Purpose is infused in everything we do

Amplifier’s success goes beyond the sum of what we do in a given day, week or year. We seek a higher level of connection, to build resilience in ourselves and in others, and to find pathways to make systems work better for everyone. Our lived experience has shown us that when we live and work from a place of meaning, we can succeed in advancing our mission of unleashing human potential.

Building and sustaining relationships that advance our mission

For nearly a decade, Amplifier has been dedicated to working with visionary leaders who bring their passion and commitment to mission-driven work. From the beginning we knew that people matter more than profit, and we have learned along the way that the best method for us to amplify our impact is to help the new wave of social innovators succeed. By combining today’s unprecedented access to capital, networks and technology, we can push forward with steady optimism, confident that tomorrow will be a brighter day.

  • Our Value: Optimism

    Believing change is possible and creating solutions to make it happen.

  • Our Value: Love

    Seeing each person as an irreplaceable and unique gift. Taking action to create shared benefits.

  • Our Value: Integrity

    Creating bonds based on honesty, authenticity and transparency.

  • Our Value: Tenacity

    Creating audacious goals in any circumstance and staying the course until we reach our desired outcomes.

  • Our Value: Partnership

    Working with leaders who use experience and evidence to co-create ideas and solutions that transform the world.

Meet the team

We come from all over the globe. We arrived in different ways with vastly different experiences and expertise. But we share a passion for connecting change-makers and equipping them with the tools to change the world.

Allison Duncan

Founder and CEO

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Allison Duncan is an industry leader and advisor to global changemakers on philanthropy, impact investing and social entrepreneurship. Her passion to modernize philanthropy and make a difference on the world’s most urgent challenges led her to launch Amplifier to build and scale mission-driven programs. Since its inception in 2007, Amplifier has offered a partnership with an integrated team that imagines, designs and implements strategies that change social and economic systems. By activating capital, building strategic capabilities and inspiring networks, Amplifier aims to achieve audacious results in our lifetime.

Since 2007, Amplifier has activated more than $500 million and launched new ventures, portfolio strategies, and cutting-edge solutions for influential foundations and organizations around the world. Its clients include the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Erol Foundation, The Skoll Foundation, The Libra Foundation, Battery Powered, Arcus Foundation, Resources Legacy Fund, Swift Foundation, BRAC, Barefoot College and The Nature Conservancy, among others.

Allison began her career in philanthropy with the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. She served as the Program Director for a $400 million environmental investment and as the Director of Program Finance, where she created a practice to conduct due diligence, measure outcomes, and structure $1 billion in grants and program-related investments. Prior to joining the Moore Foundation, Allison worked at Deloitte in the Carolinas, Russia, New York and Silicon Valley

Chantal Buard

Head of Digital

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As a Partner and Head of Digital at Amplifier, Chantal Buard use the power of visual storytelling and technology solutions to accelerate the work of mission-drive organizations. She oversees a staff of designers, developers and content strategists to build effective and inspiring digital and communications products. In addition to steering visual design, Chantal leads both the engineering and the digital product development teams. Chantal has more than 20 years of experience in digital media production, combined with a lifelong interest in mission-driven work.

Before coming to Amplifier, Chantal founded Mana Productions in 2005, an audiovisual and design production company based in San Francisco, which merged with Amplifier in 2012. As a Media Producer for NBC/Quokka Ventures, she co-produced the online version of NBC’s coverage of the Sydney and Salt Lake City Olympics. Her expertise in design and video revolutionized the use of the Internet as an integral part of a worldwide media event.

Chantal’s diverse experience includes extended time in Tanzania where her documentary stories were featured by France Television. Through the non-profit Picture Earth, she worked to popularize the work of the world-renowned French photographer Yann Arthus-Bertrand in the U.S. Chantal graduated from the Sorbonne and holds an MBA from IAE, Aix en Provence and York University, Toronto, specializing in Media and Arts Management. Originally from Paris, France, Chantal has been living in San Francisco for nearly 20 years.

 

Abbey Banks

Director of Philanthropy

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As Director of Family and Individual Philanthropy, Abbey Banks has been at the forefront of Amplifier’s innovative programs that connect people to others and the mission-driven work that inspires them. She and her team designed, launched and grew Battery Powered, which has grown to more than 650 members contributing more than $8 million to mission-driven organizations in just two years of its existence.

Abbey’s career began in tech startups and learned how to bring new ideas to new audiences. Prior to coming to Amplifier, Abbey was the Director of Membership at Net Impact. Under her leadership membership grew by 60 percent to 15,000 members. It doubled the size of the chapter network to exceed 200 chapters and opened up international expansion in Asia, Latin America and Africa. At the East Bay Community Foundation, she led donor engagement programs to build giving communities for impact.

Abbey received her BA with honors (in Political Science and Latin American Studies) from Scripps College, and her MBA from the Kelley School of Business, Indiana University.

Elizabeth I. Pavageau

Chief Operating Officer

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As the Chief Operating Officer of Amplifier, Elizabeth Pavageau applies her extensive experience in growing the impact of global businesses to our team-focused social impact and strategic philanthropy. She is responsible for seamlessly scaling the teams, business processes and infrastructure, while deepening and expanding client relationships. With nearly two decades of experience in driving cross-functional alignment and facilitating successful global business efforts, Elizabeth excels in developing new business models and positioning companies for greater growth and impact.

A senior executive with expertise in business operations, sales, technology, customer support, finance and human resources, Elizabeth’s background encompasses global start-ups and corporations specializing in mobile, digital advertising and technology platforms. Prior to joining Amplifier, she served as Vice President of Ad Solutions for Placecast, launching the company’s successful mobile advertising line of business and generating over $5M in revenue within its first 18 months. She also served as Head of North America Business Strategy and Operations for InMobi, supporting the company’s 10x growth over four years. As Head of Finance and Business Operations for Datapop, she tightened the company’s finance and business operations processes to secure its Series A round.

Earlier in her career, Elizabeth held various sales and operations roles at Yahoo! and Hewlett-Packard, among others. A San Francisco resident, Elizabeth graduated from Duke University and earned her business degree from ESCP, one of the top business schools in Europe.

Kavita Gupta

Director of Investment

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At Amplifier, Kavita Gupta heads impact investments for philanthropists and family foundations who want to unleash and optimize impact outcomes while aligning profits and values in cutting-edge, mission-driven work. In 2015, Kavita was honored as the UN Social Finance Innovator of the Year. She serves on the boards of nearly a dozen impact-driven companies across the Middle East, South Asia and Africa. Kavita has more than a decade of impact investment and fixed income product innovation experience at McKinsey, The World Bank, HSBC, and IFC. She has been an integral part of the first green bond, carbon swap and social-impact bond teams at the World Bank and IFC. She also developed and headed The World Bank’s youth innovation fund. Kavita attended Harvard Business School and is an MIT media lab fellow. 

Kristin Coates

Director of Experiences

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As Director of Experiences, Kristin Coates connects philanthropists and impact investors in meaningful ways to deepen their connection to mission-driven work and outcomes. Before coming to Amplifier she operated Coates Consulting, a sustainable tourism company, for more than 15 years, which was an early mover in what is now a mainstream market. She has traveled to more than 50 countries.

