POGO's Board of DirectorsTweet
Board of Directors
(Affiliation for identification only)
David Hunter, Chair
David Hunter is Professor of Law, Director of the International Legal Studies Program and Director of the Program on International and Comparative Environmental Law at American University's Washington College of Law. Prof. Hunter was the former Executive Director of the Center for International Environmental Law, a non-governmental organization dedicated to protecting the global environment through the use of international law. He currently serves on the Boards of Directors of the Bank Information Center, Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide-US, EarthRights International, and is a Board Member and Member Scholar of the Center for Progressive Reform. He is also a member of the Organization of American States’ Expert Group on Environmental Law, the Steering Committee of the IUCN Commission on Environmental Law, and the Compliance Advisor/Ombudsman’s Strategic Advisors Group. Mr. Hunter is author of many articles and books relating to international environmental law, accountability and transparency in global governance, and sustainable development.
Dina Rasor, Treasurer
Dina Rasor is a partner in the Bauman and Rasor Group which does investigative and consulting work on lawsuits including health care fraud and military procurement fraud. Ms. Rasor founded POGO's predecessor organization, the Project on Military Procurement, in 1981 and directed it for ten years. In that capacity, Ms. Rasor researched and publicized many of the major defense scandals of the 1980s such as the infamous $7,600 coffee brewer and the $670 armrest in the C-5 cargo plane, as well as the ineffectiveness of major weapons systems and other procurement fraud. She also worked as an investigative journalist for newspapers and television shows such as ABC's PrimeTime. Ms. Rasor authored The Pentagon Underground, co-authored the whistleblower's manual Courage without Martyrdom: A Survival Guide for Whistleblowers, and edited the book, More Bucks, Less Bang: How the Pentagon Buys Ineffective Weapons.
Ryan Alexander is President of Taxpayers for Common Sense. Prior to joining TCS, Ms. Alexander at various times served as Executive Director of the Common Cause Education Fund, the research and education affiliate of Common Cause; a consultant to foundations and advocacy organizations; a program officer for the Rockefeller Family Fund; and a litigating attorney for the Appalachian Research and Defense Fund in West Virginia. In 2001, she co-founded the Appalachian Center for the Economy and the Environment, which she continues to chair. Ms. Alexander received a B.A. from Wesleyan University, a J.D. from the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and was awarded a NAPIL Equal Justice Fellowship.
Hank Banta is an attorney with Lobel, Novins & Lamont where he primarily practices federal energy law. Previously, he served as Counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee and the Senate Subcommittee on Antitrust and Monopoly. Mr. Banta also worked at the Federal Trade Commission where he was staff attorney and attorney-advisor to the Chairman of the Commission. Prior to that he was a lieutenant in the U.S. Army. Mr. Banta received both his B.S. and law degree from Georgetown University.
Lisa Baumgartner Bonds
Lisa Baumgartner Bonds is the Senior Director of Donor Services at the Lutheran Community Foundation. Lisa joined the LCF in December of 2011, and leads and manages the LCF’s Community Grants & Services Department and the Charitable Giving Services Department. Prior to the LCF, Lisa worked at Lutheran World Relief (LWR) where she managed and led LWR’s fundraising, marketing, congregation and community engagement, public policy, and advocacy and communication. She has served on the board of Divine Chocolate US, Inc., a Fair Trade/farmer-owned chocolate corporation. Previously, Lisa worked for a number of Washington, DC-based causes and nonprofit organizations including the World Wildlife Fund, the National Breast Cancer Coalition and the Alaska Wilderness League; as a consultant for M&R Strategic Services; as a professor at American University in Washington, DC and St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN; and as a press secretary for a member of U.S. Congress. She completed her undergraduate work at Gustavus Adolphus College and received her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota.
David Burnham is the co-director of Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC). With The New York Times from 1968 to 1986, Mr. Burnham wrote numerous prize winning investigative pieces including those depicted in "Serpico," and "Silkwood." He has been inducted into the Freedom Forum's National Freedom of Information Hall of Fame, and honored with the Polk Award, the Patterson Fellowship, and the Rockefeller Foundation Fellowship, among others. He is the author of several books including Above the Law: Secret Deals, Political Fixes, Other Misadventures of the U.S. Department of Justice, and A Law Unto Itself: Power, Politics and the IRS.
Michael Cavallo works for the Clinton Foundation on projects to help forestall climate change. He heads their energy-efficient lighting effort and is also in charge of United States and Australia based projects for their Climate Positive Development program. His past experience includes stints in government including as Commissioner of the Massachusetts Disabled Persons Protection Commission, with non-profits including as Executive Director of the United States Chess Federation, and in the private sector including owning his own money management firm.
Andrew Cockburn is the Washington editor of Harper’s Magazine. He is the author of numerous books and articles, with an emphasis on defense and national security issues. His most recent book is Rumsfeld: His Rise, Fall, and Catastrophic Legacy. Mr. Cockburn has also produced numerous documentaries in partnership with his wife Leslie, including many films for PBS Frontline, and most recently American Casino (2009) about the ongoing Wall Street crash and its effect on ordinary people. He is a graduate of Oxford University.
