2012 Fellow: Jesse Cottrell (AEPD)
Jesse Alejandro Cottrell began his advocacy work in San Francisco, California, working for a number of youth empowerment organizations and programs, including Park Sessions, which he helped found. This led to Jesse's eventual appointment to the San Francisco Youth Commission, where he helped shepherd comment on education, juvenile justice, and other legislative issues before San Francisco's Board of Supervisors.

In his second term at the Commission, Jesse was elected Chair. Jesse attained his Bachelor's Degree in Literature and Music from Bennington College in 2006. After spending three years as a bandleader and songwriter in New York City, Jesse returned to non-profit work to serve as Associate Director and Development Coordinator at Salem Art Works, a regional arts center and residency space in Upstate New York.

Jesse is currently pursuing a Master of International Affairs degree at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA). He also continues his pursuit of music, currently writing his second musical.

This summer he will work with the Association for the Empowerment of People with Disabilities (AEPD) in Vietnam.
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