The Atlas is a free online community for local government leaders to browse case studies, follow topics and crowdsource ideas and advice.
Executive Vice President, GovExec and Co-Founder, The Atlas
Elle has spent her career making it easier for the public and private sectors to work together to solve problems. Prior to co-founding The Atlas, Elle served as the Director of Strategy & Partnership at re:focus partners, where she managed a $3 million grant program. She also served as Special Assistant and Communications Director in the U.S. EPA’s Office of International and Tribal Affairs, where she managed an initiative that facilitated city-to-city learning on urban innovation, designed a program that supported environmental entrepreneurship, and developed a strategy that educated stakeholders about EPA’s international success stories. Elle is a USMC spouse, dog-mom to Hugo and Charlie and lover of flat water.
Elle has an MBA with a marketing concentration from UCLA’s Anderson School of Management and a B.A. in Public Policy from the University of Michigan Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy.
Executive Vice President, GovExec and Co-Founder, The Atlas
Ellory leads city engagement in addition to product design and development at The Atlas. She has extensive experience working directly with local government officials to identify and implement strategies that solve complex infrastructure problems. Previously, Ellory was a Partner at re:focus partners, where she worked with cities and utilities to design and finance innovative stormwater management projects. Before that, Ellory held a fellowship at the Science and Technology Policy Institute, where she acted as the executive secretary of the Obama Administration’s Climate Data and Tools Initiative, and more broadly, provided analytical and technical support to the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) on a wide range of infrastructure, energy and environment issues. She frequently contributes to the ongoing conversation about cities, infrastructure and innovation in outlets like Architect Magazine and the Brookings Institution. Ellory is a USMC spouse and dog-mom to Gidget. She can be found hiking and gardening during her free time.
Ellory has a B.A. in Civil & Environmental Engineering and Public Policy with a minor in Water and Energy Sustainability from Rice University.
Vice President, GovExec and Co-Founder, The Atlas
Angela provides technical vision and leadership at The Atlas, where she oversees all engineering activities. Angela has more than 9 years of professional full-stack web development experience and is passionate about using software to solve the world’s biggest problems. She is responsible for ensuring The Atlas platform creates value for all users and delivers on its mission to help cities and innovators connect to make communities safer, smarter and more sustainable. Previously, Angela worked in software startups where she gained experience managing teams while also prioritizing, designing and building technology solutions that deliver on business needs. Most recently, she was a Full Stack Software Engineer at Recovery Brands and prior to that, was Lead Web Developer for Smart Industries. Angela is dog-mom to Hamilton. She’s a San Diego-native who loves late nights and shooting pool.
Angela studied Ethnic Studies and Political Science at University of California, San Diego and received an Associate of Science (A.S.) in Web Development and Business Administration from Cuyamaca College.
Director of Data Strategy
Director of Web Engineering
Grey wears a couple hats for the Atlas, currently focusing on front-end development & processes as well the occasional design for new features. He enjoys building software that makes an impact to business goals and loves to track progress towards them.
He has 7 years experience with web development at companies ranging from E-Commerce agencies to mid-sized SAAS businesses, where he gained his technical chops but picked up auxiliary skills like project management, mentoring, and software architecture planning. Most recently, Grey worked as a Lead Software Engineer for Classy.org, where he planned and led top-priority engineering projects, while communicating with stakeholders and offering creative and timely solutions to keep them on track. Grey also acted as a manager to 3 reports and contributed to the department with knowledge sharing, increased code documentation and process improvements.
To recharge, Grey enjoys walking his dog Alfredo, surfing, or creating something physical (painting, woodworking).
Grey received an Associate of Science in Web Development from Cuyamaca College.
Chief of Staff
Alex Rader is the Chief of Staff for The Atlas. Alex loves to learn new things, which is good because when he joined The Atlas he had to learn everything, and hasn’t finished yet. His accumulation of knowledge comes from a diverse well of experience, from being a partner in an art gallery in Brooklyn to running advertising operations at thefiscaltimes.com to consulting with law firms and architects on operations and business goals. Throughout, Alex thinks he may have spent more time automating things than he saved by automating them, but believes it was a good trade.
