Emerge Vermont’s Cabinet

Emerge Vermont's Cabinet

The Emerge Vermont Cabinet is a dynamic and committed group of women who provide state leadership and direction for our organization.


Emerge Vermont's Cabinet

Top row, left to right: Joan Lenes, Kanika Gandhi, Rep. Kathleen James, Helen Head, Liz Gamache, Liv Peña, Alex MacLean, Shaina Kasper, Monique Priestley, Brenda Churchill. Bottom row, left to right: Rep. Katherine Sims, Lynn Fox, Samantha Sheehan, Mia Schultz, Anne Lezak, Liz Schlegel, Kerin Durfee, Sue Minter, Dottie Deans, Jane Stetson.

We are so proud to introduce Emerge Vermont’s Cabinet. These amazing and diverse women hail from all over Vermont. Many have served in local, state or national government. All are deeply involved in their communities—some for decades, and some who are just starting out. And all are committed to Emerge Vermont’s mission of recruiting and training more Democratic women to run for office, so that we can create a democracy that is truly reflective of our state and nation.

Meet our Cabinet Members:

Alex MacLean†
Peacham, VT
President of Public Relations at Leonine Public Affairs / Former Gubernatorial Campaign Manager

Anne Lezak
Burlington, VT
Consultant / Strategist / Teacher / Editor, ADL Consulting / Chair, Vermont Democratic Party

Brenda Churchill*†
Bakersfield, VT
Liaison, LGBTQIA Alliance of Vermont / Bakersfield, VT Select Board Member / Justice of the Peace

Dottie Deans†
North Pomfret, VT
Former Chair, Vermont Democratic Party

Helen Head†
South Burlington, VT
Former State Representative, South Burlington, Vermont

Jane Stetson†
Norwich, VT
Chair, Partners for Community Wellness, Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center /
Former National Finance Chair, Democratic National Committee

Joan Lenes†
Shelburne, VT
Former State Representative, Shelburne, VT

Kanika Gandhi*
South Burlington, VT
Section Chief, State of Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets

Rep. Katherine Sims*
Craftsbury, VT
State Representative, Orleans-Caledonia / Nonprofit Consultant, KS Consulting

Rep. Kathleen James*
Manchester Center, VT
State Representative, Bennington-4

Kerin Durfee*
Burlington, VT
Human Resources Director, City of Burlington, VT

Liv Peña*
South Burlington, VT
Networks and Learning Practice Coordinator, Building Movement Project

Liz Gamache*
St. Albans, VT
Director of Business Development & Donor Relations, United Way of Northwest Vermont / Former Mayor of St. Albans, VT

Liz Schlegel
Waterbury, VT
Executive Director, The Alchemist Foundation

Lynn Fox
Charlotte, VT
Former Instructor and Presidential Spouse, St. Lawrence University / Former Senior Advisor, Federal Reserve Board

Mia Schultz
Bennington, VT
Catalyst Leadership Coordinator, Rights & Democracy Vermont / President, Rutland-Area NAACP 

Monique Priestley
Bradford, VT
Project Manager, COVID Business Recovery Vermont, Center for Women & Enterprise /
Owner, The Space on Main, Bradford, VT

Samantha Sheehan*†
Hancock, VT
Campaign Manager, Molly Gray for Congress /
Former campaign manager, Lt. Governor Molly Gray and Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger

Shaina Kasper
Montpelier, VT
Policy Manager, T1International

Sue Minter†
Waterbury Center, VT
Executive Director, Capstone Community Action, Inc. / Former Vermont Gubernatorial Candidate (2016) /
Former Secretary, Vermont Agency of Transportation


Emerge Vermont Alumna*
Emerge Vermont Instructor