Our Staff

President
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Dann is the President of Washington Policy Center and has been with WPC since 1991. Since becoming President in 2001 he has testified by invitation before dozens legislative committees in Olympia and appeared on numerous radio and TV newscasts and programs around the state promoting the Center's work. He also appeared on the national PBS "Debates Debates" television program. Dann is a member of Seattle Rotary #4, a board member of the Greater Seattle Chamber of Commerce, and served on the Advisory Group of the Washington State Tax Structure Study Committee and the Citizen Performance Audit Oversight Board after being appointed by Gov. Gregoire. He is a graduate of Western Washington University and lives with his wife and twin daughters in Seattle.

Vice President for Research
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Paul Guppy is a graduate of Seattle University and holds graduate degrees from Claremont Graduate University and the London School of Economics.  He worked for 12 years in the U.S. Congress as a Chief of Staff and Legislative Director.  He is currently Vice President for Research at the Washington Policy Center, where he writes extensively on tax policy, public finance and other issues.  He is a frequent commentator on radio and TV news programs, and in newspapers across the state, and he is editor of the Policy Guide for Washington State.  He and his wife live in Seattle with their four children.

Read Paul's blog posts here.

Communications & Marketing Director
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Lisa was born and raised in Washington state. She studied at Seattle University and transferred to the University of Washington where she majored in political science and communications and also developed a life-long passion for all things Huskies. During her time at Seattle University, she founded a mentorship program linking students as volunteer chaplains to youth detained in the King County Juvenile Detention Center. She has served as a relief worker both at Ground Zero following the 9-11 attacks and in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina. Lisa spent six years in the marketing field where she managed multi-million dollar projects such as the launch of Microsoft’s Bing search engine and the rebranding of Expedia’s Destination Services program. Prior to joining the WPC team, Lisa worked as executive director to the King County Republican Party where she worked on Get-Out-The-Vote efforts for candidates on a local, statewide and federal level, as well as with grassroots activists and groups to develop coalition efforts, bridging communities within King County. She has served in her local church and is active in community networking organizations. She is also involved with the Korean American Coalition and serves on the board for the Women of Washington, the Roanoke Conference and the Jennifer Dunn Leadership Institute. Lisa resides in Bellevue.

Eastern Washington Office Director
(509) 570-2384

Chris Cargill is the Eastern Washington Director for Washington Policy Center. A sixth-generation Eastern Washingtonian, Chris grew up in Spokane and graduated from Gonzaga University with a bachelor's degree in broadcast communication studies and political science. Before joining WPC in 2009, he worked in TV news for 10 years. Chris has authored many of WPC’s studies specific to Eastern Washington, including WPC’s Analysis of Spokane’s Water Price Changes, the Citizens Guide to Spokane’s Children’s Investment Fund and how Pasco's Higher New Homeowners Fees Could Lower Home Values. He is an ex-officio for the Spokane Valley Chamber of Commerce and the Tri-City Regional Chamber of Commerce, and formerly served on the Spokane Regional Transportation Commission Advisory Committee and other mass transit sounding boards. He was also selected to serve on the budget and finance transition team for Spokane Mayor David Condon. In 2011, Chris was named by Inland Business Catalyst magazine as one of the 20 top professional and civic leaders under the age of 40 in the Inland Northwest. Chris and his family live in Liberty Lake, near Spokane. When not working for WPC, you can often find him with family or at hockey games.

Read Chris' blog posts here.

Development Director
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Stephanie True is the Development Director for Washington Policy Center. Before stepping into the Development Director role, Stephanie focused her time on WPC’s grant writing. Prior to WPC, Stephanie worked in both marketing and PR for Nordstrom, and began her career in sales for Bank of America. She realized her enthusiasm for development and fundraising while working with PONCHO, a Seattle-based arts organization, and volunteering at a corporate level with United Way of King County. She is a participant in the Charles G. Koch Foundation Liberty@Work program which promotes free-market ideals across the country. Stephanie has completed fundraising courses through the Fundraising School at Indiana University, and is a member of Northwest Development Officers Association (NDOA). She graduated from the University of Washington and remains a loyal and active Husky fan. Stephanie lives in Seattle with her husband Dustin and their dogs: Chester (mini-dachshund) and Ally (yellow lab).

