Our Staff

Ohio Citizen Action Staff

 

Rachael Belz 

Executive Director

 

Rachael is the Executive Director of Ohio Citizen Action and Ohio Consumers Power Alliance: Rachael moved to Cincinnati in 1996 from Clean Water Action in Denver to become Cincinnati area Program Director for Ohio Citizen Action, and has been a leader in working with communities who are affected by toxic chemical pollution.  She pioneered successful “good neighbor campaigns” at Cincinnati Specialties, Rohm and Haas, AK Steel, and Sunoco.  As coal program organizer, Rachael traveled to communities across Ohio in the successful campaign to prevent AMP from building a new coal plant in Southeast Ohio, and played a key role in calling on Ohio utilities to close their highly-polluting plants.   Throughout her years in the organization, Rachael has also played key roles in statewide coordination, including training and supervising new organizers, fundraising and working closely with the field and phone canvass. She currently serves as Executive Director of Ohio Citizen Action, leads the clean energy campaign and serves on the Executive Committee of the RE-AMP network.

Melissa English 

Deputy Director


 

 

Melissa has worked since 1987 in a variety of non-profit organizations. These organizations reflect her social and political values and include a local Public Broadcasting affiliate, Greenpeace, the Urban Appalachian Council, the Cincinnati Arts Association and Ohio Citizen Action. She began with OCA as a field canvasser in 1995 and since then has also done program work, project management, development, communications, board development, grassroots organizing, lobbying and event planning. In 2018, she started Ohio Citizen Action's first major gifts program, including inducting founding members of the Metzenbaum Society. She's served on several non-profit boards, including the Appalachian Connection Editorial Board, Ohio Citizen Action and Community Shares of Greater Cincinnati. She co-founded the Cincinnati Green Group and the Friends of the Great Miami and has twice contributed to the Green Cincinnati Plan. In 2015, she received the Risk Communication Award from the Alliance for Chemical Safety for work to improve fracking chemical disclosure. Melissa also serves as Executive Director of Ohio Citizen Action Education Fund. 

 

 

Lisa Maatz 

Senior Adviser/Organizing Director 

[email protected]

 

 

 

Lisa is a nationally respected advocate in the progressive movement. Her nonprofit career began when she was named Executive Director of Turning Point, a domestic violence program recognized for excellence by the Ohio Supreme Court. Most recently, Lisa served as Vice President of Government Relations and Advocacy for the American Association of University Women in Washington, DC; she has also held adjunct appointments with several universities and worked on Capitol Hill. After more than 20 years of advocacy efforts in our nation's capital, Lisa began a teaching and traveling sabbatical that included moving back home to Cleveland. As she settled in at her lake house and began investigating local opportunities, she came to Ohio Citizen Action in 2019 as a part-time canvasser, and with her extensive background in advocacy, she was hired as Senior Advisor/Organizing Director in 2020.

 

Stephen Gabor 

Membership Director

[email protected]

 

After his promotion to phone canvass director in 2000, Stephen embarked upon a career marked by his incredible perseverance, adaptability, innovation, and leadership.  After leaving OCA in 2012 to help run a successful business, he soon joined the board of directors, but resigned from the board in 2015 to resume his position as phone canvass director. Fast-forward to 2019, where he assumed a much-deserved change of pace and responsibility as OCA's Membership Director. Stephen earned his B.A. from Georgetown University in Political Science with a minor in history. 

 

 

Angela Oster

Digital Communications Director

[email protected]

 

 

Angela has worked for Ohio Citizen Action for more than 20 years, designing our lively and well-regarded website and online organizing programs. She is a graduate of the Cleveland Institute of Art's Technology and Integrated Media Environment (TIME) digital arts program. In 2009, Angela was one of the inaugural recipients of Cleveland's prestigious Community Partnership for Arts and Culture Creative Workforce Fellowship, as the only fellow chosen for her work in multi-media. Angela designs all of our printed materials for community outreach, manages email and social media communication and was the lead staff person on the development of the "ActionGram."

 

 

Jessica Smith-Szabo

Human Resources Generalist

[email protected]

 

Jessica has been a vital part of Ohio Citizen Action since 2014 when she first joined as a Field Canvass Director. Over the course of five years, Jessica led the first team in OCA's history to organize in all 33 state senate districts. She then went on to work as a Special Project Manager, where she coordinated a state-wide field canvass travel team before switching roles to begin training under our Finance Director. Jessica worked within our finance department for just under two years before assuming her current role as our Human Resources Generalist. 

Jessica earned her Bachelor of Arts in Organizational Leadership from Cleveland State University. Jessica is currently working towards her Masters in Human Resources Management, specializing in Organizational Leadership and Change Management. 


 

 

Michael Todd

 Field Canvas Director

[email protected]

 

 

 

Michael Todd joins OCA as Cleveland Field Canvass Director, bringing with him volunteer history with a youth leadership program and the campaigns of Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib and Bernie Sanders. Before joining OCA, Michael worked for Clean Water Action, beginning as a canvasser and working his way up to Senior Field Manager.

Michael is currently working towards obtaining his B.A. in Environmental Science and then hopes to earn his Masters in Environmental Policy and Management. While in school, Michael volunteers with United Future Leaders as a youth mentor. 

 

 

 

Tatiana Rodzos

Campaign Organizer

[email protected]

 

 

 

 

Tatiana first joined OCA in 2019 as a field canvasser, and quickly moved to become one of our best canvassers. Over the past two years, Tatiana has progressed from being out on the field, to successfully transitioning to a leading phone canvassing manager. Most recently, Tatiana has been promoted to Campaigns Organizer. 

Tatiana is a 2019 graduate of Bowling Green State University, where she double majored in French and International Studies. Tatiana was an active member of the student-led Environmental Action Group (E.A.G.), where she also acted as the Communications Director during her senior year. 

 

Kyle Marcum

Senior Utilities Organizer

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Kyle joins our staff as a Senior Utilities Organizer. Kyle comes to us with years of organizing with the Human Rights Campaign, where he  researched, drafted, and implemented advocacy plans to educate and lobby lawmakers on pro-LGBTQ policies. He's also organized on several electoral campaigns both before and after graduating with a degree in Political Science and Government from Marshall University in 2015.

Kyle will work closely with our sister organization, Ohio Consumers Power Alliance (OCPA), by assisting in the development of campaign strategies and leading OCPA’s utility efforts.