top of page

The Executive Team

Operations

Operations Committee

The Operations Committee oversees all other executive committees. They work closely with the Executive Director to make decisions on action plans for nationwide campaigns. 

0 (1).jpeg

Executive
Director
 

IMG_8635 (2).jpg

 
Executive Chief of Policy and Programs

Alvin Lee (he/him) is the founder and Executive Director of GENup. In this capacity, he oversees day-to-day operations of the organization as well as strategic development and expansion of the organization as a whole. He is a current Sophomore at Stanford University studying public policy and education. A proud graduate of California public schools and a Bay Area native, he has been deeply involved in California education policy since 9th grade and envisions an interconnected education system where student voice and leadership help drive policy creation.In the fall of 2019, he organized youth-led marches for education in three cities (Oakland, SF, San Jose) for the Schools and Communities First Ballot Initiative. After getting involved in local school district issues and noticing the lack of youth participation in education, he founded GENup: a national, youth-led advocacy organization that strives to advocate for education reform through the power of youth voices. Alvin believes that grassroots, community-oriented organizing is at the core of every successful movement.

 

Alvin is the founding member of the California Department of Education’s first Youth Advisory council, where students utilize youth voice to shape education-policy affecting all of California’s 6.3 million public school students. Alvin is also a co-founder of the California Student Board Member Association.

In his free time, Alvin enjoys music, hiking, and tennis.

Email: alee@generationup.net

Genavieve Koenigshofer (she/her) is a sophomore at University of California: San Diego. She is a pre-med student pursuing a double major in Cognitive and Behavioral Neuroscience and Political Science: Public Policy. As Chief of Staff, she oversees all Directors on the Executive Team and coordinates GENup’s operations. Genavieve developed an interest in education policy as the 2019-2020 Student Advisor to the Capistrano Unified School District Board of Trustees, representing almost 50,000 students. She is a founding member of the California Student Board Member Association and now sits on their Board of Directors. Genavieve has also served as the Operations VP for Congresswoman Katie Porter's Youth Advisory Board, as a UCSD campus leader for the UC Advocacy Network, and as the President of GENup higher education at UCSD.

Email: genavieve@generationup.net

2021 Profile Pic.jpg

Chief Operations Officer

George Ashford (he/him) is a sophomore at Claremont McKenna College and a prospective Politics, Philosophy, and Economics major. Before joining GENup's Higher Education policy team, George pursued his passion for youth advocacy and local government as the Chair of the Takoma Park Youth City Council and a Cohort Captain and Roundtable Facilitator with the YMCA Changemakers Institute. He has volunteered and organized campaigns including that of Senator Gary Peters and President Joe Biden in Michigan, worked as a communications assistant for Takoma Park Mayor Kate Stewart, and interned with the Executive Department at FairVote, an electoral reform advocacy organization. He currently works as a research assistant for the Rose Institute for State and Local Government and as an intern in Congressman Jamie Raskin's DC Office. In his spare time, George loves arguing about tax policy, backpacking, skiing, and otherwise enjoying the outdoors. He is excited to join GENup in making higher education more equitable and accessible for students of all races and income backgrounds!

YW7MG4QY-27FY_original - ashlyn bautista.JPG

Executive Chief of 
Communications

Ashlyn Bautista (she/her) is a third year at UC San Diego from Yorba Linda, California, who is majoring in English Literature with minors in both Ethnic Studies and Education Studies. As someone who grew up in a family of educators, she was exposed early to conversations around the disparities and hurdles that many students face within the education spectrum. After seeing the ways that her hometown's Board of Education has been actively trying to ban and condemn important aspects of school curriculum, she wanted to be part of a group of like-minded people that have the chance to advocate for equitable, racially inclusive policies that have the ability to shape a students life. Having been a part of GENup since 2021, Ashlyn still uses her passion and talents to be a voice for previously marginalized groups and wants to continue this work in her goal to become a future educator. She is currently a member of the GENup chapter at UC San Diego, the GENup Executive Chief of Communications, looking over the Media, Technology, and Communications departments, and a GENup Higher Education Policy Director. In her free time, she enjoys doing anything artistic, going to the beach, reading a good book, and baking sweets for friends and family.

Alison Picture 1 - Alison C..jpg

 Deputy Chief of Policy and Programs

Alison Chiu (she/her) is a junior at Heritage High School in Brentwood, California. She is extremely passionate about making a change ever since she was young. She is a strong advocate for gender equality, student engagement, and mental health. Alison got involved with GenUP originally at a local level, joining her district's chapter. Then, she became a Director of Organizing, gaining much experience in how to communicate with members and learning a lot about local education systems. She loved learning about the different processes her chapter went through and the extensive advocacy her chapter did locally. She is currently the co-president of her district's chapter. Alison also has a lot of interest in environmental activism, having been Vice Chair and current Co-Chair for Sustainable Leaders in Action (the youth branch of Sustainable Contra Costa). There she is extensively working on the No Oil and Gas Drilling campaign with the rest of her team and is currently working on implementing an education program on water for young students with nearby water districts, along with many other initiatives. Additionally, another passion of Alison's is speech and debate. She has been on the board for her school's speech and debate club and is the current president of the club. Alison is proud of what GenUP, both locally and on a larger scale, has done, and she is absolutely excited to see what holds for the future!