Kristin has worked for the likes of Global Green USA, Global Possibilities, EMA and American Land Conservancy. She co-created a hospitality destination, Cavallo Point, within the Golden Gate National Parks, that eventually won a 65-year lease. She earned a bachelor’s degree in environmental studies from the University of Vermont, and added certifications in sustainable tourism from George Washington University and marketing from U.C. Berkeley.

Nicole Manapol

Uplift Initiative Program Manager

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Nicole Manapol is the adventurous type: In fact, her favorite hobby is getting lost and discovering new places wherever she goes from the California coast to the wilds of Guatemala, which speaks to her passion for new experiences.

Manapol spent two years in the Peace Corps after graduating from Georgetown University, an experience that became a springboard for the next decade of work in social enterprise and organizational capacity building. Her work has focused on cross-cultural communication, particularly with refugees, internally displaced peoples (IDPs) and indigenous groups. Prior to coming to Amplifier, Nicole worked as a program manager for four years with Women in Technology and then went to Australia to gain experience in community engagement.

Now, as our Consultant of Strategic Services, the New York native is focused on helping people reach their full potential. “I love this opportunity to create transformational change,” she says. Her future goals are especially appealing, like running a beachside cantina that serves her guilty pleasure of chicharrones, sardines and spicy vinegar.

Nicole Thompson

Strategic Services Manager

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Nicole prides herself on being opinionated. After all, it takes a strong personality to guide organizations through the ups and downs of rapid growth. As our Strategic Services Manager, she is uniquely qualified to organize our lively, fast-paced, energetic team.

“I fight entropy,” she says. “I herd cats. I watch and listen. I empathize and strategize. I analyze, plan, implement, measure, review and report. And then I start over again.”

Nicole is Amplifier’s fearless leader on the front lines of streamlining efficiency, promoting work-life balance and upholding policies that set the company up for success. Nicole began her career in international development consulting, working for Chemonics International in Washington, D.C. Between short-term engagements abroad, she honed her expertise in proposal development, financial management and training, mentoring scores of junior employees and becoming the youngest corporate financial reviewer in her company’s history.

She then earned an MBA from Duke’s Fuqua School of Business with a focus on social entrepreneurship. Her next post as a business advisor for a startup nonprofit took her first to Kenya for year and then back to the U.S., where she spent a year as the head of finance and operations for the fledgling organization. Here’s some valuable insider information: Nicole is our first point of reference in the recruitment and hiring of new talent. She’s also a grammar perfectionist. Take note future Amplifiers! She also applies her dedication to excellence in crafting home beer: Again, take note future Amplifiers.

Nicolas Funke

Lead Front-End Developer

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Like any number of San Francisco-based millennials, Nicolas Funke can work his way around a digital platform. But other than his title (Lead Front-End Developper) and his degrees (one of which is a major in computer science) there is nothing typical about a man whose skills as a DJ and music producer may outshine his formidable skills solving tech-related problems for Amplifier’s clientele.

After working for technology firms, the French native joined Amplifier to support its focus on positive change. “I love this job because I can put my skills to something meaningful and not the next dating app,” he says. He developed the Amplifier website, quickly putting his artistic stamp on the company.

Funke spends his free time teaching and practicing the martial art of Capoeira. He also loves music. If he suddenly discovered a hidden treasure, he would use the money to create “a free, highly curated music festival.” If he’s going to brag, it’s not about his significant contributions at Amplifier, but his ability to captivate an audience with music. And the one concert or event he’d dream of standing in line to see? Bob Marley jamming with Daniel Avery. Who wouldn’t?

Daniel Kessler

Lead Consultant, Strategic Communications

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Daniel coordinates Amplifier’s digital teams of strategists, writers, and designers to push innovation and deliver on-strategy communications products. Before coming to Amplifier, Daniel had several high profile jobs in the social sector, including with Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains, Greenpeace International, 350.org and Living Goods.

As communications director at Living Goods, Daniel oversaw all marketing for the dynamic social enterprise, managed press relations, and built its new website. At 350.org, Daniel helped to organize one of the largest climate change rallies in U.S. history, which brought over 50,000 people in 2012 to Washington, D.C. Daniel holds a B.A. in journalism from the University of Wyoming.

Vilia Ingriany

Digital Experience Design Lead Consultant

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Curiosity may have killed the proverbial cat, but it’s a good thing for Vilia Ingriany. Curiosity spurs creativity and problem solving in her role as a design lead, but also ignited her passion in impact-driven design that connects humans to technology. “I learned more about research and design principles on how humans and computers can work well together,” she says. With Amplifier, Vilia has jumped into the deep end of designing Impact Atlas, a pioneering platform that facilitate a program to help those in the remotest regions of the earth combat ultra poverty.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity to craft impactful work that directly touches lives,” she says. In her career, Vilia has led experience design projects and teams for leading digital agencies in U.S. and Canada. She has worked on client projects in healthcare and transportation industries among others, in defining their product experience strategy and design. The ideal vacation for this avid traveler would be time with her husband in parts unknown and decidedly not connected to the internet. The one thing she can’t disconnect is her curiosity, which may explain why in her spare time, “I like building something, (anything!) with random materials I can find,” she says.

Jill Minkus

Consultant, Family and Individual Philanthropy

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When it comes to local knowledge, you can’t get much better than Jill Minkus, a third-generation San Franciscan with a strong sense of place. But don’t think she’s only committed to this side of the Bay.

“I grew up in the city but I’m now a devoted Oakland resident of 12 years,” she says. Jill’s sense of place extends to Amplifier. She came aboard in 2008, which pretty much makes her the keeper of institutional knowledge for us all. She has worked with some of Amplifier’s closest partners. Jill helped build the thriving Erol Foundation from the ground up and designed Battery Powered’s organizational outreach, assessment and grantmaking.

As our Consultant of Family and Individual Philanthropy, she remains motivated by other team members. “Each is brilliant, dedicated, conscientious, humble and just plain nice to be around,” she says. After earning a master’s degree in Russian literature, Minkus shifted into nonprofit work. She and Allison’s work connection date back to a time when both worked for other organizations.

“I asked her for a reference and she offered me the gig,” Minkus said. She’s been a vital part of Amplifier’s growth ever since.

Barbie Lucio-Bartoli

Program Manager

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Barbie Lucio-Bartoli loves experiencing life. Case in point: the time she spent a night in the Sahara Desert and decided to roll down the massive sand dunes. When she took the job as Amplifier’s Program Manager for Battery Powered, she felt that everything came together, allowing her to spend her days sparking people’s passions for important causes.

Focusing on Battery Powered allows her to collaborate with inspiring people as they work toward making the world a better place. This speaker of four languages has always been driven to make a difference. She excelled in earning a master’s degree in change management and built a diverse resume working in social impact dating back to her college days.

“I’m driven to work on things that make me happy,” she says, “and I’ve always been driven to work on social impact.” When she’s not working, she spends time with her husband, often exploring the city without a specific destination in mind. “Everyday’s an adventure.” she says. She brings this adventurous mentality with her when she travels, always inclined to try new cuisines and converse with interesting strangers.

A. Scot Bolsinger

Senior Writer

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Scot Bolsinger has held many titles in his life that include, but are not limited to: Preacher. Entrepreneur. Failed Entrepreneur. Teacher. Sports Reporter. Political Reporter. Metro Columnist. City Editor. Entrepreneur, take two. Prison Reform Advocate. Author. Activist. “I really prefer just one: Human,” he says.