He received a Bachelor’s degree in economics from NYU and recent received a Master’s degree in urban planning from the USC Sol Price School of Public Policy. He is excited to bring his new academic knowledge to The Atlas with the goal of creating better cities for everyone through better communication and access to information.
He is an avid science fiction reader and claims to have read every Hugo and Nebula Award-winning novels. When he’s not reading, he’s thinking about how to improve his chocolate chip cookies, a decades-long endeavor. He recently picked up a new idea and is excited to try the next batch.
David works as a backend engineer for The Atlas, bringing multiple years of experience as both a Software Engineer, as well as a Quality Engineer. He has many interests in the software engineering field and is always excited to learn and grow as a person. He has experience using a wide range of technical stacks and he prides himself on his ability to learn new skills. Most recently, David worked at a contracting company that allowed him to work on a variety of projects. These projects consisted of team sizes ranging from 2 up to 15 people, and utilized a wide range of technologies, such as various front end libraries like Angular and React, as well as Devops tools like Kubernetes and Openshift. Here, he was able to use his technical abilities and strong collaboration skills to help secure additional contracts to allow the company to grow. He calls upon this engineering experience to help make the Atlas as great as it can be.
In his spare time, David enjoys rock climbing, playing the drums, basketball, and watching films.
David received a Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering from Rochester Institute of Technology.
Allie works as a front-end engineer at The Atlas, where she works on developing new features, code upkeep, and QA. This continues a career of values-focused work, providing support to local government and mission-based entities. Notably, she brings years of experience producing educational tools through video games and animation. Allie previously acted as a Producer where she managed the technical lifecycle of projects, oversaw scheduling, budgeting, team and client communication, and developed a love for software engineering along the way. She believes that being a good developer doesn’t just mean building technical tools in isolation, but also knowing how to learn and communicate in a shared digital ecosystem.
For fun, Allie likes working on tech and art projects, reading, listening to music, hiking, and beating your high scores at local arcades.
Allie earned a Bachelor of Science in Mass Communication from Boston University. She was certified in Software Engineering by Flatiron School.
Data Visualization Specialist
Kate is responsible for bringing data to life visually, helping to provide actionable insights and opportunities within The Atlas and to its customers. She has over twenty years of experience in software engineering and database design, working with companies as diverse as Chanel and IBM. Her efforts as an interface negotiator at AT&T helped maintain data integrity and visibility across organizations.
At The Atlas, Kate is most excited by the challenge of communicating data in a way that drives action by eliciting an intellectual or emotional response.
In her free time, Kate enjoys traveling the world or hiking with Maya, her Siberian husky. She also enjoys crafty, creative endeavors like sewing, scrap-booking, and photography.
Kate earned a Bachelors degree in computer science New Jersey Institute of Technology and a certificate in Data Science and Visualization from UCSD.
Lead Data Engineer
Ken is a Lead Data Engineer for The Atlas. He has been working with data since 2013, starting as a business systems analyst and becoming an engineer over the course of his career. His main responsibilities are coordinating ETL processes as well as integrating new data sets into The Atlas data lifecycle. He also helps with planning, mentoring and some DevOps work.
He loves bridging the gap between the technology side with the business side. Since he graduated from the University of Massachusetts – Amherst with a Bachelor’s degree in Economics, he has a unique understanding of business demands as well as technological limitations. His most recent experience was as Data Engineer at Kin, a direct-to-consumer home insurer focussed on disaster-prone areas of the United States. Before focusing on a career in data, he interned at different hedge funds in Chicago before deciding that banking wasn’t for him.
He currently lives in Austin, TX but is originally from Boston, MA. During his downtime, he enjoys practicing the martial art Brazilian Jiu-jitsu as well biking around Austin, playing pool and reading. He is an Eagle Scout and enjoys camping on the weekends.
Content Marketing Manager
As Content Marketing Manager, Rachel oversees the internal and external content strategy and communications for The Atlas. She enjoys developing strategies that maximize exposure for both the brand itself and the audiences it serves. Previously, she worked on the marketing team at Government Executive Media Group where she wrote strategic sales proposals and marketing collateral and managed all client-facing communications. Most recently, she oversaw brand strategy for a prominent entertainment industry aggregate site before transitioning to strategic partnership fundraising for a Los Angeles based non-profit. In her off-time, Rachel enjoys going to museums, seeing live music, watching films, and getting outdoors as much as possible.
