CEPI 2018 Participants

U.S. Congress

Michael Andrews
Chief Counsel and Majority Staff Director, US Senate Committee on Indian Affairs (SCIA)

Michael Andrews is the Chief Counsel and Majority Staff Director for the United States Senate Committee on Indian Affairs (SCIA), chaired by Senator John Hoeven (R-ND). SCIA has jurisdiction to study the unique problems of American Indian and Alaska Native peoples. These issues include, but are not limited to, Indian education, economic development, land management, trust responsibilities, health care, and claims against the United States. Prior to Capitol Hill, Andrews served in senior leadership at the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice and the Pascua Yaqui Indian Tribe in Tucson, Arizona. In addition, Andrews serves as the Chairman for the Victim Advisory Group for the United States Sentencing Commission and as a Staff Officer in the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary. Andrews holds a BS and MBA from Morgan State University, MS from Salve Regina University in International Relations, JD from Roger Williams University School of law and a LLM from The George Washington University in Taxation.

Kim Corbin
Democratic Staff Director, US Senate Joint Economic Committee

Kim Corbin is the Democratic Staff Director for the US Senate Joint Economic Committee, in the Office of Senator Martin Heinrich (D-NM). Before joining the Committee, Kim served as health advisor to Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), where she was the Minority Staff Director for the Finance Subcommittee on Health Care. She also served as health advisor to Senator Mark Udall (D-CO) and Representative Jerry Nadler (D-NY-10). Prior to her Hill service, Kim practiced law at Debevoise & Plimpton in New York City. Kim graduated from the George Washington University and earned her JD from Rutgers University School of Law.

Loren Ponds
Tax Counsel, Committee on Ways & Means (Majority)

Loren Ponds serves as a Tax Counsel for the Majority staff of the Ways and Means Committee. Prior to joining the Committee staff, Loren worked in Ernst & Young’s National Tax Department in Washington, DC, where she advised multinationals on the international tax aspects of their business operations – particularly in the areas of transfer pricing, supply chain restructuring and resolution of international tax disputes via advance pricing agreements or mutual agreement procedures, as outlined in double taxation treaties. Before joining EY, Loren spent time as a Trainee at the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, where she focused on issues related to transfer pricing and tax treaties. Loren has an AB in French Language and Literature from Davidson College, a JD, cum laude, from American University – Washington College of Law, and an LL.M with distinction from Georgetown University Law Center.

Katherine Mongé
Senior Policy Advisor to House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA-12)

Katherine Mongé serves as Senior Policy Advisor to House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA-12). She advises the Leader on legislative and regulatory issues related to trade, tax, social security, and pensions. Prior to joining the Leader’s staff, she was the Tax and Trade Counsel to Senator Benjamin L. Cardin, a member of the Senate Finance Committee. Earlier in her career, Katherine acted as a policy advisor to former Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright and former Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Carol M. Browner. She also has private-sector experience as a tax lawyer and international strategy consultant. Katherine holds a BS in Foreign Service from Georgetown University and a JD from Boston College Law School.

European Parliament

Mark Beamish
Administrator, Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO)
Mark Beamish is an administrator for the secretariat of the Internal Market Committee in the European Parliament, and he previously worked for the secretariat of the Industry Committee (ITRE). Over the last 5 years, Mark has advised members of the European Parliament on new legislation in the area of digital policy in both these committees. His focus has been on laws relating to telecoms, cybersecurity and the data economy. He studied English and German law in London, Passau and Berlin.

Adam Bowering
Head of Office for MEP Claude Moraes, Labour Party, UK

Adam Bowering is Head of Office to Claude Moraes, Chair of the European Parliament’s Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee (LIBE). He advises the Committee chair on matters related to security and data protection, anti-terrorism, police cooperation in criminal matters, surveillance and cyber security, justice and the rule of law. Prior to working in the European Parliament, he worked as an EU policy analyst and public affairs consultant in the digital and healthcare sectors.