Organizing

Organizing Committee

The Organizing Committee reaches out and makes connections with all GENup chapters. They provide a one-on-one line of communication to the GENup Executive Team and are also instrumental in rolling out new campaigns.

Officer Headshots - Daniel - Low Res - Daniel Dolan.jpg

Chief Organizing 
Officer

Daniel Dolan (he/him) is a senior at Del Norte High School in San Diego, California. They have a strong passion for political advocacy and youth leadership, stewarding numerous projects at Del Norte as part of the local GENup chapter & Civics Club. Some of these projects include debates between students on different sets of issues (including domestic & foreign policy), voter registration drives, panels with minorities on campus, and interviews with Congressmen. Daniel also works with their district on advocating for increased CTE-focused policy to open up career pathways for Del Norte students and is in youth leadership as a CTSO state president and commissioner of their student body.

id.jpeg

Chief Organizing Officer

Sanya Dhama (she/her) is a first-year at Pitzer College in the Joint Medical Program in Claremont, CA, pursuing a major in Human Biology on a path to become a physician.  In high school, she represented her peers as class president and student representative on her school site council.  It was these experiences and her involvement within the Mayor’s Youth Council that opened up her eyes to the world of advocacy.  Since then, she has promoted civic engagement within youth through hosting rallies and conferences in her role as Region 11 President for the California Association of Student Councils and Far South Regional Director for the Empowerment Collective.  Her advocacy efforts range from health equity to racial justice to education, and beyond.  Deeply passionate about minority representation—both in and out of medicine—, she serves as an intern for the Keck Science Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee and for the United Nations Women USA Los Angeles Chapter, working to promote diversity and gender equity.  She even had the opportunity to speak alongside Asm Medina in support of AB 101 for Ethnic Studies at a statewide press conference.  As the co-founder of GoToTutors (a free, virtual peer-to-peer tutoring service), she greatly values education and emphasizes community engagement as an avenue towards creating solutions to support those in need.  Sanya finds her greatest inspiration from her peers and thus always looks to support and uplift the voices of the leaders of today—aka YOU!  On her free time, she loves listening to music (recently into French and Ukrainian music), watching basketball, swimming, and going on spontaneous trips.

Policy

Policy Committee

The Policy Committee develops most new campaigns for GENup to pursue. They are also in charge of drafting educational policy, reaching out to legislators and tracking key bills that GENup may support.

headshot - fiona lu.jpg

Chief Policy & Legislative 
Director

Fiona Lu (she/her) is a senior at Northwood High School in Irvine, Orange County, California. She is extremely passionate about educational equity, racial justice, and youth advocacy. She is a student representative on the State Superintendent of Public Instruction (SSPI) Youth Advisory Council, where she and 11 other students advise policymakers and educators towards implementing equitable practices in the education system. She is also involved in the California Association of Student Councils (CASC) as the State Vice President where she oversees the organization’s state-wide efforts, including leadership conference planning, legislative platform, and student engagement. Her fight for racial equity includes leading a local chapter of Dear Asian Youth, an organization that works to empower Asian youth through intersectional activism. In her free time, she loves creative writing, watching Criminal Minds on loop, and spending time with her family. 

Campaigns

Campaigns Team

The Campaigns Team creates resources to assist chapters in successfully operating and executing campaigns.

Screenshot 2023-04-23 at 6.57.44 PM - Maegha Ramanathan.png

Chief Campaigns Officer

Maegha Ramanathan (she/her) is a high school student at Dublin High School! From a young age, she has always been passionate about change-making and community service, and has gained over 200 volunteer hours solely dedicated to changing the environment--which is part of why she joined GENup. As a Campaigns Director of GENup, she helps design toolkits for chapters and ideates ways GENup can improve and expand. Apart from GenUp, she is a passionate swimmer, debater, and volunteer at many organizations.

Partnerships

Partnerships Committee

The Partnerships Committee is in charge of all communications and relationships with partner organizations. They develop resources for campaigns in partnership with other organizations, and help mentor smaller youth-led civic organizations.

IMG_9604 (1) - Phillip Nguyen.HEIC

Chief Officer of  Partnerships

Phillip Nguyen (he/him) is a high school senior at Bolsa Grande High School in the Garden Grove Unified School District. Phillip's interests in advocacy began when he learned about the GENup-led Take a Seat Campaign's effort to establish a student board member position in his school district. He served in the Garden Grove GENup chapter as a Director of Strategic Partnerships and then became a Partnerships Director for the GENup Executive Team. Now a Co-Chief Partnerships Officer at GENup, he extensively collaborates with various GENup departments and external stakeholders to develop policy coalitions and maintain meaningful relationships that amplify students' voices. In addition to his work in GENup, Phillip served as an inaugural Young Senator for Senator Thomas J. Umberg in State Senate District 34. Outside of advocacy, Phillip enjoys studying Mandarin Chinese and currently has an Oral Proficiency rating of "Intermediate Mid" in the language. In the summer of 2023, he studied Mandarin Chinese abroad in Kaohsiung, Taiwan with a full National Security Language Initiative for Youth (NSLI-Y) scholarship from the United States Department of State. He also serves as an Alumni Representative for the NSLI-Y Alumni Association, providing professional networking and global service opportunities for more than eight thousand alumni. Phillip is a proud Questbridge National College Match finalist. When he has time, Phillip loves to study history, create Spotify playlists, and obsess over his favorite Taiwanese bands.