Rachel has a Bachelor of Science, Psychology from Arizona State University with a certification in Business Writing.
As Community Manager, Gabby is a critical player in building our network of influential local government leaders. At The Atlas, Gabby uses her background in City and Regional Planning and Community Development to forge and sustain relationships with state and local government leaders. Previously, Gabby has worked in both the nonprofit and public sectors. As an intern at the Philadelphia City Planning Commission’s Engagement and Outreach branch, she has had valued experience engaging with Philadelphia’s neighborhood activists and providing them with the tools to better serve their community. This, along with her time working at a community empowerment nonprofit, solidified her passion and dedication to bettering cities at the local level.
When Gabby’s not working, you can find her at the beach, gym, or with friends.
Gabby has a Bachelor of Science in Community Development and a Master of Science in City and Regional Planning from Temple University.
Content Marketing Specialist
As a Content Marketing Specialist, Leo is the bridge between our clients and our content. With his background in marketing, he ensures that the problem-solving strategies used to tackle local governments’ concerns are made accessible to other officials seeking solutions. Throughout his career, Leo has grown his passion for fostering connections and building great value and experiences for his clients.
Previously, Leo worked on a marketing team for a prominent general contracting company where he generated marketing collateral such as proposals for clients seeking bids. More recently, he worked for a nationally recognized security company as an outside sales representative, providing a value-driven consultative experience for his clients and interacting with a variety of business and government entities.
In his spare time, Leo can be found reading, playing pickleball, or playing with his corgi, Rudy.
Leo received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, with an emphasis in International Relations, from the University of California, San Diego.
Content Marketing Specialist
Avery has worked in Sales, Marketing, and Event Management at a start-up, large corporation, and a public university respectively. Now at The Atlas, she works as a Content Marketing Specialist where she ensures that clients maximize The Atlas’s value. She helps clients with their case studies, highlighting the impact clients have made with their city projects. She loves to engage with clients while experimenting with unique, out-of-the-box solutions.
Avery earned her degree in Business Psychology, while minoring in Economics at University of California San Diego.
When Avery’s not working, you can find her at the beach, gym, or a national forest, car camping with friends.
Content Marketing Specialist
As a Content Marketing Specialist, Beatryce is able to combine her love for customer facing environments with her prior marketing expertise to assist clients in maximizing the Atlas’s platform as a utility for their company’s needs. She provides tailored content, active data and dedicated insights to clients for them to use exclusively within their company.
Beatryce has previously held roles in marketing and sales for both small and large organizations. She has an unparalleled enthusiasm for customer service that drives her continuous aim for perfection for her clients.
Outside of work, Beatryce has a passion for cooking and being in nature.
Beatryce has earned both a Bachelors of Science in Hospitality Business and a Bachelors of Arts in Sociology from Michigan State University.
Erica has previously worked in sales analyzing and assessing client needs to present customized financial solutions. She has also worked at various small and start up marketing agencies branding and creating content for multiple companies.
At The Atlas, Erica combines her past experiences and works in support of both the sales and marketing team efforts. She researches and prospects potential clients and assists in establishing initial relationships. She also aids in developing and administering new marketing material.
Erica has a Bachelors of Science in Marketing and Management with a concentration in Entrepreneurship and a minor in Public Relations from the University of South Carolina.
When Erica is not working, she enjoys getting outside hiking or sitting at the beach enjoying the Southern California weather.
Co-founder & Advisor
Dr. Vajjhala is widely recognized as a thought leader in resilient infrastructure design and finance. Shalini currently serves as Executive Director of San Diego Regional Policy and Innovation Center.
Previously, she served as Chief Executive Officer of re:focus partners. She also served as Visiting Associate Professor of Environmental Policy at Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), Special Representative in the Office of Administrator Lisa Jackson at the US Environmental Protection Agency, Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Office of International & Tribal Affairs at the US EPA and Deputy Associate Director for Energy & Climate at the Obama Administration’s White House Council on Environmental Quality.
Shalini received her Ph.D. in Engineering and Public Policy and B.Arch in Architecture from Carnegie Mellon University.
