychology and Ethnic Studies. When she isn’t working, she’s either catching up on her favorite TV shows or lounging in the sun (weather permitting).

Passions: Beyoncé, analyzing pop culture, Black Lives Matter, intersectional feminism

Maggie Bryniarski
Climate Organizer
Maggie (at) neweracolorado (dot) org

Maggie grew up in the mountains of Colorado and moved to Boulder to attend CU where she obtained her BA degree in sociology. During her time at CU, Maggie became involved with New Era as an intern in the spring of 2015 which is when she fell in love with field work. Maggie has been around ever since! New Era helped Maggie discover her passions for grassroots organizing, social justice and working with other young people to make a meaningful difference on important issues. When she’s not organizing for new era, you can catch her buying different flavored fancy feasts for her cat on an endless quest to find the right flavor.

Passions: social constructionism, buffalo sauce, her cat, high young voter turnout

Alainna Belknap
Civic Engagement Program Manager
Alainna (at) neweracolorado (dot) org

Alainna grew up in Rochester, New York before moving to Washington, DC for the sole purpose of getting fed up with Washington politics. She’s excited to bring her organizing experience to the great state of Colorado, getting young people registered and ready to change the political landscape for the better.

Passions: Racial and economic justice, Battlestar Galactica, LGBTQ+ theory, cooking and baking, and skateboarding (or, learning to skateboard).

Kate Travis
Data Manager
kate (at) neweracolorado (dot) org

As a kid, Kate told adults she wanted to be a ‘volcanologist who is also President’ when she grew up. She’s dialed that back a bit, but continues to balance dual interests in science and politics. She studied Environmental Science and Economics at UVA and taught math in NYC for three years before returning to her home state to work on the 2018 Midterms. Kate cares deeply about data and ethics, especially as they intersect with racial justice.

Passions:statistics, Elinor Ostrom, queer theory, NPR, public history

Michele Weindling
Boulder Lead Organizer
michele (at) neweracolorado (dot) org

Michele grew up in Denver and got her degree in English Literature at the University of Colorado Boulder. She is a passionate grassroots activist and can usually be found speaking loudly about important issues all around the state. She is working hard to protect the future of the planet, and spends much of her time outdoors soaking in the glorious Colorado sunshine…but if ever lost, she can likely be found curled up on the couch with her dogs binge watching Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones, or New Girl. She is so excited to be working for an organization that has played such an instrumental role in her dedication to democracy as a young person!

Passions: Painting, singing, writing, food, camping, petting dogs

Ashly Villa-Ortega
Denver Lead Organizer
ashly (at) neweracolorado (dot) org

Having grown up in the Northside of Denver, Montbello, and Green Valley Ranch and being the daughter of two Mexican immigrants, Ashly’s life-long love for a young British wizard (Harry Potter) destined to defeat the most powerful dark wizard of all time hasn’t always been understood by her communities or family. Nonetheless, she still has a strong commitment to making positive profound change for and in the communities she comes from. At CU Boulder, she earned a dual degree in International Affairs and Ethnic Studies while at the same time spending three long years trying to learn Arabic and somehow managing to earn a minor in it even though she reads it at a second grade level. With the knowledge she gained at university and her own experiences, Ashly hopes to be able to foster a community of advocates, activists, and allies at New Era that is safe, inclusive, and revolutionary. In her free time, you can find Ashly constantly overthinking things and trying to stop herself from eating more hot Cheetos.

Passions: Black Lives Matter, reading, writing and watching slam poetry, dogs, singing to Banda MS songs, pho, talking, learning from community, the color yellow, jumex, standing in solidarity with all oppressed peoples, and living for a liberated future

Hannah Robinson-Armour, MBA
Operations Director
hannah (at) neweracolorado (dot) org

Hannah considers herself a Coloradan having moved to Boulder when she was six. She received her undergraduate degree from CU Boulder in history and chemistry then went out to explore the world. After living in China for a year, she was drawn back to Colorado and discovered a love of operations and completed her MBA at CU Denver (because you’re unstoppable with a STEM degree, a liberal arts degree, and a business degree). She loves working at New Era so she can combine her love of progressive politics, spreadsheets, and overall operations. When not working, she’s reading, cooking, and eating.

Passions: project management, traveling, tax policy, books, and big words. Also food.