Operations Manager
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Braden Goodwin is the Operations Manager with Washington Policy Center.  He oversees WPC's accounting, human resources, and office management.  He also coordinates WPC's internship program.  He has been with WPC since August of 2002 when he was hired as the Administrative Manager. Before joining WPC, Braden worked as a researcher for Project Vote Smart and interned for U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison from Texas. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee.  He and his wife Maren live in Seattle.

Director, Center for Education
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Liv Finne is Director of WPC's Center for Education. Prior to that position she served as an adjunct scholar focusing on education policy issues, authoring in-depth studies including An Overview of Public School Funding in Washington and Early Learning Proposals in Washington State. She is the author of Washington Policy Center's Education Reform Plan: Eight Practical Ways to Improve Public Schools, Learning Online: An Assessment of Online Public Education ProgramsReview of Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS) Programs for Child Care Services, and more. Liv holds a law degree from Boston University School of Law and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Wellesley College. She retired from civil litigation practice to raise two children and work as business partner for a small business she owns with her husband. Liv is passionate about improving Washington’s public education system.

Read Liv's blog posts here.

Director, Center for the Environment
(206) 963-3409

Todd Myers is Director of WPC's Center for the Environment. He is one of the nation's leading experts on free-market environmental policy. Todd is the author of the landmark 2011 book Eco-Fads: How the Rise of Trendy Environmentalism Is Harming the Environment and is designated a Wall Street Journal Expert panelist for energy and the environment. He has authored numerous studies on environmental issues, including Five Years of Environmental Policy: Are We Making a Difference; Promoting Personal Choice, Incentives and Investment to Cut Greenhouse Gases, and more. Todd's in-depth research on the failure of the state's 2005 "green" building mandate continues to receive national attention. He formerly served on the executive team at the Washington State Department of Natural Resources, and was Director of Public Relations for the Seattle SuperSonics and Director of Public Affairs for the Seattle Mariners. Todd holds a Master's degree from the University of Washington.

Read Todd's blog posts here.

Director, Center for Government Reform
(509) 547-2234 (Tri-Cities office)

Jason Mercier is Director of the Center for Government Reform at Washington Policy Center. He is a contributing editor of the Heartland Institute’s Budget & Tax News, serves on the board of the Washington Coalition for Open Government, and was an advisor to the 2002 Washington State Tax Structure Committee. In June 2010, former Governor Gregoire appointed Jason as WPC’s representative on her Fiscal Responsibility and Reform Panel. Jason holds a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Washington State University.

Read Jason's blog posts here.

Health Care Policy Analyst
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Dr. Roger Stark is a health care policy analyst at WPC and a retired physician. He is the author of two books including The Patient-Centered Solution: Our Health Care Crisis, How It Happened, and How We Can Fix It. He has also authored numerous in-depth studies on health care policy, including State Abuse of the Medicaid Program, A Review of the Medicaid Program: Its Impact in Washington State and Efforts at Reform in Other StatesWhat Works and What Doesn't: A Review of Health Care Reform in the States, and Health Care Reform that Works: An Update on Health Savings Accounts. In November 2013, he was invited to testify before Congress on the impacts of national health care reform in the state of Washington. Dr. Stark graduated from the University of Nebraska College of Medicine and moved to the Pacific Northwest where he completed his general surgery residency in Seattle and his cardiothoracic residency at the University of Utah. After practicing in Tacoma he moved to Bellevue and was one of the co-founders of the open heart surgery program at Overlake Hospital. He has served on the hospital's governing board. He retired from private practice in 2001 and became actively involved in the hospital’s Foundation, serving as Board Chair and Executive Director. Dr. Stark has been a member of many local and national professional societies. He currently serves on the Board of the Washington Liability Reform Coalition and is an active member of the Woodinville Rotary. He and his wife live on the Eastside and have children and grandchildren in the area.

