2021: A New National Advisory Council

Today, we’re announcing some changes to how the National Advisory Council (NAC) will be structured. Here’s what you need to know:

Important Dates

Candidate declaration period closed at 11:59 pm PST on Sunday, February 21, 2021

Voting opens on Monday, February 22, 2021

Voting closes at 11:59 pm PST on Sunday, March 21, 2021

The 2021 NAC class will be announced on Friday, March 26, 2021

New, better-defined Role and Responsibility of NAC

:speech_balloon: :movie_camera: Watch our NAC info session workshop.

Over the past few months, the National Advisory Council and the Network Team have been working together to develop new, clearer roles and responsibilities for NAC. These are documented here; this document will continue to be developed by the NAC Election working group (join #nac_elections on Slack for the most up to date information and to join the working group), and by NAC itself as we move into 2021. NAC candidates especially should familiarise themselves with this document, as it defines the role they will be expected to fill if they are elected.

An all-regional NAC

When NAC was first launched in 2016, it consisted of nine members, elected from Brigades around the country. As the Network has grown, NAC has evolved: in 2020, the four “at-large” NAC seats which would have been up for election were converted to regional seats, elected by and representing Brigade members in the Northeast, South, Central, and West regions.

In 2021, we’re completing the move towards regional representation, and adding one seat to NAC for a total of 10. We’re also moving from 4 regions to 5: Northeast, Southeast, Midwest, Mountain West, and Pacific. Each of these regions will elect two NAC members, one from a “small” brigade, and one from a “large” Brigade.


NAC candidates must be members of an active Brigade. As in previous years, anyone who is a) a member of an active Brigade, and b) has completed the Code for America Network Census that year (even if you have completed it previously) is eligible to vote. All Brigade members in a given region will vote for a representative from a large Brigade in their region in even years, and for a representative from a small Brigade representative in odd years, regardless of what size Brigade the voter belongs to. We will outline the intent and breakdown behind small & large Brigades below.

Because the four Regional NAC members elected in 2020 will serve two-year terms, 6 of NAC’s 10 seats are up for election in 2021:

To determine which seat you may be eligible for, please reference this document which outlines which Brigades are classified as “small” and which as “large”


Large: Thad Kerosky (Code for Boston; seat up for election 2022)

Small: up for election 2021


Large: Tyrek Shepherd (Code for Atlanta; seat up for election 2022)

Small: up for election 2021


Large: vacant; up for election 2021

Small: Janet Michaelis (Code for Dayton; seat up for election 2022)

Mountain West:

Large: vacant; up for election 2021

Small: vacant; up for election 2021


Large: Bonnie Wolfe (Hack for LA; seat up for election 2022)

Small: up for election 2021

NAC’s five at-large members’ terms are ending, and most are not eligible to run for re-election. They represent the following Brigades:

Em Burnett (Open Maine; Northeast - Small)
Nina Kin (Hack for LA; Pacific - Large)
Melanie Mazanec (Code for Philly; Northeast - Large)
Sabrah n’haRaven (Code for Asheville; Southeast - Small)
Ben Trevino (Code for Hawai’i; Pacific - Small)

Which region is my Brigade in? What size is it? Why the distinction?

The NAC and elections committee, in pivoting to a regional model, wanted to maintain an ability to elevate the voices of Brigade members from smaller localities. We saw that a potential adverse side effect of voting by region was that members from Brigades with large memberships could end up representing most of the NAC. A complete list of current, active Brigades, and their region/size classification can be found here. Brigade size was determined by a combination of the population of the Metropolitan Statistical Area in which they are located, with adjustments made based on what we know about individual Brigades. Roughly 1/3 of Brigades in each region is classified as “Large;” the remaining 2/3 are “Small.”

You can also find a map of these Brigades on the “Map of Regions” tab of the Brigade region/size document.

Who can I contact with questions?
For more information, join #nac_elections on Slack, contact Will Pfeffer (Sr. Program Manager, Network Team), or any National Advisory Council member!