Staff

Who We Are Staff

Staff

Louise Dubé Contact

Executive Director, iCivics

Louise Dubé serves as the Executive Director of iCivics. Louise discovered the power of education in the early 1990’s as a co-founder of CASES, a New York alternative-to-incarceration program where education helped re-shape lives. Inspired by a deep commitment to learning, she has devoted her career to ensuring that all students are prepared for active and thoughtful citizenship and life.

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Louise has successfully led growth organizations that make and deliver engaging educational technology. Most recently, she was the Managing Director of Digital Learning at WGBH. At WGBH, Louise helped launch PBS LearningMedia, a platform reaching over 1.5 million educators. Previously, Louise served as President of Pangea Tools, an educational software start-up successfully acquired by Houghton Mifflin. As President of Soliloquy Learning, Louise structured the sale of the company to Scientific Learning where she served as Vice President and General Manager of Speech Products.

Louise began her career as an attorney in Montreal, Canada, and holds a law degree from McGill University, as well as an MBA from Yale University. Louise has been recognized as a Draper, Richards, Kaplan Social Entrepreneur. During her tenure, iCivics won the MacArthur Foundation’s Award for Creative and Effective Institutions.

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Emma Humphries Contact

Deputy Director of CivxNow

Dr. Emma Humphries joined iCivics as Chief Education Officer in February 2016.

Emma began her career in education as a classroom teacher in north Florida where she taught all levels of American government, American history, and economics. It was there she first learned the power of innovative learning tools, oftentimes digital, that allow students to engage with important content and make meaning of otherwise dry concepts such as federalism and limited government.

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In 2008, she began a Ph.D. program in Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Florida where she focused her studies and research on civic education and teacher professional development until she graduated in 2012. As luck would have it, Justice O’Connor visited the Florida legislature during this time, inspiring them to pass the Justice Sandra Day O’Connor Civics Education Act in 2010, which mandated civics instruction at the middle school level. This timely development provided Emma with opportunities to partner with the Florida Joint Center for Citizenship in drafting a yearlong 7th grade civics curriculum and assisting in subsequent teacher training efforts.

In 2011, Emma joined the team at the Bob Graham Center for Public Service as its Civic Engagement Coordinator. In this role, she worked with center and campus leadership to promote civic engagement at the University of Florida by developing, implementing, and coordinating innovative programs for students. During her tenure, she also created and taught an award-winning, online citizenship course entitled “Rethinking Citizenship: Identity, Collaboration, and Action.”

Emma has degrees in political science and education and was awarded a James Madison Fellowship in 2004. She was a founding member of the iCivics Teacher Council (now Educator Network), and has been spreading the good word about iCivics since 2010.

Emma is a native Floridian. She lives in Jacksonville, FL with her husband, Michael, and their daughters, June and Julia. When she’s not reading the Federalist Papers or tormenting the rest of the iCivics team with weather reports, she enjoys jogging away her worries and attending music festivals with her husband and friends. Follow her on Twitter @GatorCitizen.

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Shawn Healy Contact

Senior Director of Policy and Advocacy

Shawn Healy, PhD, Senior Director, State Policy and Advocacy, leads iCivics’ state policy and advocacy work through the CivXNow Coalition and oversees civic education campaigns in several key states. He plays an active role in recruiting supporters to fund policy, advocacy, and implementation efforts in the states to ensure impact.

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Healy chaired the Illinois Task Force on Civic Education in 2014 and later led separate, successful legislative campaigns for a required civics course in Illinois in middle and high school, respectively. He also led the Illinois Social Science Standards Task Force. Its recommendations were adopted by the Illinois State Board of Education in 2015.

Healy makes regular appearances as a guest speaker and panelist at academic and professional development conferences across the country, is a frequent contributor to local and national media, and produces original scholarship in the area of political participation and civic education. Healy also serves as an adjunct professor in Public Policy at the University of Illinois at Chicago and is a Serve Illinois Commissioner.

Before joining iCivics, Healy worked for fifteen years at the Robert R. McCormick Foundation in various capacities, most recently serving as Democracy Program Director. He began his career as a social studies teacher at West Chicago Community High School (IL) and Sheboygan North High School (WI). A 2001 James Madison Fellow from the State of Wisconsin, he holds a MA and PhD from the University of Illinois at Chicago in political science and earned a bachelor’s degree with distinction in Political Science, History and Secondary Education from the University of Wisconsin at Madison. His dissertation is titled “Essential School Supports for Civic Learning.”

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Julie Silverbrook Contact

Senior Director of Partnerships

Julie Silverbrook served as Executive Director of The Constitutional Sources Project (ConSource) in Washington, DC, from 2012-2020. She regularly writes and lectures on the United States Constitution and its history, and the importance of civic education to the health of the American republic.

