FBI Whistleblower, Whistleblower Network News Reporter, and Host of the Whistleblower of the Week Podcast
Jane Turner was a highly decorated, 25-year veteran Special Agent with the FBI. She served in the most difficult investigatory positions and was the first woman named as the head of an FBI resident agency.
She led the FBI’s highly successful programs combating crimes against women and child sex crime victims on North Dakota Indian Reservations. In retaliation for exposing FBI failures within its child crime program, Turner was removed from senior resident agent position. Turner successfully fought her removal and won a historic victory for all FBI whistleblowers before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit. She challenged her retaliation in federal court, and won a unanimous jury verdict in her favor, obtaining the largest compensatory damage award permitted under the law for federal employees.
Jane also exposed criminal theft of property at the 9/11 crime scene by a handful of FBI agents. She was harshly retaliated against for reporting these violations to the Department of Justice, Inspector General. After a ten-year battle, she prevailed, becoming only one of a small handful of FBI agents to win her cases under the FBI Whistleblower Protection Act.
Alfred Brownell is an internationally recognized environmental rights activist and lawyer from Liberia. Brownell has advocated for more than two decades to protect the environment and human rights in West Africa and to empower Liberians and West Africans victimized by resource exploitation. He co-founded and headed the public interest law nongovernmental environmental rights organization Green Advocates International. With Green Advocates, Brownell pioneered a framework for environmental law within Liberia’s legal system. His efforts have led to significant successes, including the temporary protection of six million acres of forest from development by palm oil companies.
Stephen M. Kohn is one of the nation’s leading whistleblower attorneys. A founding director of the National Whistleblower Center, he is the author of eight books on whistleblower law, including The New Whistleblower’s Handbook: A Step-by-Step Guide to Doing What’s Right and Protecting Yourself. He is a practicing whistleblower attorney and serves pro bono as the Chairman of the Board of the National Whistleblower Center. Stephen is a partner in the whistleblower law firm Kohn, Kohn & Colapinto. His primary litigation focus includes representing international whistleblowers under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, tax fraud whistleblowers, qui tam reward laws, the False Claims Act, SEC whistleblowers and IRS whistleblowers. In 2012, the firm obtained the largest qui tam whistleblower reward given to a single individual in history ($104 million to UBS whistleblower Bradley Birkenfeld) and he represents Danske Bank Whistleblower Howard Wilkinson.
Allison Gill (aka, “AG”) is an award-winning political podcast journalist, She is known to many as a whistleblower, Ph.D., U.S. Navy veteran, standup comedian, writer, musician, and one of the hottest voices in today’s liberal political media. She also is the founder and CEO of MSW Media, a podcast network. Gill serves up social justice and political news, speaking what she believes is the truth, no matter the odds. Her original podcast, Mueller, She Wrote, won her a Webby Award.
Matthew Beddingfield is a Senior Associate in Zerbe, Miller, Fingeret, Frank & Jadav LP’s Washington, D.C. office who specializes in representing whistleblowers from their initial filing through any necessary appeals process. He has experience representing clients before several government entities, including the Internal Revenue Service and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, as well as the U.S. Tax Court.
David Lieberman is an experienced litigator of complex fraud claims, with a focus on those involving the False Claims Act. A former environmental crime prosecutor with the Massachusetts Attorney General’s office, Mr. Lieberman has represented whistleblowers and governments in major false claims act cases. Previously, Mr. Lieberman served as a judicial clerk to the Honorable Bruce M. Selya of the First Circuit Court of Appeals. Before joining Whistleblower Law Collaborative, Mr. Lieberman practiced law at Ropes & Gray and Day & Pitney in Boston.
Kayla is the 2021-2022 Public Interest Law Fellow at Kohn, Kohn & Colapinto, where she provides direct representation to whistleblowers and contributes to the firm’s policy projects. Kayla graduated from Georgetown University Law Center in 2020 and clerked for the District of Columbia Superior Court prior to joining the firm. While in law school, Kayla wrote a brief defending the rights of married women in Botswana for the International Women’s Human Rights Clinic, and interned with the Department of Justice Human Rights and Special Prosecutions Section.
Jóhannes Stefánsson is the former Director of Operations in Namibia for Icelandic fishing company Samherji. He worked with anti-corruption authorities and the media to expose a fishing rights bribery scheme in Namibia. Samherji’s CEO was investigated for allegedly approving bribes, estimated at $10 million, to Namibian politicians and companies to illegally obtain offshore fishing rights. In November 2019, several of Namibia’s justice and fisheries ministers resigned and were arrested on corruption charges, along with other prominent Namibian figures. As of February 2021, multiple investigations were underway in several countries with new criminal charges being brought.
Shanna Devine serves as the inaugural Director of the Office of the Whistleblower Ombuds. In that capacity, she is responsible for advising the House community on best practices for working with whistleblowers from the public and private sectors.
Executive Director of NWC
Siri Nelson is the Executive Director of the National Whistleblower Center. Nelson served as an Associate Attorney and Policy Counsel at Kohn, Kohn and Colapinto, the nation’s leading whistleblower law firm, where she worked closely with anonymous whistleblowers, legislators, and regulators. Nelson was the recipient of the highly prestigious and competitive Estelle S. Kohn Memorial Fellowship awarded by Northeastern University School of Law and was elected to be the Commencement Speaker for her Class at Northeastern University School. She graduated summa cum laude from the College of New Rochelle, School of New Resources, with a B.A. in Liberal Arts focused on the Social Sciences. Nelson has been published in Columbia’s Blue Sky Blog and The National Law Review. She also serves as an Editor & Legislative Correspondent at Whistleblower Network News.
