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January 16, 2019

Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley Announces Congressional Staff Hires

Washington, D.C., January 16, 2019 — Today, Representative Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), announced key staff hires. Sworn in on January 3rd, Pressley represents Massachusetts’ 7th Congressional District which includes parts of Boston, Cambridge, Somerville, Chelsea, Everett, Randolph and Milton.

“I’m incredibly proud of the team we’re building” said Representative Pressley. “We were sent here to serve the residents of the 7th Congressional District, to take on inequities and disparities back home and to chart a bold path forward. As someone who started my career in government as a caseworker in my Congressman’s district office and spent 16 years as a staffer in the Massachusetts delegation, I know how critical it is to invest in a team of public servants that share your values and your vision.”

Sarah Groh, Chief of Staff. A longtime resident of the 7th, and Pressley’s former Campaign Manager, Groh will serve as Chief of Staff. She brings a decade of experience in Massachusetts and national advocacy work. Past positions include advocacy work at Roxbury’s Horizons for Homeless Children and serving as the Director of Advocacy at America Forward. Groh has a Bachelors Degree from Lesley University and a Masters Degree from Harvard University.

Aissa Canchola, Legislative Director. Most recently Canchola served as a Director at the Penn Hill Group where she worked with advocacy organizations including teachers’ unions and non-profits on a portfolio of education and workforce issues. Previously, Canchola worked for the U.S. Senate including as a committee staff member for the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.

Kalina “Lina” Francis, Communications Director. Under the Obama Administration, Francis served as the Special Advisor to the Office of Public Affairs at the Department of the Treasury.  Francis also served as the Press Secretary for the House Committee on Financial Services under the leadership of Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D-CA).  Most recently, Francis was a Senior Account Supervisor for the Financial Communications team at Edelman. Francis obtained a degree in Communications from the University of Pennsylvania. 

Eric White, District Director. A lifelong Boston resident, White served in the now Congresswoman’s City Council office for the past 5 years, most recently as her Chief of Staff. White is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts.

Lynese Wallace, Policy Advisor. Wallace previously served as Research Director during the Congresswoman’s tenure as a City Councilor At Large. She holds a Bachelors Degree and Masters’ of Public Health from Boston University.

Lona Watts, Director of Scheduling. Watts has spent 7 years on Capitol Hill and has previously worked for Representatives DeLauro, Miller, McDermott, and Polis.

Erina Colombo, Civic Engagement Manager. Previously, Colombo worked on Pressley’s Congressional Campaign as her Deputy Finance Director and her Deputy Political Director. She is a former City Year corps member and also worked for City Year Boston.

Ronald Claude, Field Representative. Claude is a Boston College graduate and previously worked as a Research Assistant at Boston College and as Policy Director in Pressley’s City Council Office.

Colin Remal, Constituent Services Manager. A former Organizer for President Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign, Remal most recently served as Pressley’s Director of Constituent Outreach in her City Council Office.

Dennis Barrett, Legislative Correspondent. Most recently Barrett worked for Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi. His family lives in the 7th Congressional District where his parents serve as Pastors at Jubilee Christian Church in Mattapan. Barrett also worked as a Field Organizer on Martha Coakley’s 2014 Gubernatorial campaign and is a proud graduate of the Posse Program.

Errin Douglas, Staff Assistant. A recent graduate of Salem State University and a longtime resident of Dorchester, Douglas joins Pressley’s team after working as Campaign Coordinator for Representative Liz Miranda’s campaign.

Luz Villar, Executive Assistant. Villar previously served as Pressley’s Scheduler and Community Liaison in her City Council office. She is a Year Up alumna and a graduate of Cambridge College.

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Congresswoman Pressley with Congressional Staff: Left to Right: Luz Villar, Erina Colombo, Lina Francis, Ronald Claude, Eric White, Errin Douglas,
Lona Watts, Congresswoman Pressley, Dennis Barrett, Colin Remal, Sarah Groh, Aissa Canchola, Lynese Wallace.