As Amplifier’s Senior Writer, Scot leads tone and messaging and holds the editorial line across communications projects for Amplifier and our clients. “Basically I annoy people and obsess about words,” he says.

During a decade-long journalism career he won more than two dozen press awards and helped lead a daily paper on the verge of extinction to best in class. Most recently, Scot was a scholarship recipient of the 2014 San Francisco Writers For Change Conference. He regularly collaborates and coaches groups of local writers. At Amplifier, he works to ensure we are delivering quality work and telling the most compelling stories about the stuff that really matters. “I feel I get to write about the most important stuff in the world,” he says, “with some of the most incredible people I’ve ever met.”

Outside of work a litany of hobbies keep him relentlessly busy, including cooking, hiking, snowboarding, surfing, yoga, guitar, laughing, watching movies and “hanging out with the homeless, addicts, convicts and other delightful people who are so much like me.”

Rahul Mitra

Consultant, Product Development

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Rahul Mitra is on a global mission to end poverty once and for all, but don’t think that he’s all work and no play. A talented project manager with a master’s degree in global human development, Rahul works as a Consultant and Product Developer for Amplifier.

In practice, that means managing technology projects both here and abroad. He’s spent the past seven years working with NGOs all across the globe. Talk about a world traveler: Rahul has been to a stunning 57 countries, and loves the fact that his career allows him to explore new cultures and meet interesting people. “I love that my job requires me to interact and work with people from very diverse backgrounds, scattered around the world,” he says.

With all this traveling, poverty fighting and meeting people, Rahul stays pretty busy – but he still finds time to explore his personal hobbies, which include playing guitar (he was in a heavy metal band in high school), reading and listening to Metallica (again with the metal).

Wendy Wecksell

Strategic Partnerships Lead

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Wendy Wecksell has a dream. “I want to make a phone call someday that literally changes the world for the better.” The pursuit of this dream—a dream of impact, generosity, discovery, change and a vital network that can carry it out—explains why Amplifier snagged her as our Strategic Partnerships Lead.

As a Teaching Fellow at Harvard University, Wendy advised more than 100 organizations working directly with “The Billionaire Whisperer” of philanthropy, Jennifer McCrea. She then became the Head of Strategic Relationships at Pencils of Promise. This New York City transplant who loves to travel is still adapting to life on the Left Coast.

Despite the big transition, life here is a natural fit for an extroverted theater major with a magnetic personality and relentless enthusiasm. She wakes up precisely at 6:04 a.m. every day … “And I love it!” she says. That’s before the coffee, no less. She is thrilled to have a job in which meeting new people and learning about their passions is on her to-do list every day.

Todd Thille

Lead Developer

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University of California, Berkeley, alumni Todd Thille learned much of what makes him so good at his current job while managing Utrecht Art Supplies in San Francisco, “hacking on the SCO Unix POS system in the backroom.” Those basic problem-solving skills remain the lynchpin of his work today as Amplifier’s Lead Developer. I

t’s not a pride thing, but he likes that tech problems rarely stump him. On the rare occasion that they do, he welcomes them. “I love solving a wide array of problems across an expanding set of technologies toward bettering the world. I love a new challenge that builds on previously solved ones.” In the ever-changing and constantly emerging field of tech, that’s a rare gift.

Todd was a contributor to the Drupal CMS project, and also built a modular web scraping tool to obtain user data from multiple NOAA regional monitoring systems. Todd’s fingerprints can be seen on every aspect of Amplifier’s digital presence, including video creation, a skill he developed in part due to his time shooting documentaries in places like East Africa and Eastern Europe. He now works remotely from Istanbul “while enjoying a view of the Bosphorus,” he says. Todd once made a cameo in Tears for Fears’ “Pale Shelter” video. As an experienced VJ, he won the one and only Maker Faire VJ Battle of 2006. Now that is a pride thing.

Aditi Shrivastava

Data Analyst

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Aditi is passionate about social justice. Even as a little girl, she day dreamed about how she would save the world. This passion has taken her to places as varied as direct work with children in a mental health facility, being a caseworker in a domestic violence shelter, and developing policy for one of the largest national anti-poverty programs prior to coming to Amplifier.

The anti-poverty program funded subsidized employment for over a quarter million hard-to-employ individuals at the peak of the recession. Aditi’s experiences in direct services led her to the realization that if folks on top don’t know what happens at the ground level, effective service provision simply can’t happen. So when she got her master’s in social work from Columbia University, she deliberately kept a macro-focus, using data and policy to move impact organizations towards becoming more professional and efficient. Outside of work,

Aditi enjoys cooking (and eating!) vegetarian food, writing and reading, and learning more about all the innovative ways people are making a difference in this world. This keen interest in learning has taken her to Uganda, India and Kenya to gain firsthand insights into public health interventions and projects aimed at economic empowerment.

Sarah Oldenburg

Lead Designer

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It takes a certain level of patience to be a designer, and Sarah Oldenburg has it. “I once drove cross country with my cat on my lap, who never stopped meowing,” she says. That’s patience.

It’s a trait that will serve the East Coast native well here as part of the incredible, demanding nature of work her team does every day. “I love that I am now able to design and work with foundations that I know are making a greater impact in the world, and I can directly be a part of that,” she says.

Sarah spent 10 years working in design and building her skills. To her, graphic design is a medium for organized, digestible communication. “I help people present themselves and communicate visually,” she says. When she’s not creating elegant design materials for Amplifier, she can be found across the Bay in Oakland, where she lives with her husband and her (very vocal) cat. When she thinks about the future, she can’t help but feel the call to travel. After spending three amazing weeks in Italy with her husband, she’s been bitten by the travel bug and can’t wait to cross off more places on her list.

Julia Indovina

Lead Production Manager, Strategic Services

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Fulfilling job? Check. Successful career in philanthropy and social impact? Check. Master’s degree? Check. Clearly, Julia Indovina accomplishments speak for themselves but are still often upstaged by … chickens. Yes, chickens. She’s used to it. Whenever friends introduce her, they say, “This is Julia, she’s the one with chickens on her roof.” It’s a conversation starter, to be sure, and Julia is someone worth getting to know.

Julia’s role as Amplifier’s Lead Production Manager allows her to combine her diverse talents and experience with people and process to ensure smooth sailing and maximum social impact for all agency projects. “It’s a bit like air traffic control to ensure all projects are on track, on schedule and clear of any obstacles,” she says.

Her experience includes more than 12 years at the strategic level with foundations, policymakers, nonprofits and corporate social responsibility partners to develop networks and implement systems of effective communication towards positive change. Previously she was ZeroDivide’s Director of Marketing following work with diverse organizations like Northern California Grantmakers, Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council, the Institute of Politics and Donors Forum of Illinois.

Julia applies her management skills to help develop strategies outside of work as well, especially focused on food security. She recently served as the Board President of City Slicker Farms, an urban farming organization in West Oakland (which may just have something to do with those chickens.)

Amplifier allows her to use her network, skills and expertise in a comprehensive new way. She plays a vital role in communication and planning across departments and allocating resources. In a constantly evolving list of priorities, Julia is nimble and encouraging when it’s needed most. “I love so much about this job,” she says. “The team, the range of projects we are working on, the scale of impact we’re having. It’s incredible.”

