Members of our executive team commit about 10 hours per week or more to the organization.
Max is a junior studying Philosophy and Statistics and has been passionate about EA since early 2020. He's especially interested in the philosophical justifications for EA and ethics more broadly. Apart from EA, he loves recreational sports, weight lifting, podcasts, running, board games, and Smash Ultimate. He's excited bringing the ideas of effective altruism to UW–Madison and building a campus community of altruists dedicated to doing as much good possible.
Declan is a senior studying English Linguistics, CS, History, and Japanese. He has been a member of the EA community since Summer 2021 and a leader at EA UW since Spring 2022. He grew up on a farm in rural Wisconsin with vegetarian parents and has actually never eaten meat (so no need to go through the pain of adjusting)! He cares deeply about both humans and other animals and wants to spend his life improving the happiness, physical health, and mental health of all sentient species. He also has prosopagnosia (more commonly known as "face blindness") so although he loves meeting people, he is usually unable to recognize anyone.
Eeshaan is a senior studying Computer Sciences and Philosophy. They became interested in EA in late 2020 while thinking about ways to help non-human animals beyond adopting a vegan lifestyle, joined the EA UW leadership team in its early days, and founded Animal Advocacy UW–Madison in Fall 2022. They are particularly interested in suffering-focused ethics and strategies to help make EA more diverse and inclusive of a movement. Their hobbies include casual bike riding, amateur vegan cooking, listening to jazz, drinking kombucha, and language learning (sometimes all at once).
Meera is a second-year Computer Sciences major with an interest in machine learning and AI. They love reading novels and hiking. Meera is the resident community health point-person. If you have any concerns about something that has happened in the group, you can talk to them (or someone else on leadership if you're more comfortable with that). They are committed to helping make EA a welcoming and accessible space for people who identify as queer or disabled.
Akhil is a Computer Sciences graduate student and Teaching Assistant at UW–Madison with a Bachelor's in Computer Science from Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati and over four years of professional experience as a software engineer developing network management applications. He has been actively involved with the effective altruism community for over 2 years now through the facilitation of virtual programs. He is especially interested in reducing existential risks from Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) and Engineered Pandemics.
James is a fourth-year majoring in Biochemistry, Neurobiology, and Economics. He's particularly interested in mental health as an EA cause area as well as longtermist and transhumanist research, specifically involving neural mechanisms and consciousness. Outside EA, he researches neurodegenerative diseases and works as an EMT, and his hobbies include volleyball, ultimate frisbee, and wilderness camping.
Harmon is a third-year studying Computer Science and Economics with a focus in Bioinformatics. His interests include biosecurity and entrepreneurship, and he’s done extensive research in machine learning.
Kenneth is a fourth-year Industrial Engineering and Psychology Student. His primary aim in life is reducing the suffering of all beings, whether or not they happen to be human. He is particularly interested in the psychological factors that influence the development of the moral circle. He also looks to cultivate compassion, for the self and for others, because he believes that boundless compassion will lead to the greatest good being done. His hobbies include reading, making memes, and tennis.
Alumni and Affiliates
Michel co-founded EA UW in Fall 2020 after hearing a podcast episode, as one does. Together with Lenni, his twin, and the help of early organizers he shaped it to be the group it is today — which is hopefully still a group of standout people committed to leaving the world better than they entered it. As of this writing, he is finishing up his degrees in Neurobiology and Psychology remotely in Berkeley, where he’s working full time on improving EA infrastructure and skilling up in grant-making and AI alignment. But, if you ask him what he’s doing now, it will almost certainly be something new (rumor has it). He’s happy to chat with all EA UW members!
Lenni co-founded EA UW–Madison together with his brother in 2020 when he was a sophomore. Together, with a wonderful team of dedicated people, he helped create a community of people in Madison inspired to do good in the world. Lenni graduated from UW–Madison in 2022 with a B.S. in Physics and Political Science. He now works on biosecurity issues as a research assistant in Kevin Esvelt’s lab at MIT.
Emma is currently the Director of Chapter Management at One for the World; a nonprofit focused on accessible, effective giving via undergraduate and graduate student chapters. Before joining One for the World, she spent four years running corporate campaigns and organizing with a distributed network of volunteers at Mercy For Animals, a global farmed animal protection nonprofit. She has been involved with the effective altruism movement since 2016 by organizing EA spaces and EAGxMadison, attending EA Global conferences, and working with affiliated animal advocacy organizations and groups. She welcomes chats with EA UW members or in person in Madison.
Aaron Yarmel (PhD, MSc, MA) is the Associate Director of the Center for Ethics and Human Values at The Ohio State University. His research focuses on two-level utilitarianism, social change, and philosophy for children. Before moving to Ohio, he was the founding director of Madison Public Philosophy, a Philosophy for Children organization. He has been involved in the Effective Altruism movement since 2015 through his academic research, as a guest speaker and workshop presenter, and as an EAGx conference organizer.