Make Big Plans: The Action Lab expands its family of staff and collaborators

In February 2022, The Action Lab welcomed a diverse team of seasoned, energetic and talented new staff to fortify and propel our work of imagining and strategizing new ways forward. 

Marinieves Alba and Dmitri Holtzman join us as Directors of TAL’s four pillar initiatives. 

Mari brings her deep experience and leadership to execute, coordinate and invigorate the evolving programmatic work of the Belafonte and Gathering Strength Initiatives. She is a cultural worker, educator, writer, and activist born and raised in New York City and has worked in the international NGO and non-profit sector for over two decades, specializing in issues related to racial and cultural equity in the arts, education, and social justice. 

Dmitri is the new Director of the Justice and Innovation initiatives. Before joining The Action Lab, at the Center for Popular Democracy, Dmitri was Interim Campaign Manager and led CPD’s education justice strategy, working with partner organizations and coalitions to organize for a high quality, equitable and accessible public education system in the United States. Before joining CPD, he was the founding executive director of the Equal Education Law Centre (EELC) in South Africa, the sister organization to and primary litigation partner of the youth-led social movement, Equal Education (EE). 

Nepal Asatthawasi leads development and fundraising efforts at TAL as the Director of Resource Development and Partnerships. She arrives from the Pratt Center for Community Development, where she oversaw the planning and execution of the organization’s fundraising strategy and operational systems while working closely with staff on program design and implementation.  

At the close of 2021, John Whitlow, Jessica Bauman, Tina Habib and Kofi Taha joined our Board of Directors to help us refine and execute on our mission and priorities, and to continuously improve our organization. They bring leadership, expertise and perspectives that will deepen our connection to the key movements, stakeholders and strategies needed to achieve structural change in our democracy, economy and culture.

Over the past year, TAL has built an amazingly visionary advisory board. Advisors anchor The Action Lab community and propel our work forward in a variety of ways. In addition to partnering on key initiatives of TAL, they share insights from their fields, and the communities they represent, to help us to better achieve our core goals. With our advisors, we dream big and we work together to make our dreams reality.