Wren Brennan

Associate Consultant, Content Strategy

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Wren Brennan has heard them. Trust her. She knows Kevin Bacon had the same name in “Footloose,” and she knows all about “Ren and Stimpy.” So despite her memorable name, let’s dig deeper, because as a Content Strategy Associate Consultant here at Amplifier, she knows the power of a story well-told.

“Storytelling is a great tool for making a positive change in the world, but also for getting things done,” she says. As a writer, she has helped raise funds for important causes, produced a student-run magazine and shed light on issues like reproductive rights, education and climate change. She came to Amplifier to use her skills to tell stories that media and reporting weren’t covering. Her artistic mindset blends nicely with precision, punctuality and organization, making her a true asset to the team-centered approach here at Amplifier.

She writes, edits and adapts copy for video, print and online. Wren’s writer instincts started young. Childhood interactions with stories made an indelible impression, as was the case with her favorite book, “The Golden Compass,” and her favorite movie, “The Princess Bride.” If she ever wins an Academy Award for screenwriting, she’ll be sure to thank, among others, “my pre-school, which was such a great time that I still remember it!” See what we mean about her recall? A writer’s gift to be sure.

Tara O’Shea

Consultant, Strategic Services

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Tara O’Shea is a bread and butter kind of gal. No, we don’t mean bland, not at all. She’s anything but. But her favorite food is bread and butter. “I’m serious,” she says. No apologies necessary.

Simple excellence is always in fashion, and perhaps that’s a sneak peek into why Tara is so appreciated as a Strategic Services Consultant. Her work on the bread butter needs of sustainability never goes out of style or need.

“I’m passionate about the intersection between environmental management and economic development,” she says. Tara has a master’s degree in environmental management and a graduate certificate in international development policy. She is a published author in the peer-reviewed journal Business Strategy and the Environment and helped launch Standfortrees.org with the United States Agency for International Development. She has spoken on four continents about these critical topics.

Systems thinking, she says, is critical to discovering audacious solutions. “I think many of the challenges we face are connected,” she says. “We can’t look at them in isolation.”

At Amplifier, she can work with others from various disciplines to discover new sustainability solutions. “I’m always learning and growing from their diverse perspectives,” she says. Tara loves learning. Whether it’s learning to surf or discovering new ways to make a lasting impact on the planet, she is up for the challenge.

Maria Caprio

Lead Consultant

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Maybe at some point everyone thinks about packing in their well-paying job and hitting the road. Unlike everyone, Maria Caprio is one who did it. She interrupted her career for a self-financed three years of international travel and volunteer work. She visited 30 countries and pursued lifelong goals that included: summiting two 18,000-ft. peaks in the Himalayas, navigating across Mongolia on horseback, working as Dive Instructor in Cartagena, Colombia, and traveling on her own across Southeast Asia, Central Asia and South America.

Her career spans philanthropy, impact investing, state-level policymaking, grassroots health advocacy, global business development and finance. An avid social justice advocate and strategist, Maria seeks to inspire, educate and connect individuals and communities to innovative effective mission-driven causes. She has high standards, which is precisely why this former investment banker and director of a vital nonprofit came to Amplifier as a Lead Consultant.

Here, she partners with clients to develop strategic impact investing frameworks that increase positive social and environmental change. She loves seeing results “almost immediately” and working with “amazing change makers.”

Before coming to Amplifier, Maria was the director of a grassroots advocacy program, Shanti’s Margot Murphy Women’s Cancer Program. As a Women’s Policy Institute Fellow with the Women’s Foundation of California, she crafted a bipartisan lobby coalition in support of the Healthy Babies Act of 2014, which became law. She has been diving into the deep-end of life for as long as she can remember. “I’m getting to do things I never imagined being able to do,” she said.

Bill Coffin

Accounting Manager

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Bill’s hometown is San Diego. Few things in life compare with hanging with family on a beach. “I enjoy simplicity,” he says, “like hot dogs, a carne asada burrito, watching my boys play in the shore break.”

The San Diego State grad likes to keep his job as Accounting Manager simple as well. “I do number crunching along with data grinding in conjunction with process development with a goal to generate business intelligence.” Uh … well maybe not that simple, but it is effective.

Bill keeps the numbers aligned and on-track in a fluid emerging business environment. His jobs have included everything from working in small-business startups to managing millions of dollars in assets. He has a deep appreciation for thoughtful process and data flow which, when done well, make everything … well, simpler.

His personal goals boil down to a single word: “Evolution. I just want to do my part and move forward, and hopefully, be a better person on the other side.” Bill’s friends know him for his off-kilter humor. “At times it can be quite dark,” he says. It makes sense then that he loves satirical movies and is usually ready with “a quote to match.”

Garance Rey

Market Research Analyst

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Though Garance Rey is new to San Francisco, the French native already has her San Francisco Giants walk-up song picked out. Garance worked in Africa for the World Bank Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative, where she worked to ensure transparency. After completing a master’s degree back home and working with NGOs in developing countries, she accepted an internship at Amplifier to enhance her business skills and broaden her experience.

As a vital connection between Amplifier’s San Francisco and Paris offices, Garance brings first-hand knowledge to preparations for Paris-based events. As a key part of the team working on our Climate and Capital Initiative, Garance helps develop investment research in the low-carbon economy.

“I am always learning here to be proactive, self-rewarding and useful at the end of each day,” she says. Someday she simply wants to travel around the world sailing. She’s also learning Romanian, which would be yet another new language spoken among Amplifier staff. As we said, she fits in just fine.

Her artistic mindset blends nicely with precision, punctuality and organization, making her a true asset to the team-centered approach here at Amplifier. She writes, edits and adapts copy for video, print and online. Wren’s writer instincts started young. Childhood interactions with stories made an indelible impression, as was the case with her favorite book, “The Golden Compass,” and her favorite movie, “The Princess Bride.”

If she ever wins an Academy Award for screenwriting, she’ll be sure to thank, among others, “my pre-school, which was such a great time that I still remember it!” See what we mean about her recall? A writer’s gift to be sure.

Candice Lee

Executive Assistant

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Candice Lee is a rare gem. Seriously. She’s an ENTJ on the Myers-Briggs Scale, which accounts for only 3 percent of the female population. Beyond that, she’s a rare talent who, as the Executive Assistant to Founder Allison Duncan, juggles more balls than a busker at Pier 39.

She has worked with high-level executives in various fields to further add to her rare expertise. “I assist in steering this ship through uncharted and awe-inspiring waters,” she says. Her master’s degree in psychology (she also has a master’s degree in art history) surely comes into play in helping to navigate the eclectic, talented people who collectively make Amplifier what it is. Though some might find that a difficult challenge,

Candice insists it’s the best part of her job. “I love the people!” she says. Candice married a Brit who once owned a pub, and her dream would be to own a vineyard. “I could subsist on a diet of Champagne alone,” she jokes. Her thirst for life and adventure is real. An ideal vacation? “An African safari,” she says. Candice is, indeed, a rare one. Delightfully rare.

Yulia Markina

Associate Web Developer

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Yulia creates responsive user-friendly websites for Amplifier and its partner using JavaScript, jQuery, PHP, HTML, and CSS. Yulia is a self taught developer who earned a Ph.D. in telecommunications at Taganrog Institute of Technology in Russia and has a degree in engineering. Yulia came to Amplifier as an intern and has since been promoted to full-time permanent staff. She speaks Russian, English and is learning Spanish.

