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Steering Committee Members
** ex-officio member
Patrice McDermott, Executive Director
She previously served as the Assistant Director of the Office for Intellectual Freedom of the American Library Association, taught information politics at Clark Atlanta University, and worked at the National Archives and Records Administration.
Patrice was awarded her doctorate from the University of Arizona in political science and received an M.Ln. in library and information management from Emory University and an M.A. from Brown University. She is a graduate of Florida State University.
Dr. McDermott is the author of Who Needs to Know? The State of Public Access to Federal Government Information. On March 16, 2011, she received the James Madison Award from the American Library Association in recognition of her work to champion, protect, and promote public access to government information and the public’s right to know. She was inducted into the National Freedom of Information Act Hall of Fame in 2001 and received the James Madison Award from American Library Association in 2011. Dr. McDermott is a frequent speaker on public access and open government issues.
Amy (Fuller) Bennett, Assistant Director
Amy Bennett is the assistant director at OpenTheGovernment.org, where she works extensively on the organization’s coalition partner outreach and on policy issues, including improving access to government information, reducing national security secrecy, preserving records, and increasing openness and accountability of the federal government.
Prior to joining the coalition, she earned a Master's in Public Policy from the Georgetown Public Policy Institute (GPPI) in May 2008. She received her BA from Tufts University in Political Science in 2001. Amy has previous experience working for a small start-up nonprofit, as a lobbyist for government relations firms, and as an aide for Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky (D-IL).
Abby Paulson, Program Associate
Abby Paulson joins OpenTheGovernment.org after interning with the coalition during the summer of 2011. She received her BA from Ithaca College in Politics in 2012.
During her studies at Ithaca College, Abby worked in the Office of Congressman Chris Van Hollen (August 2011) , the Finger Lakes Independence Center (September-December 2011), and the Women’s Institute for Freedom of the Press (May-August 2009).
CREW promotes ethics and accountability in government and public life by targeting government officials -- regardless of party affiliation -- who sacrifice the common good to special interests.