IMG_6824 - Sheila Menon.jpg

Chief Officer of  Partnerships

Sheila Menon (she/her) is a junior at Canyon Crest Academy in the San Dieguito Union High School District in San Diego, CA. From observing instances of racial and social-based hate within her own community, and police brutality nationwide, Sheila became passionate about advocating for social justice and equity work within the education system. As President of her district’s chapter of Diversify Our Narrative, she has worked to incorporate representative curriculum and diversity, equity, and inclusion resources within k-12 schools, in order to educate and dismantle internal biases in youth at a young age and promote continuous inclusion practices. Through her work in DON she has led numerous initiatives focused on social justice and educational advocacy, including the development of original curriculum lesson plans focused on Stereotypes & Prejudice, Asian American History, Microaggressions, Feminism and Women’s History. She and her club have presented to over 200 students since 2022 and continue to lead presentations with more students district wide. In addition to social justice advocacy, Sheila is a strong advocate for mental health and suicide prevention. She has been assisting with a PhD student’s research on childhood depression at the Gabrieli Lab at MIT since summer of 2022. Sheila is excited to begin work as a Director of Partnerships for GENUp: she hopes to bring her experience and passion for effective communication and collaboration to enact lasting change within the educational system, specifically focusing on work that supports marginalized student populations. Outside of advocacy, Sheila loves to read, listen to music, ice-skate, and watch a variety of tv shows.

Finance Committee

The Finance Committee manages all monetary affairs. They are also in charge of all fundraising efforts, such as developing new, innovative fundraising ideas and applying for grants.

Finance

Communications Committee

The Communications Committee is in charge of all written communications from GENup. Some of their duties include writing press releases, open letters, website content, blog posts, and editorials. They also run the GENup podcast and manage email communications.

Communications
Screenshot 2023-11-19 at 6.16.33 PM - Thy Luong.png

Chief Communications Officer

Thy Luong (she/her) is a senior at Notre Dame High School in San Jose, California. She is extremely passionate about youth civic engagement, LGBTQ+ rights, and storytelling. In her local community, she serves as San Jose D4 Youth Commissioner and Santa Clara County's Youth Poet Laureate, and her policy goals often revolve around giving underserved students more educational and civic opportunities. She is the founder of Learn4Justice, an international youth-led organization aimed towards teaching students humanities skills through a justice lens. She's also a massive proponent of international exchange and is a NSLI-Y Mandarin and Stanford China Scholars program alumni. In her free time, you'll find her obsessing over vast fantasy sagas, crocheting things she'll never wear, or playing guitar very badly.

Technology

Technology Committee

The Technology Committee handles a variety of tech-related activities, from managing the website and other online platforms, to setting up webinars and our digital outreach tools, and much more!

Media
-6921159627362307870 - Satyajith Kesanapally.jpg

Chief 
Technology
Officer

Satyajith Kesanapally (he/his)is a sophomore at Mission San Jose High School. Satyajith has always felt that the millions of students across California need more of a voice in the state education system and not just local districts. Mental health and environmental issues have been discussed in his local school district, but Satyajith wants to ensure that these issues are brought up universally across California. Satyajith recognizes that the COVID-19 pandemic reduced face to face interactions for years, and its effects on students’ mental health are still notable. By joining GENup, Satyajith wants to use his skills as a Boy Scout leader to bring positive changes to students across Cailfornia. Also, Satyajith is an avid programmer and loves to use his programming skills to help his local community in any way he can. Satyajith has experience programming in python, java, and C++ and has created websites using frameworks such as Flask. For fun, Satyajith plays soccer, reads news articles, and programs robots. He also occasionally plays his favorite video game, Fifa. 

Media Committee

The Media Committee makes content for and manages all GENup social media. They also edit GENup videos and the GENup podcast.

1647215542097 - Durriya Ahmed.jpeg

Chief Media Officer

Durriya Ahmed (she/they) is a rising Junior at the University of California, Los Angeles, pursuing a degree in History and Geography/Environmental Studies. As a community college transfer from Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa, California, Durriya has been a strong advocate for community colleges and educational equity. During their time at Orange Coast College, Durriya led the advocacy branch of their student government and represented Region VIII in the Student Senate for California Community Colleges: working closely with legislation that actively impacts California Community College students and incorporating bills that GENup has worked with closely in Orange Coast College's legislative advocacy work. As a high schooler, Durriya worked heavily with March for Our Lives California and interned with former Councilmen Gil Cisneros in 2020 throughout their junior and senior years, advocating for gun reform and control. As they move forward in their higher education career, Durriya hopes to continue working in higher education as a Professor and later move on to Administration.

bottom of page