Allison Duncan

Founder and CEO

“Ask me about the power of mission-driven work to effect lasting impact.”

Allison Duncan is an industry leader and advisor to global changemakers on philanthropy, impact investing and social entrepreneurship. Her passion to modernize philanthropy and make a difference on the world’s most urgent challenges led her to launch Amplifier to build and scale mission-driven programs. Since its inception in 2007, Amplifier has offered a partnership with an integrated team that imagines, designs and implements strategies that change social and economic systems. By activating capital, building strategic capabilities and inspiring networks, Amplifier aims to achieve audacious results in our lifetime.

Since 2007, Amplifier has activated more than $500 million and launched new ventures, portfolio strategies, and cutting-edge solutions for influential foundations and organizations around the world. Its clients include the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Erol Foundation, The Skoll Foundation, The Libra Foundation, Battery Powered, Arcus Foundation, Resources Legacy Fund, Swift Foundation, BRAC, Barefoot College and The Nature Conservancy, among others.

Allison began her career in philanthropy with the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. She served as the Program Director for a $400 million environmental investment and as the Director of Program Finance, where she created a practice to conduct due diligence, measure outcomes, and structure $1 billion in grants and program-related investments. Prior to joining the Moore Foundation, Allison worked at Deloitte in the Carolinas, Russia, New York and Silicon Valley

Chantal Buard

Head of Digital

“Ask me about the power of digital to transform lives.”

As a Partner and Head of Digital at Amplifier, Chantal Buard use the power of visual storytelling and technology solutions to accelerate the work of mission-drive organizations. She oversees a staff of designers, developers and content strategists to build effective and inspiring digital and communications products. In addition to steering visual design, Chantal leads both the engineering and the digital product development teams. Chantal has more than 20 years of experience in digital media production, combined with a lifelong interest in mission-driven work.

Before coming to Amplifier, Chantal founded Mana Productions in 2005, an audiovisual and design production company based in San Francisco, which merged with Amplifier in 2012. As a Media Producer for NBC/Quokka Ventures, she co-produced the online version of NBC’s coverage of the Sydney and Salt Lake City Olympics. Her expertise in design and video revolutionized the use of the Internet as an integral part of a worldwide media event.

Chantal’s diverse experience includes extended time in Tanzania where her documentary stories were featured by France Television. Through the non-profit Picture Earth, she worked to popularize the work of the world-renowned French photographer Yann Arthus-Bertrand in the U.S. Chantal graduated from the Sorbonne and holds an MBA from IAE, Aix en Provence and York University, Toronto, specializing in Media and Arts Management. Originally from Paris, France, Chantal has been living in San Francisco for nearly 20 years.

 

Abbey Banks

Director of Philanthropy

“Ask me about how modern philanthropy is a force for good.”

As Director of Family and Individual Philanthropy, Abbey Banks has been at the forefront of Amplifier’s innovative programs that connect people to others and the mission-driven work that inspires them. She and her team designed, launched and grew Battery Powered, which has grown to more than 650 members contributing more than $8 million to mission-driven organizations in just two years of its existence.

Abbey’s career began in tech startups and learned how to bring new ideas to new audiences. Prior to coming to Amplifier, Abbey was the Director of Membership at Net Impact. Under her leadership membership grew by 60 percent to 15,000 members. It doubled the size of the chapter network to exceed 200 chapters and opened up international expansion in Asia, Latin America and Africa. At the East Bay Community Foundation, she led donor engagement programs to build giving communities for impact.

Abbey received her BA with honors (in Political Science and Latin American Studies) from Scripps College, and her MBA from the Kelley School of Business, Indiana University.

Elizabeth I. Pavageau

Chief Operating Officer

As the Chief Operating Officer of Amplifier, Elizabeth Pavageau applies her extensive experience in growing the impact of global businesses to our team-focused social impact and strategic philanthropy. She is responsible for seamlessly scaling the teams, business processes and infrastructure, while deepening and expanding client relationships. With nearly two decades of experience in driving cross-functional alignment and facilitating successful global business efforts, Elizabeth excels in developing new business models and positioning companies for greater growth and impact.

A senior executive with expertise in business operations, sales, technology, customer support, finance and human resources, Elizabeth’s background encompasses global start-ups and corporations specializing in mobile, digital advertising and technology platforms. Prior to joining Amplifier, she served as Vice President of Ad Solutions for Placecast, launching the company’s successful mobile advertising line of business and generating over $5M in revenue within its first 18 months. She also served as Head of North America Business Strategy and Operations for InMobi, supporting the company’s 10x growth over four years. As Head of Finance and Business Operations for Datapop, she tightened the company’s finance and business operations processes to secure its Series A round.

Earlier in her career, Elizabeth held various sales and operations roles at Yahoo! and Hewlett-Packard, among others. A San Francisco resident, Elizabeth graduated from Duke University and earned her business degree from ESCP, one of the top business schools in Europe.

Kavita Gupta

Director of Investment

“Ask me about how impact investing is reshaping the world for the better.”

At Amplifier, Kavita Gupta heads impact investments for philanthropists and family foundations who want to unleash and optimize impact outcomes while aligning profits and values in cutting-edge, mission-driven work. In 2015, Kavita was honored as the UN Social Finance Innovator of the Year. She serves on the boards of nearly a dozen impact-driven companies across the Middle East, South Asia and Africa. Kavita has more than a decade of impact investment and fixed income product innovation experience at McKinsey, The World Bank, HSBC, and IFC. She has been an integral part of the first green bond, carbon swap and social-impact bond teams at the World Bank and IFC. She also developed and headed The World Bank’s youth innovation fund. Kavita attended Harvard Business School and is an MIT media lab fellow. 

Kristin Coates

Director of Experiences

“Ask me about using the power of experience to drive lasting social change.”

As Director of Experiences, Kristin Coates connects philanthropists and impact investors in meaningful ways to deepen their connection to mission-driven work and outcomes. Before coming to Amplifier she operated Coates Consulting, a sustainable tourism company, for more than 15 years, which was an early mover in what is now a mainstream market. She has traveled to more than 50 countries.

Kristin has worked for the likes of Global Green USA, Global Possibilities, EMA and American Land Conservancy. She co-created a hospitality destination, Cavallo Point, within the Golden Gate National Parks, that eventually won a 65-year lease. She earned a bachelor’s degree in environmental studies from the University of Vermont, and added certifications in sustainable tourism from George Washington University and marketing from U.C. Berkeley.

Nicole Manapol

Uplift Initiative Program Manager

“Ask me about the importance of cross-cultural connections.”

Nicole Manapol is the adventurous type: In fact, her favorite hobby is getting lost and discovering new places wherever she goes from the California coast to the wilds of Guatemala, which speaks to her passion for new experiences.

Manapol spent two years in the Peace Corps after graduating from Georgetown University, an experience that became a springboard for the next decade of work in social enterprise and organizational capacity building. Her work has focused on cross-cultural communication, particularly with refugees, internally displaced peoples (IDPs) and indigenous groups. Prior to coming to Amplifier, Nicole worked as a program manager for four years with Women in Technology and then went to Australia to gain experience in community engagement.

Now, as our Consultant of Strategic Services, the New York native is focused on helping people reach their full potential. “I love this opportunity to create transformational change,” she says. Her future goals are especially appealing, like running a beachside cantina that serves her guilty pleasure of chicharrones, sardines and spicy vinegar.

