Shelley Whelpton Vice President of Development
As the Vice President of Business Development & Strategy, Shelley leads the effort at The Sheridan Group to identify the organizations and projects with the most significant potential to use the levers of politics and policy to affect transformative social change. She collaborates with The Sheridan Group team to research, identify, and develop these opportunities. Shelley also provides leadership and management on emerging projects and initiatives.
Shelley was the organization’s lead on the launch of the America Forward, a coalition of leading social entrepreneurs promoting greater competition and accountability in public problem solving. She managed a bipartisan political and communications campaign team to ensure that goals were achieved, including national press coverage and presidential candidate endorsement during the 2008 election. Shelley was the lead investigator and writer of KaBOOM!’s 2009 Play Matters Report, a study of municipal best practices in support of children’s play.
Shelley brings over 15 years of experience in the areas of nonprofit leadership, communications, and advocacy to the firm. Prior to The Sheridan Group, Shelley managed AYUSA International, a nonprofit high school youth exchange program. AYUSA recruits 2,000 high school students from 80 countries around the world for a 10-month home stay. Shelley led a coalition of youth exchange programs to implement the U.S. Department of State sponsored Youth Exchange and Study Program, a post 9/11 exchange initiative with the Middle East.
Shelley has her undergraduate degree in Political Science from Williams College and holds a Masters in Education from Boston University.
Shelley’s volunteer and civic work is focused on youth-related causes. She is a founding Advisory Board member of Running Start, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing political leadership training for girls and young women, and a member of the DC Playworks Board. Shelley is the in-residence Athletic Director at The Sheridan Group, coaching The Sheridan Group sponsored Pee Wee Basketball Team and newly birthed Sheridan Group running team.
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