Michael, a 2-term Mayor and 15-year veteran of Philadelphia’s City Council, has dedicated his life to public service and urban innovation. Since leaving government, Mayor Nutter has maintained active involvement in media, public policy, politics, business, and academia across the country. His work includes serving as a Professor of Professional Practice at Columbia University’s SIPA, is a political contributor at CNN, Senior Fellow for Bloomberg Philanthropies’ What Works Cities program, and Chair of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Transportation Equity Advisory Council. In addition, he serves as a Code for America Board member, Distinguished Non-Resident Senior Fellow in Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program, and continues to work with mayors all across the United States through US Conference of Mayors, where he previously served as President, National League of Cities, and Cities United, which he created while mayor of Philadelphia.
Michael has a B.A. in Economics from University of Pennsylvania’s The Wharton School of Business, and Honorary Doctorates in Public Service from Drexel University and Saint Joseph’s University.
Mark Funkhouser is president of Funkhouser & Associates, LLC, an independent consulting firm focused on helping public officials and their private-sector partners create better, more fiscally sustainable communities. He served as mayor of Kansas City, Mo., from 2007 to 2011. Prior to being elected mayor, Funkhouser was the city’s auditor for 18 years and was honored in 2003 as a Governing Public Official of the Year. Before becoming publisher of Governing, he served as director of the Governing Institute.
Funkhouser is an internationally recognized auditing expert, author and teacher in public administration and its fiscal disciplines. He holds an interdisciplinary Ph.D. in public administration and sociology from the University of Missouri at Kansas City, an M.B.A. in accounting and finance from Tennessee State University, and a master’s degree in social work from West Virginia University.
RJ, a former two-term Mayor of Albuquerque, is known for his innovative approach to government. His passion for bringing diverse groups together to solve persistent and complex urban challenges resulted in efficiency measures that produced $34 million in taxpayer savings, expanded use of public-private partnerships, streamlined infrastructure planning and financing, and improvements in educational attainment and workforce development. He oversaw $1.2 billion dollars in infrastructure and public projects during his tenure, including everything from smart city systems such as LED streetlight conversions and renewable energy projects, to more traditional infrastructure like road upgrades and airport improvements. He also oversaw the development of America’s first all-electric bus rapid transit system. Prior to public service, RJ was an accomplished entrepreneur who grew several construction and design/build companies. Since leaving government, RJ has continued his associations with organizations that support urban innovation and the development of next generation’s public-sector leaders including: Cities of Service, Results4America, What Works Cities, Harvard City Leadership Initiative and Yale’s Chief Executive Leadership Institute.
RJ has a BA in Finance and Administration from University of New Mexico.
Deputy City Manager, City of San Jose
Director, Greater Cincinnati Water Works Department
Director of Sustainability & Resilience, City of Orlando
Director of Technology and Innovation, City of Las Vegas
Former Executive Director/Chief Engineer, Camden County Municipal Utilities Authority
Chief Innovation Officer, City of Carlsbad
General Manager, Prince William County Service Authority
Superintendent, Compliance Services Division; Metropolitan Sewer District of Greater Cincinnati
Chief Information Officer, Metropolitan Atlanta Transit Authority
Public Works Director, City of Oakland Park
Former Director of Public Works, City of Pearland, TX
Clarence brings nearly 30 years of experience within the public sector. He most recently served as the Director of Public Works for the City of Pearland, Texas where he provided direction for a team of approximately 150 dedicated staff serving the residents of Pearland through numerous divisions including Fleet, Right of Way, Streets & Drainage, Water Production, Wastewater Treatment, Distribution & Collections, Facilities Maintenance, Environmental Sciences and Administration.
His previous experience includes serving as the City of Houston Wastewater Operations Section for nearly 9 years in various roles including that of Assistant Director. Clarence also serves on the Board of Directors of the Gulf Coast Water Authority, is a Past President of the Texas Water Utilities Association Gulf Area District and is an Enviro Mentor for the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.
Clarence holds degrees in Environmental Science and Music, as well as Class “A” licenses from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality in both Water and Wastewater Treatment. Additionally, he earned the Certified Water Professional Credential from Texas A&M University.