Nicole Thompson

Strategic Services Manager

“Ask me how great organization helps to build great organizations.”

Nicole prides herself on being opinionated. After all, it takes a strong personality to guide organizations through the ups and downs of rapid growth. As our Strategic Services Manager, she is uniquely qualified to organize our lively, fast-paced, energetic team.

“I fight entropy,” she says. “I herd cats. I watch and listen. I empathize and strategize. I analyze, plan, implement, measure, review and report. And then I start over again.”

Nicole is Amplifier’s fearless leader on the front lines of streamlining efficiency, promoting work-life balance and upholding policies that set the company up for success. Nicole began her career in international development consulting, working for Chemonics International in Washington, D.C. Between short-term engagements abroad, she honed her expertise in proposal development, financial management and training, mentoring scores of junior employees and becoming the youngest corporate financial reviewer in her company’s history.

She then earned an MBA from Duke’s Fuqua School of Business with a focus on social entrepreneurship. Her next post as a business advisor for a startup nonprofit took her first to Kenya for year and then back to the U.S., where she spent a year as the head of finance and operations for the fledgling organization. Here’s some valuable insider information: Nicole is our first point of reference in the recruitment and hiring of new talent. She’s also a grammar perfectionist. Take note future Amplifiers! She also applies her dedication to excellence in crafting home beer: Again, take note future Amplifiers.

Nicolas Funke

Lead Front-End Developer

“Ask me about how the power of now sparks creativity and impact.”

Like any number of San Francisco-based millennials, Nicolas Funke can work his way around a digital platform. But other than his title (Lead Front-End Developper) and his degrees (one of which is a major in computer science) there is nothing typical about a man whose skills as a DJ and music producer may outshine his formidable skills solving tech-related problems for Amplifier’s clientele.

After working for technology firms, the French native joined Amplifier to support its focus on positive change. “I love this job because I can put my skills to something meaningful and not the next dating app,” he says. He developed the Amplifier website, quickly putting his artistic stamp on the company.

Funke spends his free time teaching and practicing the martial art of Capoeira. He also loves music. If he suddenly discovered a hidden treasure, he would use the money to create “a free, highly curated music festival.” If he’s going to brag, it’s not about his significant contributions at Amplifier, but his ability to captivate an audience with music. And the one concert or event he’d dream of standing in line to see? Bob Marley jamming with Daniel Avery. Who wouldn’t?

Daniel Kessler

Lead Consultant, Strategic Communications

“Ask me how powerful storytelling and digital tools can lead to systemic change.”

Daniel coordinates Amplifier’s digital teams of strategists, writers, and designers to push innovation and deliver on-strategy communications products. Before coming to Amplifier, Daniel had several high profile jobs in the social sector, including with Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains, Greenpeace International, 350.org and Living Goods.

As communications director at Living Goods, Daniel oversaw all marketing for the dynamic social enterprise, managed press relations, and built its new website. At 350.org, Daniel helped to organize one of the largest climate change rallies in U.S. history, which brought over 50,000 people in 2012 to Washington, D.C. Daniel holds a B.A. in journalism from the University of Wyoming.

Vilia Ingriany

Digital Experience Design Lead Consultant

“Ask me about bridging the online and offline experience.”

Curiosity may have killed the proverbial cat, but it’s a good thing for Vilia Ingriany. Curiosity spurs creativity and problem solving in her role as a design lead, but also ignited her passion in impact-driven design that connects humans to technology. “I learned more about research and design principles on how humans and computers can work well together,” she says. With Amplifier, Vilia has jumped into the deep end of designing Impact Atlas, a pioneering platform that facilitate a program to help those in the remotest regions of the earth combat ultra poverty.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity to craft impactful work that directly touches lives,” she says. In her career, Vilia has led experience design projects and teams for leading digital agencies in U.S. and Canada. She has worked on client projects in healthcare and transportation industries among others, in defining their product experience strategy and design. The ideal vacation for this avid traveler would be time with her husband in parts unknown and decidedly not connected to the internet. The one thing she can’t disconnect is her curiosity, which may explain why in her spare time, “I like building something, (anything!) with random materials I can find,” she says.

Jill Minkus

Consultant, Family and Individual Philanthropy

“Ask me about what we talk about when we talk about impact potential.”

When it comes to local knowledge, you can’t get much better than Jill Minkus, a third-generation San Franciscan with a strong sense of place. But don’t think she’s only committed to this side of the Bay.

“I grew up in the city but I’m now a devoted Oakland resident of 12 years,” she says. Jill’s sense of place extends to Amplifier. She came aboard in 2008, which pretty much makes her the keeper of institutional knowledge for us all. She has worked with some of Amplifier’s closest partners. Jill helped build the thriving Erol Foundation from the ground up and designed Battery Powered’s organizational outreach, assessment and grantmaking.

As our Consultant of Family and Individual Philanthropy, she remains motivated by other team members. “Each is brilliant, dedicated, conscientious, humble and just plain nice to be around,” she says. After earning a master’s degree in Russian literature, Minkus shifted into nonprofit work. She and Allison’s work connection date back to a time when both worked for other organizations.

“I asked her for a reference and she offered me the gig,” Minkus said. She’s been a vital part of Amplifier’s growth ever since.

Barbie Lucio-Bartoli

Program Manager

“Ask me about how to activate generosity in large, diverse networks.”

Barbie Lucio-Bartoli loves experiencing life. Case in point: the time she spent a night in the Sahara Desert and decided to roll down the massive sand dunes. When she took the job as Amplifier’s Program Manager for Battery Powered, she felt that everything came together, allowing her to spend her days sparking people’s passions for important causes.

Focusing on Battery Powered allows her to collaborate with inspiring people as they work toward making the world a better place. This speaker of four languages has always been driven to make a difference. She excelled in earning a master’s degree in change management and built a diverse resume working in social impact dating back to her college days.

“I’m driven to work on things that make me happy,” she says, “and I’ve always been driven to work on social impact.” When she’s not working, she spends time with her husband, often exploring the city without a specific destination in mind. “Everyday’s an adventure.” she says. She brings this adventurous mentality with her when she travels, always inclined to try new cuisines and converse with interesting strangers.

A. Scot Bolsinger

Senior Writer

“Ask me about the transformative power of stories.”

Scot Bolsinger has held many titles in his life that include, but are not limited to: Preacher. Entrepreneur. Failed Entrepreneur. Teacher. Sports Reporter. Political Reporter. Metro Columnist. City Editor. Entrepreneur, take two. Prison Reform Advocate. Author. Activist. “I really prefer just one: Human,” he says.

As Amplifier’s Senior Writer, Scot leads tone and messaging and holds the editorial line across communications projects for Amplifier and our clients. “Basically I annoy people and obsess about words,” he says.

During a decade-long journalism career he won more than two dozen press awards and helped lead a daily paper on the verge of extinction to best in class. Most recently, Scot was a scholarship recipient of the 2014 San Francisco Writers For Change Conference. He regularly collaborates and coaches groups of local writers. At Amplifier, he works to ensure we are delivering quality work and telling the most compelling stories about the stuff that really matters. “I feel I get to write about the most important stuff in the world,” he says, “with some of the most incredible people I’ve ever met.”

