Meet the Team
Matt is a former White House spokesman and U.S. Department of Education communications chief who helps causes, campaigns, and organizations use communications to maximize their impact. As Communications Director and acting Assistant Secretary at the Department of Education, Matt was the top communications advisor to the Secretary of Education and led a team of more than 100 public affairs professionals through Senate confirmation of a new Secretary and implementation of landmark legislation. Matt joined the Department after serving as a vice president at global public relations leader Porter Novelli, where he led brand positioning campaigns and provided crisis communications counsel to Fortune 500 companies, global philanthropic organizations, and leading industry associations. Prior to his work at Porter Novelli, Matt held multiple positions in former President Barack Obama’s White House and, before that, on his 2008 Presidential campaign. Among his roles in the White House, Matt was Assistant White House Press Secretary, managing communications on a wide range of domestic policy issues including education, justice, labor, energy and environmental issues, science, and technology. Born and raised in the Boston area, Matt currently lives in San Francisco with his wife.
Marie Aberger Nesi
is a former communications aide for the Obama White House, Airbnb, and the State of Rhode Island, with extensive experience developing and executing communications strategy, messaging, and event rollouts as well as crisis communications. Until January 2017, Marie served as Press Secretary and Senior Communications Advisor to Rhode Island Governor Gina M. Raimondo, the state's first female governor. Previously, Marie worked in the White House on the communications teams of both President Obama and Vice President Biden. She accompanied the President on nearly all of his domestic and international travel. Marie also worked on the Public Affairs team at Airbnb, where she was a spokeswoman for public policy and regulatory issues and helped lead grassroots organizing efforts in Portland, Oregon, which became the first major U.S. city to pass legislation favorable to home sharing. Marie currently resides in Denver with her husband.
Jonathan is a communications and strategy consultant who has provided guidance and writing to some of the nation’s leading education leaders, nonprofits and school systems. Jonathan served in the Obama Administration as Communications Director and Acting Assistant Secretary at the U.S. Department of Education. In that role, he was chief communications advisor to the Secretary of Education, and oversaw a 106-member team responsible for the Department’s messaging, media relations, speech writing, public engagement, intergovernmental affairs, web and digital strategy, photography and video, publications, and recognition programs for schools and students. Previously, Jonathan served as Partner and Chief of Staff at NewSchools Venture Fund, and as Director of New Initiatives at the KIPP network of schools. Jonathan has worked as an author, journalist and teacher, writing the critically acclaimed book Hard Lessons: The Promise of an Inner-City Charter School and serving as an education reporter for the Oakland Tribune. His education articles also have been featured in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Education Week and other publications. His writing has won numerous awards, including a national education writers award. He lives in Oakland with his wife and two daughters.
Caroline Stevens has deep communications experience across the government, non-profit and business sectors. She worked on President Obama’s 2008 campaign, and then went on to serve the Obama Administration in communications roles at the Department of Housing & Urban Development, the Office of the Vice President and the White House Press Office. Among her roles at the White House, Caroline served as Regional Communications Director, where she was a spokesperson for regional media, focusing on sharing the administration’s message with regional outlets across the country and serving as the primary contact in the administration these outlets. Following the White House, Caroline worked in public affairs for a publicly-traded natural food company with over $515 million in annual revenue, where she managed communications strategy and government relations for a number of policy issues. Additionally, she has worked closely with many mission-driven organizations to drive their communications strategy and public relations efforts, including the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative. Caroline lives in San Francisco with her husband.