Program Staff - Catholics For Choice

Media Contact

For more information or to arrange an interview with CFC President Jon O’Brien, please contact us via phone at +1 (202) 986-6093 or by email.

Program Staff

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Photo copyright Catholics for Choice. May not be used without permission.

Elyce Nollette, International Program Associate
Elyce Nollette coordinates CFC’s international program activities with overseas policymakers, health providers, advocates, activists and collegial organizations to diminish the influence of religious extremism on public policy and advance sexual and reproductive rights. She employs her experience and training in public policy and diplomacy, to foster and sustain strategic relationships as well as inform and influence international debates in the reproductive health and religious liberty spaces. Ms. Nollette’s experience encompasses a range of human security and international development issues both domestically and internationally, including in Latin America and Africa. Ms. Nollette holds a bachelor’s degree in International Affairs from Dickinson College and a Master of Public and International Affairs in Human Security from the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs at University of Pittsburgh.

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Glenn Northern, Domestic Program Senior Associate
Glenn Northern builds strategic relationships with prochoice Catholics, policymakers, reproductive health providers, activists and collegial organizations to promote CFC’s activities and strengthen prochoice advocacy from a Catholic perspective on the local, state and national levels. Mr. Northern utilizes his extensive experience in public policy, training and technical assistance to help CFC inform and influence debates on sexual and reproductive rights and health, social justice and religious liberty. Before joining CFC, Mr. Northern led constituency building and advocacy efforts at Planned Parenthood Federation of America and the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice. He holds a degree in political science and women’s studies from Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts.

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Liz Pelcyger, Senior Development Associate
Liz Pelcyger works with the President to lead the development efforts of the organization and ensure CFC’s institutional stability. She maintains relationships with current individual and foundation supporters and promotes CFC’s mission to new and expanded constituencies, cultivating broad-based financial support for all CFC’s programs.  Ms. Pelcyger is a seasoned fundraiser with a successful track record of securing and maintaining funds from a broad range of foundation, government, corporate and individual donors. Previously, she was Development Director for Taxpayers for Common Sense, and over the past two decades has spearheaded development and institutional giving for a variety of progressive nonprofits in Washington, DC, nationwide, and around the world.  Early in her career Ms. Pelcyger was the Production Editor for Power and Decision: The Social Control of Reproduction and  Population Policies Reconsidered: Health, Empowerment, and Rights. Ms. Pelcyger holds a bachelor’s degree in religion from Wesleyan University and a master’s degree in public policy from the McCourt School of Public Policy at Georgetown University.

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Sara Hutchinson Ratcliffe, Vice President, Domestic Program
Sara Hutchinson Ratcliffe develops and implements CFC’s US activities, including policymaker education, legislative analysis, advocacy, outreach and relationships with collegial organizations. She directs CFC’s Catholics in Public Life project, a nonpartisan public education initiative that helps Catholic policy makers in the US clearly articulate prochoice positions grounded in progressive Catholicism and sound public policy. Ms. Hutchinson Ratcliffe is an experienced advocate in the public health policy arena where her work has focused on women’s health issues and tobacco control policy at the state and federal level. Working with government agencies and nongovernmental organizations on policy analysis, strategic planning, and legislative and grassroots advocacy, she held positions with several advocacy organizations including Partnership for Prevention, the American Cancer Society’s Center for Tobacco Cessation, Trust for America’s Health and Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. Ms. Hutchinson Ratcliffe holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from The George Washington University in Washington, DC.

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Cynthia Romero, Director of Communications
Cynthia Romero directs communications and messaging strategies for publications, press and public engagements, creative content and storytelling, and advocacy campaigns to elevate CFC’s thought leadership as the authoritative voice on reproductive rights, religious freedom and Catholicism. She is also the deputy editor of Conscience, CFC’s flagship quarterly magazine. Previously, Ms. Romero served as strategic communications advisor in the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), where she spearheaded communications, media outreach and Congressional testimonies on democracy, conflict and humanitarian assistance. A seasoned advocate for free speech and human rights globally, Ms. Romero has held positions at Freedom House, the Atlantic Council, and the National Democratic Institute. She has been a frequent contributor on CNN en Español, Mashable, Fox News, and other Spanish and English-language media, and authored several publications on human rights and foreign assistance. Ms. Romero holds a bachelor’s degree from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and a master’s degree from Queens University Belfast.

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Sonja Spoo, Domestic Outreach Associate

Sonja Spoo promotes CFC’s US advocacy on the local, state and national levels, focusing on outreach, engagement, and relationship building with the organization’s extensive network of activists and advocates. Ms. Spoo’s organizing experience includes working with faith communities and secular agencies around issues of gender based violence and advocating for increase access to reproductive care in underserved communities through doula work and grassroots education. Ms. Spoo holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Swarthmore College, in Swarthmore PA.

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Taylor Tuckerman, Program Coordinator and Operations Manager
Taylor Tuckerman manages the day-to-day operations of Catholics for Choice, coordinates the activities of different departments and monitors the organization’s finances and budget. Ms. Tuckerman holds a bachelor’s degree in government from Christopher Newport University and a master’s degree in political management from George Washington University.

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Amanda Ussak, International Program Senior Associate

Amanda Ussak builds and cultivates relationships with global advocates, policymakers and reproductive health providers and other influencers to advance sexual and reproductive health and rights. Ms. Ussak manages strategic partnerships with civil society and policy leaders across Latin America, Asia, Africa and Europe to educate public and policy audiences about Catholic support for women’s autonomy in reproductive health decisions and build a stronger community of advocates worldwide to diminish the influence of religious extremism on women’s health policies. Ms. Ussak has a wide range of expertise in development assistance in the government, non-profit and private sectors. Previously, she worked with several start-ups to design and test products for community initiatives. Ms. Ussak served in the Office of the Deputy Secretary and the Bureau of Public Diplomacy at the State Department. She has also consulted for several faith-based nonprofits. She holds a bachelor’s degree from George Washington University and a master’s degree from Stanford University.

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Edward Walrod, Press Officer

Edward Walrod handles CFC’s press and social media outreach, including coordinating press statements and commentary, pitching stories and engaging and cultivating relationships with journalists and media outlets. He also helps coordinate CFC’s social and digital storytelling. Mr. Walrod joined CFC after stints as a communications and press staffer on various political campaigns, including for Selectman Patrick Reynolds and gubernatorial candidate Martha Coakley in Massachusetts, as well as for the US Senate Delegation from Massachusetts. Mr. Walrod was most recently an analyst and communications writer for The Advisory Board Company on federal, state and local health policies, including healthcare disparities and women’s health. He also coordinates social media for his church, New York Avenue Presbyterian Church. He holds a bachelor’s degree in History and Political Science from Providence College in Rhode Island.

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Cristopher Willis, Writer, Researcher and Editor
Managing Editor, Conscience Magazine

Cristopher Willis is is writer, researcher and editor in the CFC communications department, where he coordinates research and writing for CFC publications and ensures all communications adhere to CFC’s style standards. As Managing Editor of Conscience, CFC’s flagship quarterly magazine, Mr. Willis manages the content, production and distribution of the magazine to a global network of thought leaders at the intersection of religious freedom and reproductive rights. Prior to joining CFC, Mr. Willis held various positions as a researcher and editor on social justice and free speech issues. Mr. Willis was a Privacy Law Fellow in the Enforcement Bureau at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and served as Executive Articles Editor for the Georgetown Law Journal. Mr. Willis holds a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from the University of Pennsylvania and a juris doctor from Georgetown University Law Center.

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