Subject Matter Experts

Sunlight has a number of spokespeople on staff who are subject matter experts in their field of work. Our experts can provide you with critical insight into the changing regulations and cutting-edge technologies that are transforming our government and the way that the public interacts with their elected officials. Contact the Communications team (at right) to arrange an interview or speaking opportunity.

John Wonderlich

Acting Executive Director


John Wonderlich is acting executive director for the Sunlight Foundation and one of the nation’s foremost advocates for open government. John spearheads Sunlight’s goal of changing the government by opening up key data sources and information to make government more accountable to citizens. He is one of the foremost authorities on transparency policy, from legislation and accountability in Congress to ethics and information policy in the executive branch. John has spoken internationally on technology and transparency and has testified before the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee and the House Energy and Commerce Committee. He has appeared on NPR, Fox News and C-SPAN, and his expertise has been cited by The New York Times, The Washington Post and other media outlets.

Press photos: Wide Portrait (8MB)


Emily Shaw

Senior Analyst


Emily Shaw is a Senior Analyst at the Sunlight Foundation, where she helps the organization lead the charge to make useful public information available online. Emily writes and speaks regularly on topics related to public data access. She has presented before a wide variety of local and national audiences and regularly provides insights to media outlets across the country. Before coming to the Sunlight Foundation, Emily served as a professor of political science at Thomas College in Waterville, Maine. She has worked for a range of civil and human rights organizations including Human Rights Watch, the ACLU, the American Friends Service Committee and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. Emily holds a Ph.D. in Political Science (UC Berkeley) and retains a great love for formal academics, but now sees the blog as her classroom and the world as her library.


Alex Howard

Senior Analyst


Alexander B. Howard is a senior analyst at the Sunlight Foundation. Previously, he was the first senior editor for technology and society at the Huffington Post, a columnist at TechRepublic and a contributor to TechPresident, among many other publications, a consultant, moderator and researcher. In 2013, he founded, a blog focused on open government and technology.

Howard has been recognized twice by The Washingtonian Magazine as one of Washington’s “TechTitans,” which called him a “respected trend-spotter and chronicler of government’s use of new media.” He has appeared on-air as an analyst for NPR, WHYY, WAMU, Al Jazeera English, Al Jazeera America, Washington Post TV, WJLA and a guest on The Kojo Nnamdi Show. From April 2010 to May 2013, he was the Washington Correspondent for Radar at O’Reilly Media. Prior to joining O’Reilly, he was the associate editor of and at TechTarget, where he wrote about how the laws and regulations that affect information technology are changing. (He’s also been a teacher, carpenter, waiter, cook, clerk, “knowledge broker,” and Web designer.)

Howard has held fellowships at the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia Journalism School and the Networked Transparency Policy Project in the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. He graduated from Colby College with a B.A. in Biology. He now resides in the District of Columbia with his family.


Melissa Yeager

Senior Staff Writer

Melissa Yeager is a Senior Staff Writer at the Sunlight Foundation.

She comes to the Sunlight Foundation with a background in television news. She has worked as a reporter at television stations in Topeka, Kan., Fort Smith, Ark., Springfield, Mo., Fort Myers, Fla., and Kansas City, Mo. Her regional Emmy-nominated online series “The Dark State” showed how law enforcement in Kansas were able to operate under a veil of secret unlike any other state because probable cause affidavits were not public record. The series showed how people spent thousands of dollars fighting in court for information about their own arrests and searches in their own homes. The series helped propel Kansas state lawmakers to pass a partial opening of those records.

Melissa is a recipient of two regional Emmy awards, a regional Edward R. Murrow award and was part of the investigative team at KSHB in Kansas City awarded Columbia University’s prestigious Alfred I. duPont award. She is a graduate of the William Allen White School of Journalism at the University of Kansas and is currently pursuing a master’s degree at American University.

Press photos: Wide Portrait (1MB)


Stephen Larrick

Open Data Project Lead


Stephen Larrick is Open Data Project Lead for the Sunlight Foundation, where he works as part of the policy team to promote transparency and open government at the local level. His current efforts focus on facilitating the adoption of meaningful and sustainable open data policies in mid-sized american cities participating in the What Works Cities initiative.

Prior to joining Sunlight, Larrick was Director of Planning and Economic Development for the City of Central Falls, Rhode Island where helped lead a successful turnaround effort during a time of extreme fiscal crisis. In addition to his duties as city planner, he worked closely with two state-appointed receivers and one mayor to rethink local government service delivery with a heavy emphasis on open and inclusive governance. Larrick received his Bachelor’s of Arts in Urban Studies and Political Philosophy from Brown University.

Press photos: Wide Portrait (1MB)