Outside of work a litany of hobbies keep him relentlessly busy, including cooking, hiking, snowboarding, surfing, yoga, guitar, laughing, watching movies and “hanging out with the homeless, addicts, convicts and other delightful people who are so much like me.”

Rahul Mitra

Consultant, Product Development

“Ask me how technology is driving efficiency and scale in the field.”

Rahul Mitra is on a global mission to end poverty once and for all, but don’t think that he’s all work and no play. A talented project manager with a master’s degree in global human development, Rahul works as a Consultant and Product Developer for Amplifier.

In practice, that means managing technology projects both here and abroad. He’s spent the past seven years working with NGOs all across the globe. Talk about a world traveler: Rahul has been to a stunning 57 countries, and loves the fact that his career allows him to explore new cultures and meet interesting people. “I love that my job requires me to interact and work with people from very diverse backgrounds, scattered around the world,” he says.

With all this traveling, poverty fighting and meeting people, Rahul stays pretty busy – but he still finds time to explore his personal hobbies, which include playing guitar (he was in a heavy metal band in high school), reading and listening to Metallica (again with the metal).

Wendy Wecksell

Strategic Partnerships Lead

“Ask me more about why. This is where we really get to know each other.”

Wendy Wecksell has a dream. “I want to make a phone call someday that literally changes the world for the better.” The pursuit of this dream—a dream of impact, generosity, discovery, change and a vital network that can carry it out—explains why Amplifier snagged her as our Strategic Partnerships Lead.

As a Teaching Fellow at Harvard University, Wendy advised more than 100 organizations working directly with “The Billionaire Whisperer” of philanthropy, Jennifer McCrea. She then became the Head of Strategic Relationships at Pencils of Promise. This New York City transplant who loves to travel is still adapting to life on the Left Coast.

Despite the big transition, life here is a natural fit for an extroverted theater major with a magnetic personality and relentless enthusiasm. She wakes up precisely at 6:04 a.m. every day … “And I love it!” she says. That’s before the coffee, no less. She is thrilled to have a job in which meeting new people and learning about their passions is on her to-do list every day.

Todd Thille

Lead Developer

“Ask me about how digital design can be applied to mission-driven work.”

University of California, Berkeley, alumni Todd Thille learned much of what makes him so good at his current job while managing Utrecht Art Supplies in San Francisco, “hacking on the SCO Unix POS system in the backroom.” Those basic problem-solving skills remain the lynchpin of his work today as Amplifier’s Lead Developer. I

t’s not a pride thing, but he likes that tech problems rarely stump him. On the rare occasion that they do, he welcomes them. “I love solving a wide array of problems across an expanding set of technologies toward bettering the world. I love a new challenge that builds on previously solved ones.” In the ever-changing and constantly emerging field of tech, that’s a rare gift.

Todd was a contributor to the Drupal CMS project, and also built a modular web scraping tool to obtain user data from multiple NOAA regional monitoring systems. Todd’s fingerprints can be seen on every aspect of Amplifier’s digital presence, including video creation, a skill he developed in part due to his time shooting documentaries in places like East Africa and Eastern Europe. He now works remotely from Istanbul “while enjoying a view of the Bosphorus,” he says. Todd once made a cameo in Tears for Fears’ “Pale Shelter” video. As an experienced VJ, he won the one and only Maker Faire VJ Battle of 2006. Now that is a pride thing.

Aditi Shrivastava

Data Analyst

“Ask me about bridging the gap between the realities of the field and influence holders.”

Aditi is passionate about social justice. Even as a little girl, she day dreamed about how she would save the world. This passion has taken her to places as varied as direct work with children in a mental health facility, being a caseworker in a domestic violence shelter, and developing policy for one of the largest national anti-poverty programs prior to coming to Amplifier.

The anti-poverty program funded subsidized employment for over a quarter million hard-to-employ individuals at the peak of the recession. Aditi’s experiences in direct services led her to the realization that if folks on top don’t know what happens at the ground level, effective service provision simply can’t happen. So when she got her master’s in social work from Columbia University, she deliberately kept a macro-focus, using data and policy to move impact organizations towards becoming more professional and efficient. Outside of work,

Aditi enjoys cooking (and eating!) vegetarian food, writing and reading, and learning more about all the innovative ways people are making a difference in this world. This keen interest in learning has taken her to Uganda, India and Kenya to gain firsthand insights into public health interventions and projects aimed at economic empowerment.

Sarah Oldenburg

Lead Designer

“Ask me about what digital design can do for you.”

It takes a certain level of patience to be a designer, and Sarah Oldenburg has it. “I once drove cross country with my cat on my lap, who never stopped meowing,” she says. That’s patience.

It’s a trait that will serve the East Coast native well here as part of the incredible, demanding nature of work her team does every day. “I love that I am now able to design and work with foundations that I know are making a greater impact in the world, and I can directly be a part of that,” she says.

Sarah spent 10 years working in design and building her skills. To her, graphic design is a medium for organized, digestible communication. “I help people present themselves and communicate visually,” she says. When she’s not creating elegant design materials for Amplifier, she can be found across the Bay in Oakland, where she lives with her husband and her (very vocal) cat. When she thinks about the future, she can’t help but feel the call to travel. After spending three amazing weeks in Italy with her husband, she’s been bitten by the travel bug and can’t wait to cross off more places on her list.

Julia Indovina

Lead Production Manager, Strategic Services

“Ask me about how smart organization boosts capabilities.”

Fulfilling job? Check. Successful career in philanthropy and social impact? Check. Master’s degree? Check. Clearly, Julia Indovina accomplishments speak for themselves but are still often upstaged by … chickens. Yes, chickens. She’s used to it. Whenever friends introduce her, they say, “This is Julia, she’s the one with chickens on her roof.” It’s a conversation starter, to be sure, and Julia is someone worth getting to know.

Julia’s role as Amplifier’s Lead Production Manager allows her to combine her diverse talents and experience with people and process to ensure smooth sailing and maximum social impact for all agency projects. “It’s a bit like air traffic control to ensure all projects are on track, on schedule and clear of any obstacles,” she says.

Her experience includes more than 12 years at the strategic level with foundations, policymakers, nonprofits and corporate social responsibility partners to develop networks and implement systems of effective communication towards positive change. Previously she was ZeroDivide’s Director of Marketing following work with diverse organizations like Northern California Grantmakers, Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council, the Institute of Politics and Donors Forum of Illinois.

Julia applies her management skills to help develop strategies outside of work as well, especially focused on food security. She recently served as the Board President of City Slicker Farms, an urban farming organization in West Oakland (which may just have something to do with those chickens.)

Amplifier allows her to use her network, skills and expertise in a comprehensive new way. She plays a vital role in communication and planning across departments and allocating resources. In a constantly evolving list of priorities, Julia is nimble and encouraging when it’s needed most. “I love so much about this job,” she says. “The team, the range of projects we are working on, the scale of impact we’re having. It’s incredible.”

Wren Brennan

Associate Consultant, Content Strategy

“Ask me about the issues I really care about.”

Wren Brennan has heard them. Trust her. She knows Kevin Bacon had the same name in “Footloose,” and she knows all about “Ren and Stimpy.” So despite her memorable name, let’s dig deeper, because as a Content Strategy Associate Consultant here at Amplifier, she knows the power of a story well-told.