Mickey Edwards was a Member of Congress for 16 years, serving as chairman of the House Republican Policy Committee (the party’s fourth-ranking leadership position) and as a ranking minority member of the House Budget and Appropriations Committees. After leaving Congress, he taught for eleven years at Harvard (at the Kennedy School of Government and Harvard Law School) and then for five at Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs before returning to Washington to become a vice president of the Aspen Institute. He has been a weekly political columnist for the Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune and a regular commentator on National Public Radio’s All Things Considered. He has been published in most of the nation’s major newspapers and in publications ranging from The Atlantic to The Nation. His most recent book, The Parties Versus the People: How to Turn Republicans and Democrats into Americans, was published in 2012 by Yale University Press.
Janine Jaquet has been a newspaper and magazine reporter, and an Emmy-winning producer of television news, public affairs and documentary programming. S he has taught writing at Johns Hopkins University and NYU, and after several years as a contributor to The Nation magazine, she went on staff at its non-profit sister organization, The Nation Institute. She is currently Vice President for Development at the New-York Historical Society.
Debra Katz is a partner with Katz, Marshall & Banks, LLC, a civil rights law firm based in Washington, D.C. The firm specializes in the representation of whistleblowers. Ms. Katz has represented nuclear, financial services, defense contractor and pharmaceutical whistleblowers for more than 30 years. Ms. Katz received her B.A. degree from Union College in Schenectady, New York and her law degree from the University of Wisconsin in Madison, WI.
Morton Mintz has been a reporter since 1946, first in St. Louis and then at The Washington Post from 1958 to 1988. Mr. Mintz has received numerous awards and honors including the Columbia Journalism Award; the Playboy Foundation's Hugh M. Hefner First Amendment Award for Lifetime Achievement; the Worth Bingham, Heywood Broun, Raymond Clapper, and George Polk Memorial Awards; and twice, the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild award for Public Service.
A major focus of Mr. Mintz while at The Washington Post was grave corporate crime and misconduct. He conducted investigations into numerous issues including thalidomide, the sedative/tranquilizer that caused several thousand children worldwide to be born without arms or legs; the disastrous Dalkon Shield and Cu-7 IUDs; the tobacco industry; the tailing of Ralph Nader by a private eye retained by General Motors; a cholesterol-lowering drug MER/29 that afflicted thousands of users with cataracts and other maladies; and Oraflex, a dangerous anti-arthritis drug withdrawn by the manufacturer only a few months after sales began. He has written and co-authored several books including At Any Cost: Corporate Greed, Women, and the Dalkon Shield and America, Inc.: Who Owns and Operates the United States.
Nithi Vivatrat is an entrepreneur and corporate strategist involved in ventures ranging from technology to real estate. He is currently the Chief Product Officer of Clarabridge, a provider of customer experience management solutions. Prior to Clarabridge, he was the Chief Operating Officer of a technology firm serving the defense and intelligence sector. He was co-founder and Managing Partner of Claraview, a strategy and technology consulting firm, which was acquired by Teradata Corporation in March 2008. While at Claraview, Mr. Vivatrat led Claraview's government practice, focusing on projects aimed to inform decision-making and improve citizen service.. Prior to Claraview, Mr. Vivatrat had leadership roles in technology and marketing at MicroStrategy. He graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a BS in Economics.
Anne Zill is the Director of the Center for Ethics in Action at the University of New England. She is also the President of the Fund for Constitutional Government and an advisor to the Stewart R. Mott Charitable Trust. Some of the other programs and organizations she has founded, developed, and/or led include: Women's Campaign Fund; Women's Campaign Research Fund; The Karen Silkwood Fund; Women for Meaningful Summits; Women's Foreign Policy Campaign; and PROLEAD, a fund to promote democracy and women's leadership at the Inter-American Development Bank. Ms. Zill curates art exhibitions, which have included "The Progress of the World's Women" for the United Nations in 2000.
Charles Hamel, Board Emeritus
Charles Hamel is a retired international management consultant. He served as Administrative Assistant to Connecticut U.S. Senator Thomas J. Dodd and as Executive Assistant to Alaska U.S. Senator Mike Gravel. While engaged as an independent tanker and oil broker with oil lease interests on the North Slope of Alaska, Mr. Hamel discovered environmental, health, and safety violations by Alyeska Pipeline and its oil company owners. Mr. Hamel, acting as a conduit for concerned whistleblowers including Alyeska employees, became a source of information for Congress, State and Federal regulatory agencies and the media. Alyeska Pipeline and its owner companies, ARCO, BP, Exxon, Mobil, Unocal, Phillips and Amerada Hess, engaged the Wackenhut Corporation in mounting a massive undercover surveillance operation of Mr. Hamel. Federal Judge Stanley Sporkin, during 1993 U.S. District Court proceedings, described the details of Alyeska's spy operation on Mr. Hamel as "horrendous" and "reminiscent of Nazi Germany." Judge Sporkin further observed "no one should be subjected to the kind of treatment the Hamels were."