Our Team

Student Leadership

Victoria Ferrara-Lawlor // Board Chair

University of Massachusetts, Amherst

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Victoria Ferrara-Lawlor is the State Board Chair of MASSPIRG Students. She is a junior attending the University of Massachusetts Amherst studying Psychology and Public Health. Her involvement started fall freshman year on the Democracy Campaign for Automatic Voter Registration. Now at her campus, she is the Vice Chair and works mostly of the environmental campaigns. She hopes to pursue a future in environmental justice and healthcare reform. Away from school, Victoria lives in Mansfield, MA where she spends time with her two younger siblings and loves swimming and biking.

John Coviello // Board Treasurer

University of Massachusetts, Amherst

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John Coviello is the State Board Treasurer for MASSPIRG Students. He is currently a senior attending the University of Massachusetts Amherst and is the Chapter Treasurer for his campus chapter. His involvement started as a volunteer his 2nd semester sophomore year on the Affordable Textbooks and Student Debt campaign, continuing that work now into a current Affordable College campaign. He looks forward to a future in computer and information systems, using data analytics to address policy and business challenges in housing, healthcare, and education. John lives locally year-round in Sunderland MA, where you’ll most often find him running, gaming, and turning his kitchen upside down trying to replicate his favorite meals

Gabriela Colmenares // Board Secretary

University of Massachusetts, Amherst

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Gabriela Colmenares is the State Board Secretary for MASSPIRG students. She is currently a senior attending the University of Massachusetts Amherst and is the Chapter Chair for her campus chapter. Her involvement started her first semester sophomore year on the Hunger and Homelessness campaign before involving herself with the Save the Bees campaign. She hopes to pursue a future in the hospitality industry while also including her passions for the environment into her work. Outside of the school year, Gabby lives in White Plains, NY where she enjoys spending time with her parents, traveling and seeking out great food (that the bees help provide!)

David Morawski // Executive Committee Member At-Large

Berkshire Community College

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David Morawski is the Chapter Chair for MASSPIRG at Berkshire Community College. He is a Sophomore Psychology major and participates in other on-campus groups such as The Green Team. David’s involvement with MASSPIRG began his second semester and he has worked on the 100% Renewable Energy and Affordable Textbooks campaign. David lives in Pittsfield, MA and hopes to help make positive change.

Garrett Marcinkiewicz // Executive Committee Member At-Large

University of Massachusetts, Lowell

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Garrett Marcinkiewicz is a State Executive Board member at large for MASSPIRG Students. He’s a Sophomore at Umass Lowell where he also serves as the Vice Chair for his MASSPIRG chapter. His involvement started this past semester and he is mainly working with the 100% Renewable Energy campaign. He hopes to pursue a future in the medical field and attend medical school after his undergrad. During the summers he goes back home in Medway MA, where he enjoys spending time with family, going to the beach, and volunteering in the local community.

Our Staff

Samantha Gibb  //   Organizing Director

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Sam oversees student leaders on college campuses across New England and directs campus organizing efforts on a variety of public interest issues. In previous roles with CALPIRG Students, she worked with USC and UCLA students to run a grassroots petition drive and city council lobbying campaign to pass a plastic bag ban in Los Angeles, effectively eliminating 3 billion bags from circulation. Over the past nine summers, the canvass offices she has overseen have raised $3 million for nonprofit advocacy groups. Sam lives in Boston where she enjoys biking, swimming and visiting beautiful places around Massachusetts.

Julia McLaughlin  //   Assistant Organizing Director

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Julia McLaughlin is the Assistant Organizing Director for MASSPIRG Students. Julia got her start as a student organizer with her own MASSPIRG Chapter while she was an undergrad at UMass Amherst where she studied English and French. She spent her first two years on full time staff as a campus organizer at UC Riverside and UCLA with CALPIRG Students, working to help successfully pass SB100, a state bill committing California to 100% clean electricity by 2045. In the summer, Julia enjoys spending her weekends at the beach, laying out in the sun and swimming in the ocean.

Andy MacDonald  //  Executive Director

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Andy manages the staff who work on 37 campuses in eight states, as well as training, staff development, volunteer programs, campaign strategy and canvassing for the Student PIRGs. Andy has maintained a funding base for the student chapters, built a pipeline for students and staff to become lifelong activists, and been a part of a variety of social change campaigns. He has held numerous positions within the network, including regional director and assistant national summer canvass director for Fund for the Public Interest. Andy lives in Amherst, Mass., with his family, and enjoys all outdoor sports, especially running.

Dan Xie  //  Political Director

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Dan directs the national political strategy and grant fundraising for the Student PIRGs. Dan has managed successful campaigns from coast to coast to cap global warming pollution, fight the high cost of higher education, and make voting more accessible for students. She has recruited and trained hundreds of students and staff on public interest campaigns. Dan lives in St. Petersburg, Fla., where she is an avid cyclist and climber.

Leigh-Anne Cole  //  Deputy Director

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Leigh-Anne is Deputy Director of the Student PIRGs. She coordinated the Student PIRGs’ New Voters Project from 2008 to 2012, which registered more than 300,000 people to vote and made more than 1 million “get-out-the-vote” contacts. As Director of Recruitment for The Public Interest Network, she recruited thousands of candidates to apply to join our network, hundreds of whom have found jobs or careers here, while others have gone on to pursue other public interest positions. Leigh-Anne lives in Somerville, Massachusetts, where she loves to go hiking with her dog, Aspen, and her daughter, Rosie.