Read Roger's blog posts here.

Director, Center for Small Business
(360) 705-6543 (WPC's Olympia office)

Erin Shannon is the Director of WPC's Center for Small Business. Before joining Washington Policy Center, she was the Public Relations Director of Washington state's largest pro-small business trade association, and was formerly a Legislative Correspondent for U.S. Congressman Randy Tate in Washington, D.C. Over the past 15 years Erin has appeared regularly in print, broadcast and radio media. She was a recurring guest on ABC's Bill Maher's Politically Incorrect, until the show's cancellation in 2002, and participated in a live, on-stage version of Politically Incorrect in Seattle with Bill Maher. Erin has served as the spokesperson for several pro-small business initiative campaigns including Referendum 53, repealing increases in unemployment insurance taxes; Initiative 841, repealing the state's ergonomics rule; and Initiative 1082, to end the state's monopoly on workers' compensation. Erin holds a bachelor's degree in political science from the University of Washington.

Read Erin's blog posts here.

Director, Coles Center for Transportation
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Bob Pishue is director of WPC’s Coles Center for Transportation. Prior to joining Washington Policy Center in 2013, Bob interned at the Washington Research Council where he produced policy briefs on initiatives and referenda. His last role was the IT and HR Manager for a Bellevue-based retailer. A Washington resident throughout his life, Bob grew up in Everett and graduated from Central Washington University with a bachelor’s degree in economics. Bob serves on his church’s annual audit committee and is also an avid golfer. He lives in Kirkland.

Read Bob's blog posts here.

Development Coordinator
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Sydney Jansen is the development coordinator for Washington Policy Center. Before joining the Development team, she started as an intern with WPC. Sydney graduated from the University of Washington in 2011 with a degree in Political Science and remains a devoted Husky fan. She found her passion for policy and free-market solutions during a study abroad program in Prague, Czech Republic, in 2009. WPC president Dann Mead Smith arranged a tour of Prague Castle, the official residence of Czech President Vaclav Klaus, during her time there which heightened Sydney’s interest in studying politics. Sydney grew up in Bellingham, Washington, and currently lives in Seattle.

Event Coordinator
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Katie is the event coordinator at Washington Policy Center. She graduated from Western Washington University with a political science degree in the spring of 2011. Prior to attending WWU, Katie earned her associate degree in administration of justice from Whatcom Community College, where she was a member of the Phi Theta Kappa honor society. A 12- week seminar on American direct democracy solidified her interest in policy issues while at WWU. Upon moving to Seattle, Katie found WPC and became an intern prior to becoming event coordinator. Apart from work and academics, she enjoys everything that keeps her active in the beautiful Pacific Northwest — hiking, camping and kayaking are just a few of the activities she loves.

Development Assistant
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Kaylee works as Development Assistant at Washington Policy Center. Kaylee holds a degree in psychology from the University of Washington. After graduating in 2012, Kaylee was an intern at The Borgen Project, which she credits for deepening her knowledge of politics and inspiring her to join WPC’s Development team. In her spare time, you can find Kaylee at Green Lake or cheering on her beloved Husky sports teams.

Communications Coordinator & Publications Manager
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Mary Catherine McAleer studied biology and economics at Gonzaga University as well as Middle East Global Politics at the London School of Economics. Throughout college, she chaired statewide and collegiate political clubs, worked on congressional campaigns and interned at Far West Agribusiness Association. A devout lover of dogs, she enjoys volunteering with animal shelters in Spokane and Seattle. Mary Catherine has researched for Washington Policy Center's Eastern Washington Office on issues relating to the constitutionality of Spokane initiatives as well as ecological policy. In her spare time, Mary Catherine can be found horseback riding, fly fishing and learning new languages near her home in Issaquah.