Spitfire Strategies

Jenny Kern

Vice President

Along with more than a decade of experience in strategic communication, nonprofit advocacy, politics and public affairs, Jenny Kern brings a contagious enthusiasm to her work at Spitfire. She is an expert in issues ranging from education to the environment to public health and criminal justice reform and has a knack for turning complex information into concise and compelling messages.

Relationship building is at the center of everything Jenny does. Whether she’s providing strategic counsel to a client, working closely with the media to help shape a story or facilitating a coalition, Jenny takes the time to understand the individual needs of those she’s working with and responds carefully. She brings this philosophy to her work with clients, such as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, New Teacher Center, Create CA and California Education Partners.

Jenny leads Spitfire’s team that provides strategic communication support to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation grantees across the country that are working to protect and advance important education reforms. In California, Jenny works with grantees such as the CORE Districts to develop stories that bring to life the impact of its work and Policy Analysis for California Education (PACE) to improve its communication planning around report releases. Jenny also leads Spitfire’s ongoing communications coaching of the Foundation’s five Teacher Preparation Transformation Centers that bring together diverse schools of thought to improve the field of teacher preparation and ensure we are quickly moving toward a reality where all students have the support they need to succeed.

Working with New Teacher Center, the Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities and California State University, Jenny led the effort to launch the inaugural Better Together: California Teachers Summit in 2015. With Spitfire’s communication and outreach support, this first-of-its kind day of learning led by teachers, for teachers drew more than 10,000 teachers across the state in its first year. In 2016 and 2017, organizers brought Spitfire back to support the second and third annual Summits, which expanded to more sites and engaged a growing and diverse coalition of partners. The team is again working with organizers to make the fourth annual Summit even better.

moreless about Jenny
Midy Aponte

Midy Aponte

Senior Vice President

AnaChristina Arana

AnaChristina Arana

Account Coordinator

Jae Aron

Jae Aron

Senior Account Manager

Alexander Boykin

Alexander Boykin

Learning Programs Specialist

Jennifer Carnig

Jennifer Carnig

Senior Vice President

Mark Dessauer

Mark Dessauer

Vice President

Alvin Findlay

Alvin Findlay

Controller

Kevin Forster

Kevin Forster

Chief Financial Officer

Annabelle Gardner

Annabelle Gardner

Senior Account Manager

Shari Goins

Shari Goins

Project Accountant

Kristen Grimm

Kristen Grimm

President

Erin B. Hart

Erin B. Hart

Chief Innovation Officer

Kristiana Jordan

Kristiana Jordan

Account Executive

Beth Kanter

Beth Kanter

Chief Strategy Officer

Jenny Kern

Jenny Kern

Vice President

Liv Kittel

Liv Kittel

Director

Ellie Klerlein

Ellie Klerlein

Vice President

Sydney McKenney

Sydney McKenney

Senior Account Executive of Creative

Haley McKey

Haley McKey

Senior Account Executive

Melanie Moon

Melanie Moon

Senior Account Manager

Sherice Perry

Sherice Perry

Vice President

Prita Piekara

Prita Piekara

Director of External Engagement

Dennis Poplin

Dennis Poplin

Senior Vice President

Michael Ramsey

Michael Ramsey

Senior Account Executive

Hannah Ross

Hannah Ross

Account Executive

Nima Shirazi

Nima Shirazi

Director

Jacquelyn Smith

Jacquelyn Smith

Account Executive

Heather Sullivan

Heather Sullivan

Operations Executive

Jen Thom

Jen Thom

Vice President

Aaron Zeiler

Aaron Zeiler

Account Coordinator

COAL + ICE: Overcoming Barriers to Spark Climate Action

AnaChristina Arana

By AnaChristina Arana
Account Coordinator

  “One of the key messages that comes out very strongly from the [IPCC] report is that we are already seeing the consequences of 1°C of global warming through more extreme weather, rising sea levels and diminishing Arctic sea ice, among other changes,” said Panmao Zhai, Co-Chair of IPCC Working… (read more)

Spitfire Spotlight: Get to know our newest Spitfires

There are some new faces at Spitfire, adding valuable talents and perspectives to the Spitfire team. We sat down with four of them to learn more about some of their favorite things—at work and at play.   Where were you before Spitfire? Mike Carter-Conneen Director, Washington, D.C. I spent 15… (read more)

Throwback Thursday: Thinking Through Communication Conundrums

Kristen Grimm

By Kristen Grimm
President

  One of the best jobs I ever had was at Exploration Summer Camp (their motto: where you make summer meaningful), where I worked from ages 18-21. As counselors, we made up classes to teach and we did activities in the afternoon. One day, I found myself co-leading a contraception… (read more)

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