Our Staff

Marcela Howell, Founder and Executive Director

Marcela Howell

Marcela has over 40 years of experience advocating for women’s rights, reproductive health and justice and women’s empowerment. Prior to founding In Our Own Voice, she served as senior policy and communications consultant for Communications Consortium Media Center (CCMC). She is the former vice president of policy, communications and marketing at Advocates for Youth, a non-profit organization that works on adolescent sexual and reproductive health issues. She has a Masters in Literature from Saint Louis University and a JD from Pepperdine School of Law.


Heidi Williamson, Deputy Director of Strategic Partnerships

Heidi Williamson

Heidi Williamson is the deputy director of strategic partnerships at In Our Own Voice, responsible for supervising and coordinating the development and implementation, and evaluation of In Our Own Voice’s strategic partnership work. Prior to joining the Agenda, Heidi worked for the Center for American Progress and the Center for American Progress Action Fund, the Alzheimer’s Association, SisterSong and the Services Employee International Union (SEIU). Heidi has a degree in English and African American studies from Georgia State University.


Jessica Pinckney, Deputy Director of Government Affairs

Jessica Pinckney

Jessica Pinckney is the deputy director of government affairs at In Our Own Voice, responsible for coordinating the development, implementation, and evaluation of In Our Own Voice’s national and state policy work. She previously served as government relations manager for YWCA USA. Jessica holds a M.A. in Government with a concentration in Political Communications from John’s Hopkins University and a B.A. in Political Science with an emphasis in Public Service from the University of California, Santa Barbara.


Donna Morris, Director of Administration

Donna Morris

Donna is the Director of Administration for In Our Own Voice. Previously she served as the administrative director at Communications Consortium Media Center (CCMC). She is the Founder & CEO of Xtra Pair of Hands DC, an events planning & staffing company she started in 2001 which currently employs fifteen staff and has over 300 clients in the DC Metropolitan area. She has a degree in Business Administration from the University of Pittsburgh.


Emmanuela Jean-Etienne, Policy Manager

Emmanuela Jean-Etienne

Emmanuela Jean-Etienne is the policy manager of government affairs and a Georgetown Women’s Law and Public Policy Fellow. She supports the government affairs team through research and writing. Emmanuela is a graduate of the University of Michigan Law School, and she received her B.A. in Public Policy Studies from Duke University.


Shontelle Dixon, Program Manager for the Next Generation Leadership Program

Shontelle Dixon

Shontelle Dixon is the program manager for the Next Generation Leadership Program, a leadership development program for students from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). Prior to joining In Our Own Voice, she has worked for the Association of Reproductive Health Professionals and Tulsa City-County Health Department. She has a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Biology from Baker University and a Masters of Public Health in Health Promotion Sciences from The University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.


Jamor Gaffney, Manager for Strategic Partnerships

Jamor Gaffney

Jamor Gaffney is responsible for developing strategic initiatives to grow, engage, and maintain strategic networks of In Our Own Voice. Prior to joining In Our Own Voice, Jamor was a Humanities teacher and Associate Director of Equity and Inclusion at Indian Creek School. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in African American Studies and Public Policy from the University of Maryland.


Nichelle Wilson, Office Manager

Nichelle Wilson

Nichelle is the Office Manager for In Our Own Voice. Prior to working for In Our Own Voice, Nichelle worked for Regus as a community manager and Inter Solution. She received her education from Everest College in Arlington, VA.