Our Team

Student Leadership

Katelynn Gilbert // Club President // UNC Chapel Hill

Elizabeth Wilson // Club President // North Carolina State University

Our Staff

Katie Craig  //  State Director

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Katie Craig is the State Director for NCPIRG. Before stepping into her current role, Katie was the Organizing Director for NCPIRG Campus Action, running NCPIRG’s campus program across the state. As a NCPIRG Campus Organizer, Katie organized a team of interns on campaigns to make UNC Chapel Hill more sustainable, increase student access to voting, and make college more affordable. Katie graduated from UNC Chapel Hill herself, where she got involved with NCPIRG and lead an initiative to partner with UNC’s Department of Housing and created a program to provide Voter Registration forms and assistance filling them out to over 10,000 students each fall when they move into their dorms.

Manny Rin  //  Organizing Director

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Manny oversees NCPIRG’s organizing work on college campuses across North Carolina. Manny got his start organizing in 2009 as a student volunteer with CALPIRG and came on to full time staff after he graduated from University of California Davis. During his time with CALPIRG he recruited and trained hundreds of student activists on college campuses across the state, running projects that have registered thousands of students to vote and campaigns to protect California’s air, water and environment.

Kate Safrit  //  Campus Organizer

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Kate is a Campus Organizer with NCPIRG Campus Action working with the club at UNC Chapel Hill as well as other campuses across the state. She graduated from the University of South Carolina with degrees in Political Science and Environmental Studies and a minor in Spanish. Kate was also a Green Greeks Representative for her sorority to Sustainable Carolina. Outside of work, she loves to read and spend time with friends and family.

Maria Ayala  //  Campus Organizer

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Maria is a campus organizer with NCPIRG Campus Action. She organizes primarily at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte which is also where she graduated from. As an undergraduate she facilitated the start up and development of a nonprofit and worked with a team of interns to support and grow local nonprofits. She started with NCPIRG as an intern where she worked on the Break Free From Plastics and New Voters Project campaigns. Maria enjoys reading and being in nature.

Leigh-Anne Cole // President, Board of Directors

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Leigh-Anne is President of the Board of Directors for NCPIRG. She coordinated the Student PIRGs’ New Voters Project from 2008 to 2012, which registered more than 300,000 people to vote and made more than 1 million “get-out-the-vote” contacts. As Director of Recruitment for The Public Interest Network, she recruited thousands of candidates to apply to join our network, hundreds of whom have found jobs or careers here, while others have gone on to pursue other public interest positions. Leigh-Anne lives in Somerville, Massachusetts, where she loves to go hiking with her dog, Aspen, and her daughter, Rosie.

Dan Xie  //  Political Director

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Dan directs the national political strategy and grant fundraising for the Student PIRGs. Dan has managed successful campaigns from coast to coast to cap global warming pollution, fight the high cost of higher education, and make voting more accessible for students. She has recruited and trained hundreds of students and staff on public interest campaigns. Dan lives in St. Petersburg, Fla., where she is an avid cyclist and climber.