Emily Hein

Operations Manager
emily [at] engageva.org

Nico Climaco

Leadership Development Manager
nico [at] engageva.org

Irene Shin

Executive Director
irene [at] engageva.org

Michelle Moffit

Data + Technology Manager
michelle [at] engageva.org

Nick Gothard

Election Protection Manager
nick [at] engageva.org


Denise Harrington

League of Women Voters of Virginia

Kate West

Sierra Club

Freddy Mejia

The Commonwealth Institute

Kirk Jones

A. Philip Randolph Institute

Harrison Wallace

The Climate & Clean Energy Equity Fund

Shonta Mills


Jess Unger

Southern Poverty Law Center

Sookyung Oh

Hamkae Center

Emily Hein

Nico Climaco

Nico currently resides on occupied Nacotchatnk land (Washington, DC), and joined VCET in January of 2022. As the Leadership Development Manager, they primarily support the Virginia Progressive Leadership Program. Passionate about social justice, collective liberation, and community solutions, Nico finds home in collective and visionary spaces woven together by queer and trans people. A proud JMU alum, they are currently pursuing a Next Economy MBA with LIFT Economy. 

Nico learned some of their most important political lessons outside the classroom and was first politicized in high school by learning about the ongoing genocide in Darfur and their own Filipino and Puerto Rican diaspora. As a facilitator, Nico draws on the teachings of Paulo Freire and bell hooks with a lens of popular education and experiential learning. They are invested in co-creating loving spaces and considers relationships & community to be the basis of their work. Nico’s biggest role models are Gizmo the gremlin, HIM from Powerpuff Girls, and the nerds from nerds candy.

Irene Shin

Irene serves as the Executive Director of VCET. Prior to VCET, she served as the Senior Director at Crowdpac, a tech platform focused on combating the influence of big money in politics. Recently, Irene was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates, becoming the first Korean American woman to serve in the General Assembly. She also serves on the Boards of NAKASEC, the Competitive Commonwealth Fund, and Sister District Project.

Irene, her fiancé, and dog live in the Town of Herndon. In her free time, Irene enjoys… wait what? Free time? What’s that? Fun fact, Irene learned to play the ukulele and bake sourdough during the pandemic.

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