Sabina Ciofu
Policy Advisor to MEP Adina Vălean, National Liberal Party, Romania

Sabina Ciofu is Policy Advisor to MEP Adina Vălean in the European Parliament, focusing on tech-related legislation, trade and EU-US relations. She is also a PhD candidate in Defense Studies at King’s College London, where she explores the relationship between artificial intelligence and foreign policy decision-making. Sabina is co-founder of the Gentlewomen’s Club, co-organizer of Young Professionals in Digital Policy and a member of the Global Shapers Brussels Hub, where she develops several projects in support of the local community. She holds an MA in War Studies from King’s College London and a BA in Classics from the University of Cambridge.

Hugo Córdova
Administrator, Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE)

Hugo Córdova is an administrator for the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy of the European Parliament, where he supports the legislative process facilitating negotiations, giving policy advice, and ensuring that internal rules and procedures are followed. Hugo focuses on digital policies, with particular emphasis on cybersecurity, digitalization of industry, and blockchain. Hugo has a double diploma in engineering from Politécnica de Madrid and Polytechnique de Paris and a master in European Affairs from the College of Europe (Bruges). He started his career as a research engineer for Arcelor and spent more than ten years working on innovation and industrial policy in the European Commission and the European Parliament. In his free time, Hugo is interested in electronics and the DIY movement.

German Bundestag

Lena Brommer
Political Advisor to MGP Renate Künast, Green Party

Lena Brommer is a political advisor to MGP Renate Künast, former minister of consumer protection and chair of the Committee on Legal Affairs and Consumer Protection in the German Bundestag. Lena focuses on the ethical dimension of digitalization, with a special interest in algorithmic decision-making systems and tackling hate speech and disinformation. From 2014 to 2016, as a training manager at a legal publishing house, Lena was in charge of professional trainings and academic journals for public servants, lawyers, and consultancies in Brussels, focusing on EU competition and data protection law. Lena graduated in European Public Administration (The Netherlands and European University Viadrina). Volunteering in a regional association, she led the implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation.

Marie Sophie Held
Head of Office for MGP Katharina Dröge, Green Party

Marie Sophie Held is Head of Office to Katharina Dröge, Member of the German Bundestag and Parliamentary Secretary for Alliance 90/The Greens. She has worked for Mrs. Dröge since 2014, mainly on competition and trade-related policy, providing legislative assistance for a major competition law reform that introduced new rules for the digital economy. Marie Sophie holds a master’s degree in Economics and Political Science from the University of Milan, and spent one semester at the Toulouse School of Economics. In 2010, she performed a traineeship with the European Commission at the Directorate General for Health and Consumers in Brussels, focusing on consumer markets. She started her professional career at Rohde Public Policy in Berlin, consulting for pharmaceutical companies on health-related legislation. Her mother tongue is German and she is also fluent in English, Italian and French.

Jacob Schrot
Chief of Staff to MGP Prof. Dr. Stephan Harbarth, CDU and MGP Dr. Dietlind Tiemann, CDU

Jacob Schrot is Chief of Staff to MGP Prof. Dr. Stephan Harbarth, Vice- Chairman of the CDU/ CSU Parliamentary Group in the German Bundestag. He also serves as Chief of Staff to MGP Dr. Dietlind Tiemann. Jacob Schrot chairs the Association of Parliamentary Staffers on Foreign and Security Policy, which connects 200+ staffers in a joint effort to contribute to the discourse on Germany’s growing role in international affairs. In addition, he is the founder of the Initiative junger Transatlantiker / Young Transatlantic Initiative, a 600 member-strong NGO committed to strengthening relations between young generations on both sides of the Atlantic. He was President of the Federation of German-American Clubs from May 2014 to May 2017. Mr. Schrot was Personal Assistant to Patrick Sensburg, Chairman of the German Bundestag NSA-BND Inquiry Committee, focusing on matters of international cooperation between intelligence agencies. Jacob Schrot received his MA in Transatlantic Relations with stays at Humboldt- University Berlin, Free University Berlin and The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He received his BA in Political Science with stays in Dresden and at American University in Washington, DC, where he also worked for a United States congressman and the German Marshall Fund.

