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The first member of Generation Z to be elected to Congress, Maxwell Alejandro Frost is proud to represent the people of Central Florida (FL-10) in the United States House of Representatives. As a young Member of Congress and Afro-Latino, Congressman Frost brings a fresh, progressive perspective to an institution formerly out of reach for young, working Black and Latino Americans.
As a former organizer, musician, and community activist, Frost was inspired to get to work at 15 years old after the tragic mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary claimed the lives of 26 innocent people. From that moment on, Frost dedicated his life to fighting against gun violence and empowering communities across Florida and the U.S. to get behind gun reform, including joining forces with those affected by the Parkland and Pulse shootings to shed light on this epidemic. In 2016, after years of organizing and advocacy work, Frost himself became a survivor of gun violence after witnessing a shooting in downtown Orlando. The experience only further committed Frost to fight for commonsense solutions to this senseless loss of life through leadership roles at ACLU and eventually March for Our Lives, where he served as National Organizing Director.
Now, as a freshman member, Frost has been appointed to the powerful Committee on Oversight and Accountability, where he will deliver on his mission of ushering justice and transparency to Floridians while fighting against House Republicans extremist attempts to politicize the work of the committee by attacking democracy and promoting ridiculous MAGA conspiracies.
Elinor R. Tatum
Elinor R. Tatum is the Publisher and Editor-In-Chief of Amsterdam News. Tatum’s contributions began when she was appointed to her position by her father Wilbert Tatum in 1997, becoming one of the youngest publishers in the history of the Afro-American press. Under her leadership the newspaper weathered the most challenging era in American newspaper history which left fully 25% of all local newspapers shuttered. Today Tatum set in motion the newspaper’s digital transformation including a new web newspaper and a weekday email newsletter, the acclaimed Editorially Black. Most recently, Tatum conceived of the historic collaboration of Black publishers now known as Word In Black – receiving ever increasing national attention and funding. An experienced media voice, Elinor Tatum produced and co-hosted a weekly segment of Al Sharpton’s radio show Keepin’ It Real — inviting members of the Black Press to discuss national issues facing the African-American community for several years. She guest hosted the WWRL Radio morning and afternoon drive programs.
Tatum was born and raised in New York City where she attended Hunter College Elementary School and then the Dwight School. She studied Government at St. Lawrence University in Canton, New York, graduating in 1993, continuing her education at Stockholm University in Stockholm, Sweden. In 1994, Tatum returned to New York to join her father at Amsterdam News, promoted to Associate Publisher and Chief Operating Officer in 1996. In December 1997, she completed the coursework for her Master’s Degree in Journalism and Mass Communication at NYU and was promoted to Publisher and Editor-in-Chief.
In addition to her career in journalism, Tatum is also an active member of the greater New York community. She is currently a member of the Board of Trustees of her college alma mater, St. Lawrence University. In addition she sits on the Board of the New York Urban League, The Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem, and the Creative Vision Foundation. She also sits on Manhattan Community Board 3.
Speakers & Moderators
Jennifer Mascia is a senior news writer and founding staffer at The Trace, the only newsroom that exclusively covers gun violence, which launched in 2015. She previously reported on gun violence for The New York Times, where she began her career as a news assistant. She also served as the lead writer for the Times’s annual Neediest Cases campaign, which profiles New Yorkers in need, and wrote and produced The Gun Report, a daily tally of gun violence victims in America that ran for a year and a half after the Sandy Hook shooting. She is a graduate of Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and CUNY Hunter College. In 2010, she authored a memoir about her father’s criminal past, Never Tell Our Business to Strangers.
The deputy chief counsel at Giffords Law Center. As part of Giffords Law Center’s litigation team, David pursues affirmative litigation and defends laws that enhance firearm safety. He also drafts and analyzes gun legislation and works to promote federal, state, and local policies designed to prevent gun violence. David helps manage the Firearms Accountability Counsel Taskforce(FACT), a joint effort of leading gun violence prevention organizations working with the nation’s preeminent law firms to reduce gun violence.
David holds a BA from Providence College, an AM in English and American literature from Washington University in St. Louis, and a JD from Columbia Law School.
Kerri Raissian is an Associate Professor of Public Policy at the University of Connecticut and the founding Director of UConn’s Center for Advancing Research, Methods, and Scholarship (ARMS) in Gun Injury Prevention. She also serves on Connecticut’s Commission for Community Gun Violence Intervention and Prevention and is a Niskanen Senior Fellow.
She is particularly interested in understanding how to reduce domestic violence, improve child well-being, and reduce gun-related death and injury. Her research employs causal inference techniques to understand how policies, programs, and other interventions affect family safety and child well-being. She also uses descriptive tools – such as surveys and interviews – to measure and understand citizen support for firearm interventions, such as secure firearm storage and permitless carry of firearms.
In partnership with Cassandra Crifasi and Jennifer Dineen, she co-edited Preventing Gun Violence in America: What Works and What is Possible, a volume of The ANNALS of The American Academy of Political and Social Science. This collection of scholarship is the first multidisciplinary review of gun violence and prevention strategies in the U.S. Her work has also been published in the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management (JPAM), Social Forces, Review of Economics of the Household, Child Abuse & Neglect, Child Maltreatment, Population Research and Policy Review, among others.
Raissian holds a Ph.D. and MPA in public administration from Syracuse University’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs and a BA from Vanderbilt University.
Cheryl W. Thompson
Cheryl W. Thompson is an investigative correspondent for NPR and senior editor overseeing Member station investigations.
Since becoming the inaugural editor of the stations investigations team in 2021, where she is a player/coach, she has collaborated with Member stations in Texas, California, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Missouri, Montana, Oregon and Washington, and with Columbia University and several nonprofits, to do award-winning work, including “Hot Days: Heat’s Mounting Death Toll on Workers in the U.S.,” an investigation into how Black and brown workers in the U.S. were dying on the job for lack of water and shade breaks.
Prior to joining NPR in January 2019, Thompson spent 22 years at The Washington Post, where she wrote extensively about law enforcement, political corruption and guns, and was a White House correspondent during Barack Obama’s first term. Thompson is the past president of Investigative Reporters and Editors, a 6,000-member organization whose mission is to improve the quality of investigative journalism. In 2018, she became the first Black elected president in its 43-year history and served for three terms before being elected board chairman in 2021. She also teaches investigative reporting as an associate professor at GWU, where she founded a student NABJ chapter in 2014, and is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.
Alex R. Piquero
Alex R. Piquero is a Professor in the Department of Sociology & Criminology and Arts & Sciences, a Distinguished Scholar at the University of Miami and previously served as the Director of the
Bureau of Justice Statistics, one of the nation’s thirteen federal statistical agencies (appointed
by President Biden, June 2022). Dr. Piquero is a nationally and internationally recognized
criminologist with more than 26 years of experience. Over the course of his career, Dr. Piquero
has given congressional testimony on evidence-based crime prevention practices and has
provided counsel and support to several local, state, national and international criminal justice
agencies and elected leaders. His expertise ranges from criminal careers to criminal justice
policy and crime prevention to the intersection of race/ethnicity and crime, with a focus on
quantitative methodology. Dr. Piquero has published over 500 scholarly articles and several
books and is among the most highly cited criminologists in the world. He also served as editor of
the Journal of Quantitative Criminology and the Justice Evaluation Journal. He is a Fellow of
both the American Society of Criminology and the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences. In
2019, he received the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences Bruce Smith Sr. Award for
outstanding contributions to criminal justice, and in 2020, he received the Lifetime Achievement
Award from the Division of Developmental and Life-Course Criminology of the American Society