Executive Board 2017
President- Josh Hochman
Josh, BK ’18, hails from Short Hills, New Jersey and is a History major focusing on transatlantic relations. He has worked as a Policy Intern for Phil Murphy’s gubernatorial campaign in New Jersey and as a speechwriter for the Atlantic Council, a foreign affairs think tank. Josh is now a College Fellow at the Kerry Initiative and a Director’s Fellow at the Institute for Social and Policy Studies. You'll often find him sipping coffee at Willoughby's or watching The Office.
Vice President- Michelle Peng
Michelle, JE ’19, hails from Fayetteville, Arkansas and is a proud Arkansas Democrat. Her main policy interests include education, public health, and dogs in politics (she's still mourning the loss of Sutter Brown, former first dog of California). On campus, she's also a Communication and Consent Educator and a member of the JE SAC. In her free time, she likes to tag her friends in memes, take long naps, and look at pictures of dogs and cats.
Treasurer- Sonny Stephens
Meet Sonny Stephens, SM '19, your Dems Treasurer. Sonny is majoring in Global Affairs and particularly loves studying Latin American politics as they relate to global security. Born and raised in Austin, Texas, Sonny can teach you how to dance both Texas Two-Step and Cumbia. He loves watching Rachel Maddow, listening to the "Hot Rhythmic" playlist on Spotify, and walking up Hillhouse. He loves being a part of Dems because it lets him simultaneously satisfy his penchant for politics, while also serving the community. Outside of Dems, he is a CCE, an Hermano of Lambda Upsilon Lambda, and a contributor to the Roosevelt Institute. He wants you to know that while Sonny is his nickname, his full name is Mariano Antonio Cienfuegos Stephens (he acknowledges that it's a mouthful).
Legislative Coordinator- Makayla Haussler
Makayla, MC '19, is a Political Science major with a concentration in Urban Studies. This summer, she returned to her hometown of Lincoln, Nebraska to intern for her favorite local non-profit, where she organized to save the Affordable Care Act and researched the connections between labor unions and the immigrants' rights movement in the state's rural meat packing communities. Makayla also serves as the Chairwoman of Hacibey Catalbasoglu's campaign for Ward 1 Alder and as an intern at Planned Parenthood of Southern New England. In a previous life, she was the Dems' Communications Director. Makayla is excited to get to know all of the incoming students, but is especially eager to talk to you about any of the following topics: political podcasts and media, the myth of middle America, music, New Haven or European politics, and campaigns. If you have an issue that you think we should advocate for in our next bout of legislative advocacy, reach out to Makayla directly.
Elections Coordinator- Jordan Cozby
Jordan, BR ’20, is doubling majoring in economics and history. He was born and raised in Huntsville, Alabama and first got involved in politics as a fellow with President Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign. Since then, he served as the national chairman of the High School Democrats of America and on the Hillary for Alabama Leadership Council. Outside of Dems, Jordan is involved in the Yale College Council and the Yale Undergraduate Legal Aid Association. In his spare time, you can find him catching up on Parks and Rec, House of Cards, and the latest in Alabama politics.
Campus Outreach Coordinator- Esul Burton
Esul, SM ’20, is a current resident of Arlington, Virginia, previously hailing from Seoul, South Korea. An ardent follower of politics since the 2008 Democratic primary, she first became involved with the Yale Dems through canvassing for Hillary Clinton in Philadelphia and has stuck with Dems ever since. As a Political Science major, she is particularly passionate about racial justice, voting rights, and criminal justice reform. Outside of Dems, Esul is on the board of the Yale Women's Center and is involved with the Asian American Studies Task Force. She also spent this past summer as a Light Fellow in Seoul, South Korea studying Korean and is interested in finding ways to merge her new language skills with the political work she is doing in Dems and beyond. In her free time, she can be found writing unfinished spoken word poetry and catching up on 16 different Netflix shows.
Communications Director- Keera Annamaneni
Keera, TD '20, is a prospective Political Science major from East Brunswick, New Jersey. She first became involved in politics after working for New Jersey state legislators and researching domestic violence and children’s development in New Jersey. At Yale, Keera writes for The Politic and edits for The Historical Review. She is also a CCE, interns in the office of Alder Darryl Brackeen Jr., and loves being a part of the TD family on TD’s Mott Wooley Council. In her free time, Keera can be found making bad puns, perfecting her snapchat story, or missing her dog (who is fondly named Dog).
Events Coordinator- Issy Bysiewicz
Isabel, MC ‘20, is from Branford, Connecticut (only about 15 minutes from campus). Planning to study either Global Affairs or Political Science, Isabel is interested in foreign policy and diplomacy. She got involved with the Yale Dems campaigning for Hillary Clinton and other Democratic candidates this past fall. Outside of the Dems, Isabel is involved with other volunteer organizations at Yale, including the Yale Undergraduate Prison Project, Bridges ESL, Yale VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance), and is a volunteer at IRIS (Integrate Refugee and Immigrant Services) in New Haven. In her free time she enjoys reading, watching John Oliver and The Office, and hiking at East Rock Park.
City Engagement Coordinator- Elias Mastakouris
Elias Mastakouris, ES ’20, is a freshman from Sea Cliff, New York, interested in studying political science and foreign affairs. Before coming to Yale, he worked for local Democratic campaigns, volunteered for his federal representative, and interned on Capitol Hill. At Yale, Elias serves as Team Coordinator in the office of Alder Darryl Brackeen Jr., engages in New Haven politics, and participates in Focus for Dwight Hall. He also tutors for Squash Haven and helps on the research team of Yale Students for Prison Divestment. In his free time, he likes to read the news, run, and do Muay Thai.