“Storytelling is a great tool for making a positive change in the world, but also for getting things done,” she says. As a writer, she has helped raise funds for important causes, produced a student-run magazine and shed light on issues like reproductive rights, education and climate change. She came to Amplifier to use her skills to tell stories that media and reporting weren’t covering. Her artistic mindset blends nicely with precision, punctuality and organization, making her a true asset to the team-centered approach here at Amplifier.

She writes, edits and adapts copy for video, print and online. Wren’s writer instincts started young. Childhood interactions with stories made an indelible impression, as was the case with her favorite book, “The Golden Compass,” and her favorite movie, “The Princess Bride.” If she ever wins an Academy Award for screenwriting, she’ll be sure to thank, among others, “my pre-school, which was such a great time that I still remember it!” See what we mean about her recall? A writer’s gift to be sure.

Tara O’Shea

Consultant, Strategic Services

“Ask me about building a more sustainable pathway to economic development.”

Tara O’Shea is a bread and butter kind of gal. No, we don’t mean bland, not at all. She’s anything but. But her favorite food is bread and butter. “I’m serious,” she says. No apologies necessary.

Simple excellence is always in fashion, and perhaps that’s a sneak peek into why Tara is so appreciated as a Strategic Services Consultant. Her work on the bread butter needs of sustainability never goes out of style or need.

“I’m passionate about the intersection between environmental management and economic development,” she says. Tara has a master’s degree in environmental management and a graduate certificate in international development policy. She is a published author in the peer-reviewed journal Business Strategy and the Environment and helped launch Standfortrees.org with the United States Agency for International Development. She has spoken on four continents about these critical topics.

Systems thinking, she says, is critical to discovering audacious solutions. “I think many of the challenges we face are connected,” she says. “We can’t look at them in isolation.”

At Amplifier, she can work with others from various disciplines to discover new sustainability solutions. “I’m always learning and growing from their diverse perspectives,” she says. Tara loves learning. Whether it’s learning to surf or discovering new ways to make a lasting impact on the planet, she is up for the challenge.

Maria Caprio

Lead Consultant

“Ask me about being generous and compassionate.”

Maybe at some point everyone thinks about packing in their well-paying job and hitting the road. Unlike everyone, Maria Caprio is one who did it. She interrupted her career for a self-financed three years of international travel and volunteer work. She visited 30 countries and pursued lifelong goals that included: summiting two 18,000-ft. peaks in the Himalayas, navigating across Mongolia on horseback, working as Dive Instructor in Cartagena, Colombia, and traveling on her own across Southeast Asia, Central Asia and South America.

Her career spans philanthropy, impact investing, state-level policymaking, grassroots health advocacy, global business development and finance. An avid social justice advocate and strategist, Maria seeks to inspire, educate and connect individuals and communities to innovative effective mission-driven causes. She has high standards, which is precisely why this former investment banker and director of a vital nonprofit came to Amplifier as a Lead Consultant.

Here, she partners with clients to develop strategic impact investing frameworks that increase positive social and environmental change. She loves seeing results “almost immediately” and working with “amazing change makers.”

Before coming to Amplifier, Maria was the director of a grassroots advocacy program, Shanti’s Margot Murphy Women’s Cancer Program. As a Women’s Policy Institute Fellow with the Women’s Foundation of California, she crafted a bipartisan lobby coalition in support of the Healthy Babies Act of 2014, which became law. She has been diving into the deep-end of life for as long as she can remember. “I’m getting to do things I never imagined being able to do,” she said.

Bill Coffin

Accounting Manager

“Ask me about how financial data can reshape your impact.”

Bill’s hometown is San Diego. Few things in life compare with hanging with family on a beach. “I enjoy simplicity,” he says, “like hot dogs, a carne asada burrito, watching my boys play in the shore break.”

The San Diego State grad likes to keep his job as Accounting Manager simple as well. “I do number crunching along with data grinding in conjunction with process development with a goal to generate business intelligence.” Uh … well maybe not that simple, but it is effective.

Bill keeps the numbers aligned and on-track in a fluid emerging business environment. His jobs have included everything from working in small-business startups to managing millions of dollars in assets. He has a deep appreciation for thoughtful process and data flow which, when done well, make everything … well, simpler.

His personal goals boil down to a single word: “Evolution. I just want to do my part and move forward, and hopefully, be a better person on the other side.” Bill’s friends know him for his off-kilter humor. “At times it can be quite dark,” he says. It makes sense then that he loves satirical movies and is usually ready with “a quote to match.”

Garance Rey

Market Research Analyst

“Ask me about how impact investing is becoming more mainstream and effective.”

Though Garance Rey is new to San Francisco, the French native already has her San Francisco Giants walk-up song picked out. Garance worked in Africa for the World Bank Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative, where she worked to ensure transparency. After completing a master’s degree back home and working with NGOs in developing countries, she accepted an internship at Amplifier to enhance her business skills and broaden her experience.

As a vital connection between Amplifier’s San Francisco and Paris offices, Garance brings first-hand knowledge to preparations for Paris-based events. As a key part of the team working on our Climate and Capital Initiative, Garance helps develop investment research in the low-carbon economy.

“I am always learning here to be proactive, self-rewarding and useful at the end of each day,” she says. Someday she simply wants to travel around the world sailing. She’s also learning Romanian, which would be yet another new language spoken among Amplifier staff. As we said, she fits in just fine.

Her artistic mindset blends nicely with precision, punctuality and organization, making her a true asset to the team-centered approach here at Amplifier. She writes, edits and adapts copy for video, print and online. Wren’s writer instincts started young. Childhood interactions with stories made an indelible impression, as was the case with her favorite book, “The Golden Compass,” and her favorite movie, “The Princess Bride.”

If she ever wins an Academy Award for screenwriting, she’ll be sure to thank, among others, “my pre-school, which was such a great time that I still remember it!” See what we mean about her recall? A writer’s gift to be sure.

Candice Lee

Executive Assistant

“Ask me about how the organized mind leads to better outcomes.”

Candice Lee is a rare gem. Seriously. She’s an ENTJ on the Myers-Briggs Scale, which accounts for only 3 percent of the female population. Beyond that, she’s a rare talent who, as the Executive Assistant to Founder Allison Duncan, juggles more balls than a busker at Pier 39.

She has worked with high-level executives in various fields to further add to her rare expertise. “I assist in steering this ship through uncharted and awe-inspiring waters,” she says. Her master’s degree in psychology (she also has a master’s degree in art history) surely comes into play in helping to navigate the eclectic, talented people who collectively make Amplifier what it is. Though some might find that a difficult challenge,

Candice insists it’s the best part of her job. “I love the people!” she says. Candice married a Brit who once owned a pub, and her dream would be to own a vineyard. “I could subsist on a diet of Champagne alone,” she jokes. Her thirst for life and adventure is real. An ideal vacation? “An African safari,” she says. Candice is, indeed, a rare one. Delightfully rare.

Yulia Markina

Associate Web Developer

“Ask me about how digital experiences can drive social change.”

Yulia creates responsive user-friendly websites for Amplifier and its partner using JavaScript, jQuery, PHP, HTML, and CSS. Yulia is a self taught developer who earned a Ph.D. in telecommunications at Taganrog Institute of Technology in Russia and has a degree in engineering. Yulia came to Amplifier as an intern and has since been promoted to full-time permanent staff. She speaks Russian, English and is learning Spanish.

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