Rebekah Jones’ unlikely notoriety as a coronavirus whistleblower stemmed from her ground-breaking work at the Florida Department of Health, where she led data and surveillance during the pandemic. Praised by the White House for her innovation and creativity in data communication, visualization and management, Jones fought for transparency and accessibility of COVID-19 data across the country. Her work became the standard for states nation-wide. In May 2020, when asked to manipulate data in support of a premature plan to reopen the state, Jones refused, was fired, defamed and harassed by her own government. After leaving DOH, Jones built her own system to monitor the pandemic and launched a nationwide initiative to track cases in schools. In September 2020, Jones was named one of Fortune Magazine’s 40 under 40 and one of Medium’s 50 experts to trust during a pandemic. In December, her home was raided with guns drawn on her family by state police on the orders of Governor Ron DeSantis. Yet, she persisted, and was even named Forbes’ 2020 Tech Person of the Year – the first such award ever given by the publication. Now a legally-protected whistleblower, Jones is returning to Florida to run for Congress.
John Whitty serves as the Deputy Director of Operations of the House Office of the Whistleblower Ombuds. There, he works with the Director to assist House offices in establishing best practices for working with whistleblowers, as well as managing the office’s financial and administrative responsibilities.
A social worker by background, Jacqueline Garrick entered the policy and program management realm upon her discharge from the US Army where she had specialized in post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) recovery and transition services.
Garrick has used her clinical experiences to improve quality of life programs and benefits for veterans, their families and employees. She has served in executive positions at the American Legion and the Departments of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Defense (DoD) and with Congress.
Garrick is a recognized public servant advocate with awards from several distinguished organizations. She is known for her work on organizational and professional development, strategic planning, programming and budgeting, legislation, oversight and investigations, personnel matters, and resilience and prevention approaches in the workplace. When Garrick left government, she founded Whistleblowers of America to provide peer support to those suffering the impacts of retaliation and advocate for mediation and continuous process improvement.
She developed the Whistleblower Retaliation Checklist to identify retaliation and its psychosocial impacts on employees in relation to the traumatic stressor of identity disruption. Garrick has coined the term Workplace Traumatic Stress and penned a Whistleblower Peer Mentor Code of Ethics and Workplace Promise campaign available on the WoA website.
Sara Thompson is a Peace Corps whistleblower who volunteered in Burkina Faso. She came out of her service with medical complications due to mefloquine, a controversial anti-malaria medicine administered by the Corps. Almost a decade later, Thompson still experiences severe side effects from mefloquine toxicity, and has been denied redress by the Corps and the courts. After finishing her service, Thompson became an advocate for whistleblower protections on Capitol Hill, fighting for volunteers who faced hardships during their service and found no support from the Corps upon returning home.
Dr. Frederic Whitehurst
Dr. Frederic Whitehurst is a former FBI scientist who “blew the whistle” on misconduct within the FBI crime lab, resulting in extensive reforms being made.
He was America’s first successful FBI whistleblower. His case exposed forensic fraud in the FBI crime lab and subjected it to outside oversight for the first time. In 1997, Kohn, Kohn & Colapinto won a landmark victory and was responsible for a historic Presidential Executive Order ensuring whistleblower protection rights for FBI Agents who expose misconduct. They also obtained an extraordinary settlement of $1,166,000 plus $258,580 in attorney’s fees. Dr. Whitehurst established the Forensic Justice Project at the National Whistleblowers Center and initiated Freedom of Information Act requests that led to a NWC/Washington Post investigation of the FBI Crime Lab that forced the FBI to review 20,000 hair analysis cases. The investigation to date has resulted in several exonerations, reversals of convictions, and one stayed execution.
Andrew Hartnett is the Deputy Administrator for Securities in the Iowa Insurance Division and President-elect of the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA). He brings to these roles experience as a state securities regulator in two jurisdictions, as an Assistant Attorney General, and several years in private practice representing investment advisers and broker-dealers.
John Cochran was appointed Commissioner of the Indiana Securities Division in 2021. The Indiana Securities Division is responsible for regulating the securities industry, loan brokers, collection agencies, franchises, and continuing care retirement communities. Prior to his appointment, he served as Parliamentarian to the Indiana House of Representatives. Mr. Cochran has professional experience in both the public and private sectors. Mr. Cochran is a graduate of George Mason University School of Law in Arlington, Virginia.
Francswai Grayson currently serves as the Director of Communication and Outreach for the Division of Securities at the Utah Department of Commerce. In her role, she oversees the Division’s written correspondences and public presentations, as well as the management of the Division’s investor education program. She previously served within the Division of Securities as a Securities Compliance Examiner and the Securities Enforcement Legal Analyst, where she was responsible for drafting the Division’s Orders to Show Cause and reviewing public records access requests. Mrs. Grayson earned bachelor’s degrees (B.S.) in Finance and Political Science, as well as a master’s in Business Administration (M.B.A.) and Juris Doctorate (J.D.) degree from the University of North Carolina Law School.
Emily Kisicki is the Director of Policy for the Vermont Department of Financial Regulation, which regulates the banking, securities, insurance, and captive insurance industries in the state. Previously, she served as the Director of Examinations and Enforcement for the Securities Division within the Department. In that role, she provided oversight of the investment adviser registration, examination, investigation, and enforcement functions of the Division. Ms. Kisicki is a member of the Enforcement Publications, State Legislation, and Investment Adviser Regulatory Policy project groups of the North American Securities Administrators Association, Inc. (NASAA). Ms. Kisicki graduated from Gettysburg College with a B.A. in Environmental Studies. She earned her Juris Doctor from Vermont Law School, and an LL.M. from the University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law.
Bio coming soon!
Bio coming soon!