The Bill of Rights Institute Team
Tony guides the Bill of Rights Institute in teaching young people the words and ideas of America’s Founders. Previously, Tony was president of the Market-Based Management Institute, where he worked with non-profits to improve their performance using the tools of Market-Based Management.
Prior to that, Tony was president of the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, a center for economic research, education and outreach. Before joining Mercatus, Tony was vice president for education projects at the Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation, where he worked with university research centers specializing in economics, entrepreneurship and social change. Prior to joining the Foundation, Tony was a consultant and facilitator with the MBM® team at Koch Industries.
Tony has a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Michigan, and an MFA in creative writing from Wichita State University. His writing has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, National Review, The Weekly Standard, The London Times, and WORLD Magazine.
Ken manages the Institute’s technology and database needs. He most recently worked at the Mercatus Center and the Institute for Humane Studies on their development team as a part of the Charles G. Koch Associate Program. He received his Bachelor of Science in economics and a double major in management from Virginia Tech.
Ken works at the Institute because of the power it has to impact America’s future. “The direction of our country is not looking good. I work here because I believe the mission at the Institute addresses this issue, and has room to grow and address it further. After working at the Institute for Human Studies and the Charles G. Koch Foundation, I believe the Bill of Rights Institute can be a great asset to educate young people about the Founding documents.”
Veronica serves as editor and chief instructional designer of all the Institute’s instructional materials, including Presidents and the Constitution, Volumes I and II; Property Rights In America; Supreme Court DBQ: Exploring the Cases that Changed History; The Bill of Rights and You: Rights and Responsibilities; Faces of Freedom in American History; The Bill of Rights for Real Life; and Religious Liberty: The American Experiment. She has presented nationally and is a frequent contributor to professional social studies publications. Prior to joining the Institute, Veronica spent seven years in the classroom in Fairfax County, Virginia and Alachua County, Florida, and served as a contributor to Institute instructional materials. Veronica received her Master’s (1996) and Bachelor’s (1994) Degrees in English from the University of Florida. Read Veronica’s posts on A More Perfect Blog.
Veronica is passionate about the Institute’s mission because “I grew up hearing my parents’ stories about the time they left Cuba when Fidel Castro and his communist government took over. Talking with my parents and grandparents, and seeing the way they cherished the freedom and opportunity this country offers, instilled in me an appreciation for the way our Constitution protects the liberty of citizens to follow their dreams and pursue their own destinies. We have the right – and the responsibility– of self-government, and working at the Bill of Rights Institute makes me feel that I am helping make our American experiment a success.”
Brittany joined the Institute in June 2012 as part of the Charles G. Koch Associate Program. She works with students and student programs at the Institute. Brittany graduated with a Bachelor’s in Business Administration with majors in Economics and Public Administration from Baylor University in 2006 and received her Master’s Degree in Economics from the University of Edinburgh in 2007. Prior to joining the Bill of Rights Institute she worked as a Transport Economist in Edinburgh, Scotland.
Rachel joined the Bill of Rights Institute in June of 2008 as part of the Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation Associate Program. She is responsible for the writing, designing, and distributing marketing materials and leads all media outreach. Rachel graduated from Grove City College in May of 2008 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Studies. Read Rachel’s posts on A More Perfect Blog.
Rachel admires Thomas Jefferson more than any other Founder. She says: “My favorite Founder is Thomas Jefferson, because of his great contributions to religious liberty in the United States. I appreciate his unwillingness to compromise on this value.”
Andy Gillette is the Director of Program Development, and is a public speaker that presents on topics such as economic freedoms, non-profit management, and ethical business practices. After starting and managing Effective Tutoring, Inc., Andy worked as a Program Manager and Instructor at the Charles Koch Institute, where he taught numerous classes ranging from classical-liberal philosophy and Austrian economics to Market-Based Management®, a management philosophy that applies the principles of free societies within the organization. Andy graduated from Wichita State University (whose mascot is a shock of wheat) with degrees in English literature and entrepreneurship. He lives with his wife, Genevieve, in Washington, D.C.
Ben works with the Educational Resources team to help create new material and new ways of learning about the Constitution. After graduating from Georgetown University with a degree in Science, Technology and International Affairs, Ben joined the Bill of Rights Institute through the Charles G. Koch Internship Program. He was drawn to the Bill of Rights Institute “for its strong focus on the underlying principles that guide our country” and the desire “to help educate people on these ideas in original and creative ways”.
