JENNIFER CASSELMAN

Jennifer is passionate about working behind the scenes using innovation and efficiency to help those around her reach their highest levels of success. As the office administrator at Triadvocates, one of the state’s premier public affairs firms, Jennifer assists clients with state and federal lobbyist and campaign law compliance, provides support for legislative engagement, and …

AUSTIN DAVIS

Austin Davis is a 22-year-old poet, activist, and homeless outreach organizer. Davis is the founder of AZ Hugs For the Houseless, Arizona Jews For Justice’s homeless outreach program. Davis is also the author of “Lotus & The Apocalypse,” a poetry novella that explores his experiences with mental health. Above all else, with his work on …

Editor’s Note

Arizona’s Unsung Heroes The Arizona Capitol Times this month is profiling 11 Unsung Heroes in the Arizona political community and state of Arizona. This special section marks the second in our 2022 series of the most influential professionals in Arizona politics. The 11 people profiled in the following pages do the grunt work of the …

VANESSA HAYDEN

Vanessa Hayden, who works at Isaacson Law Firm, moved from Southern California to Arizona to attend the Scottsdale Culinary Institute and pursue a career in the culinary arts. After she graduated from Scottsdale Culinary Institute, she worked as a pastry chef for Arizona Catering and traveled as a tour caterer for the band N’Sync on …

SHARON HOSSLER

Sharon Hossler serves as the operations director at Veridus, where she manages the firm’s human resources, event planning, information technology, accounts payable and receivable, payroll, and more, including the collaboration with the Arizona Capitol Times on The Purple Book.  Sharon personifies the firm’s dedication to its clients. She accepts challenges head-on and ensures Veridus can …

REYNA MONTOYA

Reyna Montoya is the founder and CEO of Aliento. She is a social entrepreneur, educator and dancer. Reyna is a DACA recipient and is an alumna of Arizona State University, Grand Canyon University, and Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government.   Reyna was born in Tijuana, Mexico, 15 minutes from the U.S. and Mexico border, and …

MICHELLE CIROCCO

Michelle Cirocco is chief social responsibility officer for Televerde and the executive director of Televerde Foundation. She joined Televerde in 1999 where she has held several leadership positions including chief marketing officer. Michelle was recently named one of the World-Changing Women in Conscious Business by Conscious Company magazine and Most Admired Leader by Phoenix Business …

KEN MATTA

Ken Matta is the CIO of Runbeck Election Services, Inc. He previously served as the information security officer and election security lead for the Arizona Secretary of State’s Office.  His election and IT experience began at the Secretary of State’s Office in 2002, and includes election operations, system administration, network administration, information security, logic and accuracy testing, election …

ALEXIS USTARIZ

Arizona State University safety technician Alexis Ustariz should have the word “danger” in her job title. Alexis inspects and labels 50-pound barrels filled with biohazardous materials, including personal protective equipment, test tubes, straws and other waste from several ASU Covid testing sites, according to “ASU News.” Ustariz earned her bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in …

STEVE MATT

Steve Matt is the friendly face you’ll see when you walk into the lobby of the House and he’s the voice of legislation. Steve, a Shakespearean actor who was never out of work and barely auditioned for 25 years, has been the House reader since 2016, rattling off thousands of bill numbers and short titles …