Who We Are
The Association of Young Americans (AYA)
is a nonprofit, nonpartisan membership-based organization with one mission: to give young people control of their future.
We have full-time, registered lobbyists working around-the-clock in Washington to advance policies that improve the lives of young people aged 18-35--specifically those related to student debt, climate change, and healthcare.
Our strength is in our numbers. We are 30,000+ members strong, spanning across all 50 states. Our lobbying team listens closely to our membership’s wants and needs and communicates those wants and needs directly to lawmakers to amplify young voices at all levels of government. We work to get young people involved directly in the political process, offering tools for advocacy as well as grassroots lobbying training.
AYA was founded
Suspension on Student Loan Payments
Employer Participation in Repayment Act
Student debt cancelled for defrauded borrowers
Extension on student loan payment suspension
Public Service Loan Forgiveness program overhaul
Ben BrownFounder and Advisor
Ben is the Founder and former Executive Director of AYA. He started AYA to give young people a seat at the political decision-making table, and continues to support AYA as an advisor.
Lisa GiordanoExecutive Director
As AYA's Director, Lisa makes sure that AYA is meeting our legislative goals and best serving our membership. Lisa has been with AYA since the very beginning, originally working in comms to establish AYA's voice.
Ally TalcottLegislative Council
Ally is AYA's fierce lobbyist advocating on Capitol Hill to advance the issues we care about. Ally works closely with our coalition allies, staff on the Hill, and press to make sure the policies that will affect positive change for young Americans are being enacted into law.
Albert SamrethWeb Designer
Albert is an artist and web designer, part of the design practice Collection Agency. He made the thing that you're clicking on.
Michael Ray-VonWeb Developer
Michael is an artist and web developer, part of the design practice Collection Agency. He made the thing that you're clicking on.
Emily ShettyLegislative Council
A political and advocacy insider, Emily supports AYA's healthcare agenda on Capitol Hill. With nearly a decade and a half of political and policy experience at the federal, state and local levels, Emily works hard to ensure AYA's priorities are heard by the right people.
Galia is a designer and artist with footing in social practice. She centers her work on establishing and growing AYA’s visual identity with accessible, relatable, and playful designs for all platforms.
Layla is AYA's "very online" communications manager. She works to keep AYA's membership informed and engaged across digital platforms and to strengthen partnerships within AYA's coalitions.
Board of Directors
Tylik is the National Director of Youth and College and Senior Policy Advisor for the National Action Network, one of the nation's leading civil rights organizations. He works to educate lawmakers and stakeholders on the challenges and opportunities facing communities by advocating for more resources and policies that help advance economic and social equality.
Jessica is a community organizer who has worked with organizations such as March for Our Lives and the California Democratic Party. Her passion is working within the community to uplift it.
Graeme is government and public sector consultant based out of D.C. He currently serves on the Youth Advisory Board for Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights, Speak Truth to Power, which aims to engage, educate, and equip young activists with human rights education and tools for organizing.
Stefani is a PR professional who develops and implements thoughtful comms strategies for her clients and helps them effectively engage key stakeholders. She enjoys mentoring students & young professionals and using her expertise to give back to her community, focusing on socioeconomic justice.