Michelle Griffes, Director for Education
Michelle directs co-sponsored Liberty Fund colloquia for teachers, and she assists Education team with writing curricula and creating online resources for teachers. Michelle graduated from Michigan State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies in Social Science–Public Policy Studies. She received K-12 Teacher Certification in Social Studies, History, and Political Science from Olivet College. Prior to working at the Institute, Michelle interned on Capitol Hill and worked as a teacher in Michigan, North Carolina and Virginia. She is originally from Grand Ledge, Michigan.
Michelle was drawn to the Institute because she believes that educating the leaders of the future about founding and constitutional principles is a fundamental part of continuing to secure liberty in the future.
Tana is responsible for curriculum resources available at the Institute, from assisting with printing and inventory management to order fulfillment and web-store maintenance, and she assists in marketing efforts, conference logistics and all customer relations. She majored in Business and Photography at Utah State University and teaches sewing and clothing design in her spare time.
Having grown up with a father who is a teacher, Tana says “I feel closely connected to teachers and am always impressed with the massive influence they have while teaching the youth of our country. Our Founders had great vision of our amazing country’s potential, and I want to help young people appreciate the protections and wisdom expressed in the founding documents so that we too can defend the liberties that our fore-fathers sacrificed so much for. I enjoy being part of a team that reaches out to help those who hold the future in their hands through our teacher programs and through our student programs.”
Rupert joined the Institute in 2011 and works with the development team to further our relationships with donors across the country. As the son of a teacher, Rupert values the Institute’s ability to equip teachers with effective materials that enable them to focus more on their students individual needs than lesson planning. Rupert graduated from the College of Charleston, SC in 2010 with a degree in Economics.
Emily Rose, Vice President of Development
Emily works with the Development team to build and strengthen the Institute’s relationships with its investors. She graduated from Bethel College with degrees in Economics and Business Administration, and completed the Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation’s Associate Program in May of 2010. Prior to being at the Bill of Rights Institute, Emily interned at the U.S. Department of Labor and on Capitol Hill. She was born and raised in Dorr, Michigan.
Emily’s enthusiasm for the Institute’s mission can be traced back to how she recalls her own education. “My junior-year government final was to lobby my state or federal representatives for a project that would benefit my community. The lesson: government is a piggy bank that provides for our needs, and even our wants. I’m certain I’m not the only high school junior that was inculcated with this point of view. And this is why I work at the Institute. I strongly believe that our work here is key to ensuring that America remains a free and prosperous society.”
Gennie leads the Institute’s Professional Development programs that consist of over 100 constitutional seminars for teachers around the nation annually. Prior to the Institute, Gennie spent 32 years as a teacher of U.S. History, AP U.S. History, We the People advanced U.S. Government, World History, Geography, Sociology, and other social studies courses at Calhoun High School in Port Lavaca, Texas. She also often served as a presenter at Texas Law-Related Education conventions and workshops. Gennie is a 2000 Madison Fellow, and received her Master’s in Political Science from Virginia Tech’s online program in 2003. Gennie received her Master’s in Education with certification in Guidance and Counseling from the University of Houston-Victoria, and her Bachelor’s Degree in Education with composite Social Studies certification from Texas State University in San Marcos. Read Gennie’s posts on A More Perfect Blog.
Gennie is glad to work here because of her own teaching experience with our curriculum. “As a former teacher, I love sharing resources that I know to be useful and valuable because I used them myself in the classroom.”
Laura manages the Institute’s professional development workshops and the Constitutional Academy. Those interested in bringing a Bill of Rights Institute professional development workshop to their district or school should contact Laura.
She graduated from Indiana Wesleyan University with a degree in Business Management and has spent her years since college working in a number of other non-profit organizations including the American Cancer Society, the Council for National Policy, and the Charles Koch Institute. She enjoys all things related to event planning and loves that she can bring this passion to the Institute team. She lives with her U.S. History teacher husband Alex in Williamsburg, Virginia.
Kyrsten works on the development team to support and build the Institute’s relationships with its foundation investors. She joins the Institute through the Charles G. Koch Associate Program. Kyrsten graduated with her Master of Arts in Political Science in May 2012 from the University of West Florida. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science also from the University of West Florida.
Kyrsten values the Institute’s mission because “I can only imagine how different my education and experiences would have been if I had been the taught the ideas so important to our Founders earlier on in life. I am glad I can contribute to building a future which provides teachers and students the opportunity to learn and understand how important our Founding principles are to a free and prosperous society.”