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Julie has nearly a decade of experience in growth projects for non-profit organizations, cultivating partnerships, fundraising, coalition-building, and business development and management. She holds a J.D. from the William & Mary Law School, where she received the National Association of Women Lawyers Award and the Thurgood Marshall Award and served as a Senior Articles Editor on the William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal. She graduated Summa Cum Laude, Phi Beta Kappa from The George Washington University with a B.A. in Political Science. Upon graduation, she was awarded the GW Columbian College of Arts and Sciences Distinguished Scholar Award, the highest academic award given to a student in the arts and sciences college. Julie lives in Bethesda, MD, with her husband Adam.

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Natacha Scott Contact

Director of Educator Engagement

Natacha worked with the Boston Public Schools for the past 14 years beginning her journey as a third grade teacher at the Josiah Quincy Elementary School after she graduated from Northeastern University with a Masters in Teaching and a Bachelor’s concentrated in Public History. She then continued her growth in leadership by participating in a principal internship through the Center for Collaborative Education Principal Residency Network.

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Prior to transitioning to her role as K-12 Director of History and Social Studies, Natacha worked with the History Department in several different capacities including curriculum writer, elementary coach, and assistant director in order to develop curriculum resources and professional development to support teachers with designing engaging and meaningful learning experiences for students.

Beyond the classroom, Natacha had served as a review panel member supporting the revision of the Massachusetts History and Social Science 2018 Curriculum Framework. She also contributed to the design and development of the Civics Project Guidebook used to frame the expectations of the Action Civics Projects aligned with the 2018 Massachusetts law on civic education. Natacha also serves as a Steering Committee member and Educator Workshop Lead for the Educating for American Democracy Roadmap project. She is also a part-time lecturer at Northeastern University, facilitating a course on history and social studies pedagogy. Additionally, Natacha also presents at both local and national history and social studies conferences to share best practices in the field.

When Natacha is not diligently working on supporting teachers, curating resources, and developing curriculum, she enjoys spending time baking delicious treats and chauffeuring her 8 year old boy – girl twins to sports practice. Follow Natacha on Twitter @natacha_scott.

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Ace Parsi Contact

Director of Partner Engagement

Ace Parsi serves as Director of Partner Engagement. Prior to this role, Ace held a number of policy, research, and school-based positions including as Director of Innovation at the National Center for Learning Disabilities, Director of Deeper Learning at the National Association of State Boards of Education, and Director of Policy at the National Service-Learning Partnership. 

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Other organizational stops on that journey included equity-focused work at the Alliance for Excellent Education, Policy Analysis for California Education, and Fair Oaks Community School in Redwood City, California. 

Ace’s civics journey began when he and his family immigrated to the U.S. from Iran when he was eight. His own experience as an English language learner and free and reduced price lunch student led him towards a passion for utilizing education as a driver for greater equity and inclusion.   He holds a Masters in Public Policy Degree from the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley.  He is a proud resident of Morgantown, West Virginia where he resides with his wife, Clare, and daughter, Ella.

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Patricia Leslie-Brown Contact

Associate Director of Field Building Operations

Patricia serves as Associate Director of Field Building Operations managing work that elevates civic education and engagement as a national priority in order to protect and strengthen America’s constitutional democracy.

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Through the Educating for American Democracy initiative and CivXNow Coalition, these efforts reimagine, promote, expand, and deliver relevant, inclusive, and engaging civic learning to ensure all students have access to quality civic education and are prepared with the knowledge and skills necessary to assume their rights and responsibilities to participate in civic life in our increasingly dynamic, polarized, and digital society. Prior to joining iCivics, Patricia studied Political Science, with a concentration in American Government, and Public Administration, with a concentration in State and Municipal Government Management, at American University in Washington, DC. Following grad school, she returned to her native Massachusetts and served as Field Director, Campaign Manager, then Chief of Staff to State Representative Michael S. Day. Outside of the office, she spends her time crafting, volunteering with the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) and Boston Area Rape Crisis Center (BARCC), and binge watching bad reality tv.

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Abbie Kaplan Contact

Federal Policy Associate

Abbie Kaplan joined iCivics in 2021 as a Federal Policy Associate working with the organization’s CivXNow Coalition. Prior to joining iCivics, Abbie worked at Partners In Health on the frontlines of the coronavirus pandemic, helping teams manage COVID-19 relief and response efforts in her home state of Massachusetts. Abbie previously worked in government relations and public policy at two large firms, McDermott Will & Emery, and Bracewell LLP.

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As an undergraduate, she worked in DC public schools tutoring K-12 students, interned at a large Jewish non-profit, and volunteered with several women’s health organizations and on a number of political and issue-based advocacy campaigns.Abbie earned her Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Psychology with a minor in Women’s Studies from George Washington University. A proud native Bostonian, Abbie resides in the District where she enjoys walking and picnicking all over the city, cheering on her New England sports teams, taking part in her synagogue’s young professionals network, and petting every dog she sees.

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