Julia Wiechers
Policy Advisor to MGP Tankred Schipanski, CDU

Julia Wiechers is a policy advisor to MGP Tankred Schipanski, Member of Parliament and spokesperson of the CDU/CSU parliamentary group on the Digital Agenda. In this capacity, Julia focuses on digital issues and coordinates parliamentary matters on the Committee on Digital Agenda. Previously, she worked in public relations at the Federal Office of Civil Protection and Disaster Assistance. Julia completed a master’s degree in German Studies, Economic Policy and English Studies in Münster.

Private Sector

Murat Vurucu
Co-founder, Latentine

Murat has experiences as a strategy consultant focused on digital solutions and re-organizations. He has led diverse technical teams in product development and is a guest lecturer at ESCP Europe for data science and machine learning. He sold his previous business and co-launched Latentine to tackle the toughest scientific challenges in data. He studied industrial engineering and automation in Germany, Turkey and China and graduated with a Dipl. and M.Sc. in Management from ESCP Europe.

Stacie Whisonant 
Founder and CEO of PYT Funds, Inc.

Stacie Whisonant is the Founder and CEO of DC-based fintech company, PYT Funds, Inc. PYT provides students with the opportunity to utilize crowd-giving and alternative data to reduce the burden of student loan debt. By using a financial technology platform to help families meet the growing funding gap to pay for higher education, PYT is considered a disruptor to the finance industry and an innovative solution to the country’s student loan crisis. Stacie has not always been battling the $1.2 trillion national student debt crisis. This Virginia native has more than 13 years of experience in the finance and banking industries with a background in mortgages, structured settlements and annuities. Stacie received a BA in Business Administration and Management from Longwood University, and is a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc, where she continues her service to mankind through community service projects. Stacie is also a military veteran and served eight years as a United States Army Reservist. Lastly, Stacie likes to spend her free time with family, traveling, keeping up on the latest technologies and playing UNO. Accolades and recognition include: U.S. Department of Education MLK Jr.’s Drum Major Innovative Service Award; 2016 chosen fellow of the prestigious Halcyon Incubator program in DC; graduate of the Lighthouse Labs accelerator program; selection for the Innovate Finance 2017 Women in Fintech Powerlist; and grand prize recipient of the StartRight! Women’s Business Plan Competition. PYT Funds is also a notable winner of the Partnership Fund of New York City FinTech Innovation Lab in 2015.

Rachel Wolbers
Policy Director, Engine

Rachel Wolbers is the Policy Director at Engine, a non-profit that advocates on behalf of startups. Engine promotes policies that drive entrepreneurship and create startup ecosystems. Her issue areas include intellectual property, intermediary liability, telecom, and technology policy. Previously, Rachel worked as a Legislative Director at TwinLogic Strategies, a bi-partisan, all female tech-lobbying shop, and on Capitol Hill as Counsel to Congressman Blake Farenthold (R-TX), a member of the House Judiciary Committee. Rachel received her JD from Case Western Reserve University School of Law and her undergraduate degree in Economics from The George Washington University.

Paul Wolter
Director of Public Affairs and Communications, German Startups Association

Paul Wolter studied Media Business and European Economic Studies. He is a communications professional focused on public relations and public affairs, with extensive experiences in the tech industry and startups. His activities within the startup ecosystem, especially for the German Startups Association, have allowed him to build a strong network of founders, venture capitalists, and economic and political journalists. For the German Startups Association, he is in dialogue with decision-makers in politics and advises on legislation with the aim to establish a VC- and a startup-friendly environment in Germany. Besides his professional activities, he is an active member of the social-democratic party of Germany (SPD) and was vice president of the Jusos Berlin, the youth organization of the SPD Berlin, until spring 2018.