who we are
Way to Win works with coalition of funders and organizations including Women Donors Network Action, Movement Voter Project, Solidaire Action Fund, Democracy in Color, Propel Capital, The Solutions Project, and Groundswell Action Fund. We seek to embody a shared ethos of political funding that brings together near-term strategic wins and long-term power building.
Way to Win Co-Founder & President
Founding Executive Director, Texas Future Project
Tory Gavito is President of Way to Win and is responsible for steering the vision and strategy of the power network of donors and strategists. Prior to Way to Win, Tory was Founding Executive Director of the Texas Future Project. Under Tory’s leadership, the Texas donor table transformed from an idea to a powerhouse institution; established the Texas Future Project Research Center; and developed and financed a strategic plan to make Texas competitive statewide by 2022. Alongside powerbuilding strategists, Tory organized donors around races that culminated bringing the loss margin in Texas to a mere 2-points in 2018, making it a battleground 2020. Tory has a JD from Saint Mary’s University School of Law, was an advocate for immigrants in the workplace for a decade, and grounds her work in movement-building. Tory’s career is inspired by her grandmother and namesake, who immigrated to Texas from Mexico in the 1940s.
Way to Win Co-Founder & Vice President
Co-Founder and Former Executive Director, Solidaire
Leah co-founded Solidaire, a network of philanthropists who are committed to funding social movements with a focus on racial and economic justice. For the first five years, she served as Founding Executive Director and grew the membership from a small handful of progressives to a vibrant community of over 160 members. Leah has a PhD from Princeton University, where she studied religious philosophy and political theory and wrote her dissertation on the history of the concept of solidarity. She has served on numerous boards, and acts as an advisor to her family foundation, the Sister Fund. Her writings have been featured in The Nation, Huffington Post and Politico, and she has been profiled by Salon, Avenue Magazine, and San Francisco Magazine. Born and raised in New York City, she has lived in Egypt, Syria and the West Bank, and now resides in San Francisco.
Jenifer Fernandez Ancona
Way to Win Co-Founder
Vice President of Strategy & Member Engagement, Women Donors Network
Jenifer helps to run WDN, a national community of 220 progressive women donors who leverage their wealth, power, and community for a more fair, just, and sustainable world. Jenifer also directs WDN Action, a 501(c)(4) organization advancing justice through advocacy, funding, and civic engagement of underrepresented communities. She has a wide range of experience in communications, donor organizing, strategy development, grassroots organizing, and multi-racial coalition building. Jenifer has worked as Director of Strategic Communications at Citizen Engagement Laboratory, as a consultant to the Democracy Alliance, as a top legislative aide in the California State Assembly, and as a news reporter for the Los Angeles Times. Jenifer holds a BS degree in journalism from Northern Arizona University. She lives in Oakland with her husband, Dan Ancona, and their 7-year-old son.
Nicole is a Vice President of Way to Win, working on the larger landscape of partnerships to strengthen and create the infrastructure needed to win elections, advance transformative policy, and build lasting power. Prior to Way to Win, Nicole was the Co-Executive Director of the California Donor Table, where she worked with a broad base of funders, political donors, labor leaders, practitioners and state and local community leaders to invest in and support the civic engagement and electoral priorities of California’s new majority communities. As a queer, multiracial Pacific Islander and first generation high school and college graduate, she has a deep commitment to equity, and brings over fifteen years’ of local, state and national experience leading racial, economic and climate justice organizations. Nicole serves on the boards of Groundswell Action Fund, Outdoor Afro, Asian Pacific Environmental Network (APEN), and is an advisor to Threshold Foundation’s Climate Strategies Funding Circle.
Director of Programs & Operations
Tori joined Way to Win at its founding in 2017 and currently serves as Director of Programs and Operations. Miyagi marshals internal resources and organises programming and services for Way’s power network of donors and organisers. Tori was previously Program Manager and principal deputy of a philanthropic fund at the Democracy Alliance where he managed the funding process for a portfolio of high-performing power building organisations on behalf of individual and institutional donors. Within progressive philanthropy, Tori constantly advocates for under-resourced communities and their most authentic leaders. Tori is a member of Asian Americans / Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy (AAPIP), Funders for LGBTQ Issues, and the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE). Tori was born and raised in a union family on O‘ahu island in Hawai‘i. He remains Okinawan American.
