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CHIP Success Stories

The Hobby School of Public Affairs' Civic Houston Internship Program (CHIP) offers government internships to University of Houston students each fall and spring semester. Since its inception, the program has placed over 1000 interns in local political offices.  Here are just a few of the many success stories:

Melissa Arredondo: Press Secretary, Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo
Fall 2007: Commissioner Sylvia Garcia
Spring 2008: Council Member Melissa Noriega

Roel Benavides, Jr.: Committee Clerk, House Committee on Corrections
Fall 2014: Congressman Pete Olson

Stephen Bjune: Training Manager, Federal Emergency Management Agency
Spring 2007: Mayor Bill White, Office for Volunteer Initiatives

Christopher Busby: Teacher, Sam Houston Math Science Technology Center
Fall 2009: Council Member Mike Sullivan

Traci Buttram: Chief of Staff, Mayor Pro Tem Ellen Cohen
Fall 2010: State Representative Ellen Cohen
Spring 2011: State Representative Jessica Farrar

Candace Caruthers: JD Candidate, Howard University School of Law
Fall 2014: Council Member Larry Green

Yesenia Chavez: Policy Analyst, Immigrants' Rights at ALCU
Spring 2013: Council Member James Rodriguez

Matthew Conner: Deputy Regional Director, U.S. Senator John Cornyn
Fall 2012: Congressman John Culberson

Mary Davis: Casework Director, Congressman Pete Olson
Fall 2015: Council Member Michael Kubosh

Jeanette De Los Santos: Director, Community & Neighborhood Relations, Houston Habitat for Humanity
Fall 2001: Quantum Consultants

Carlos Doroteo: Attorney, Berg & Androphy
Spring 2004: State Representative Rick Noriega

Natasha Egharevba: Assistant District Attorney, Tarrant County Criminal District Attorney's Office
Fall 2008: State Senator Rodney Ellis

Russell Etherton: Manager of Community Relations, Legacy Community Health -Montrose
Fall 2009: Annise Parker for Mayor Campaign

Jon Garcia: Legislative Director, State Representative Jessica Farrar
Fall 2015: State Representative Jessica Farrar

Cassie Gianni: Foreign Service Officer, U.S. Department of State
Spring 2011: Controller Ron Green
Fall 2011: Controller Ron Green
Spring 2015: Mayor’s Office of International Trade and Development

Mariah Grayson: Research Assistant, Earl Carl Institute-Center for Government Law
Fall 2015: Chris Brown for City Controller

Shannon Harris: Operations Coordinator, University of Texas at Austin
Fall 2001: League of Women Voters

Nick Heisig: English Copy Editor, Lopez Negrete Communications
Fall 2013: State Senator Rodney Ellis

Mirel Herrera: Community Justice Action Fund, Greenway Strategy Group
Spring 2008: Rick Noriega for U.S. Senate Campaign

Carla Hulsey: Senior Community Relations Specialist, UT Health Science Center at Houston
Fall 2010: Commissioner Sylvia Garcia
Spring 2011: Council Member Ed Gonzalez

Maria Ivanez: Attorney, Rosas & Associates
Fall 2011: Barrio Dogs of Houston
Spring 2012: NALEO Educational Fund
Fall 2012: Council Member Ed Gonzalez

Jessica Iwobi: English and SPED Teacher, Hastings High School
Spring 2011: Council Member Ed Gonzalez

Estefani Jimenez: Environmental Air Permit Specialist, Texas Commission on Environment Quality
Fall 2012: State Senator Mario Gallegos

Valerie Luna-Pena: Senior Director of Constituent Services, Mayor Pro Tem Ellen Cohen
Spring 2013: Council Member Ellen Cohen

Josh Malone: Associate, Farella, Braun+Martel LLP
Spring 2010: Environment Texas

Cody Miller: Service Learning Project Manager, ELCA National Youth Gathering
Fall 2014: Council Member Ed Gonzalez

Ana Montanez: Government Relations Associate, Council on Foundations
Fall 2015: Council Member Ed Gonzalez

Alexander Obregon: Deputy City Controller, City Controller Chris Brown
Fall 2008: Council Member Ron Green

Emma Oliver: Independent Consultant, UNICEF USA
Spring 2014: State Representative Carol Alvarado

Dylan Osborne: Harris County Treasurer
Spring 2011: Council Member Sue Lovell

Julia Ossemi-Seied: Communications Director, Council Member Jerry Davis
Fall 2016: Council Member Jerry Davis
Spring 2017: Council Member Jerry Davis

Bryan Pelaez: Public Assistant Specialist, Tetra Tech EM Inc.
Fall 2015: Congressman John Culberson

Melissa Peña: Teacher, Fort Worth ISD
Fall 2011: Lone Star Strategies, LLC

Shawn Portales: External Affairs Manager, Tejas Tubular
Fall 2010: Council Member Ed Gonzalez
Spring 2011: Congressman Gene Green

Paige Powell: Director of Operations, Air Alliance Houston
Fall 2006: Council Member Peter Brown

Salatiel Rueda: Deputy Chief of Staff, Council Member Mike Laster
Spring 2015: Council Member Robert Gallegos

Robert Quarles: Staff Director, Office of Fort Bend County Commissioner, Precinct 1
Fall 2000: Council Member Mark Ellis
Fall 2001: Chris Bell for Mayor Campaign

Edith Rodriguez: Community Liaison, State Representative Hubert Vo
Fall 2015: Council Member Robert Gallegos

Jessica Ruland: Coordinator, Greater Houston Partnership
Fall 2017: Council Member Michael Kubosh

Emina Sadic: Project Coordinator, One Earth Future Foundation
Fall 2010: Mayor’s Office of Intergovernmental Relations

Paula Santamaria: Business Operations, HP
Spring 2013: Council Member Ed Gonzalez
Fall 2013: Council Member Ed Gonzalez

Eric Schroeder: Legislative Director, State Representative Mary Gonzalez
Fall 2014: State Representative Garnet Coleman

Eiman Siddiqui: Chief of Staff, State Representative Tom Oliverson
Fall 2014: State Representative Jim Murphy

Hillary Sotello: Community Development Manager, GrantWorks, Inc.
Spring 2009: Houstonians for Responsible Growth

William Souraphath: Associate EHR Application Analyst, MD Anderson Cancer Center
Spring 2014: Commissioner El Franco Lee

Katherine Summerlin: Financial Analyst, Harris County Toll Road Authority
Fall 2005: Council Member Ronald Green

Binsu Wang: Underwriting Consultant, Goodhope Group
Spring 2012: Harris County Clerk Stan Stanart, Election Division

Kelly Waterman: District Director, Congressman Brian Babin
Fall 2007: U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison
Fall 2009: Texans for Kay Bailey Hutchison Campaign

Cody Wheeler: Council Member, City of Pasadena
Fall 2010: Rick Molina for State Representative Campaign

Eric Widaski: Chief of Staff, Council Member Mike Laster
Spring 2011: Council Member Melissa Noriega

Janae Williams-Winfield: Chief of Staff, Council Member Martha Castex-Tatum
Spring 2010: State Representative Ellen Cohen

Madelyn Wilson: Project Coordinator, New Site Build, Nexius
Fall 2015: Outreach Strategists

Navid Zanjani: Founder & Partner, America Strategies
Fall 2008: Barack Obama for President Campaign, Florida
Fall 2009: Organizing for America

Are you a former CHIP intern and would like to be listed on this page?  Do you want to have your current information on this page updated?  Contact Isaiah Warner at