ELISE Jangmi PYO
Director of Design
Elise is a modern day nomad, who has spent the past 25 years traversing the globe. After moving to NYC, she joined The Public Society, a design-thinking firm focused on creative disruption. Elise became deeply involved in environmental and social justice work there, partnering with clients including Greenpeace, Avaaz, the Carbon XPRIZE, The Rockefeller Foundation, Beautiful Solutions (with Naomi Klein), The Urban Future Lab, The NYU Entrepreneurial Institute, Conergy, and Mosaic Solar. She previously worked with Solidaire and Solidaire Action Fund, where she helped to launch the Emergent Fund and design the JustFund portal. Elise believes that design and inclusive innovation are powerful tools for transformation: they help us see a more just and beautiful world is possible, and invite us to join in its creation. In 2018, she moved from Brooklyn, New York to O‘ahu, Hawai‘i where she now resides as a proud Korean-German-American hapa. She enjoys playing with her baby niece, hiking/swimming/reveling in the glory of nature, and cruising in her EV with the windows down and radio up.
Director of Political Strategy
Born in Louisiana and raised in Northern Virginia, Kellie started her political career in 5th grade when share acted as Bill Clinton’s campaign manager in her school’s mock presidential election. Since then she had made a career of advocating for a variety of progressive causes, including working for Planned Parenthood, USAID, the Democratic National Committee, Unity ‘09, and EMILY’s List. Most recently she was the Director of Partnerships & Training at the Ballot Initiative Strategy Center where she provided strategic assistance to national and in-state partners, directed and expanded the training and state legislative programs, and led planning for the annual Road Ahead Conference. Kellie graduated from Wake Forest University, where she studied Political Science, German, and International Studies.
Director of Political Strategy
Colleen Loper is Director of Political Strategy at Way to Win. She is a queer feminist who has been working to empower women, young folks, and communities who haven't been lifted up in Texas, Nevada, and Florida as well as across the nation through her consulting work. She has been the Deputy Director of the Texas Future Project where she advised how to best leverage investments in Texas infrastructure to build power for independent political organizations while also strategizing how to win near-term elections for long-term people power. And, she has worked in many fields of campaign work from field to communications to political, having managed campaigns as well as recruited and trained pro-choice Democratic women to run for office. She knows that the strategy of winning close races lives in the creative space where data meets culture. She is a 4th generation Texan from a union home, graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, Women Donors Network Reflective Democracy Grantee, and an alumna of the Obama campaign and Annie's List. Recently, she's become an avid fan of swimming with turtles (aka scuba diving) and is always looking for suggestions of where to dive next.
Director of Membership
Leah is joining the Way to Win team as the Director of Membership where she will help build out the organizations systems to create a seamless process for engaging with our community of supporters. Leah has years of experience building successful donor programs in the nonprofit and political space. Prior to joining Way to Win, Leah developed Vote Solar’s first ever individual giving program which lead to unprecedented organizational growth. Working alongside Tom Steyer, she was instrumental in raising millions of dollars for NextGen Climate’s political efforts. While channeling resources into action is Leah’s primary passion, she also has deep experience in organizing and running successful grassroots campaigns. A (very proud) Vermonter, she has a BA in US Politics and Environmental Policy and Decision Making from the University of Puget Sound. In her free time, she enjoys getting outside as much as possible, traveling, and hanging with her three chickens.
Dailey is an Alabama native with a long time interest in politics and social reform. She graduated from the College of Charleston in 2015 with a political science degree, and she spent most of her senior year working for Charleston’s mayoral candidate Ginny Deerin. Dailey is poised to bring her project management and administrative experience to the senior leadership of Way To Win, fulfilling her passion to help advance long-lasting progressive change. Before joining the team, Dailey worked for nationally-known artist Chris Roberts-Antieau, supporting the growth of Antieau's three gallery spaces, assisting the gallery director, and managing the artist's studio. She also previously worked as an executive assistant and paralegal to a prominent New Orleans attorney. Dailey resides in Austin, TX.
Senior Fellow – Transitioning from Director of Resource Strategy on July 1
Taylor is a Swiss Army practitioner, equal parts organizer, political strategist, philanthropic advisor, and writer. She was on the ground floor of Way to Win, where she helped lead both communications and advising for our community of more than 100 individual donors, funds, and foundations. She now serves as a Senior Fellow for Way to Win, where she’s helping lead an exciting new aspect of our work: shifting the political and cultural narrative in the run-up to 2020. Over the past decade, Taylor has helped move more than $40 million to impact elections and public policy in 29 states, including for historic fights like restoration of voting rights for formerly incarcerated people, advancing protections for immigrant communities, wage increases, expansion of voting rights through election modernization and democracy reform, stopping omnibus targeted regulation of abortion providers, and more. Taylor has been published by the Harvard Law and Policy Review and the campaigns and progressive power building work she’s been a part of have been recognized in the New York Times, HuffPost, NBC News, The Daily Beast, and numerous other national and local news outlets.
Malcolm Hunt-Hendrix is a spunky maltipoo – and the official mascot of Way to Win! With us since the very beginning, he's livened strategy meetings, cheered us on through tough brainstorms, and continues to bring his energy and joy to staff gatherings. In his free time, he enjoys running in circles, barking at big dogs, and saying hi to new friends.