Maria Barsallo Lynch is the Executive Director of the Defending Digital Democracy Project (D3P). 

Barsallo Lynch brings a background in politics and an academic background at the cross-section of cybersecurity and technology to D3P’s leadership team to help grow the project’s work and impact in providing solutions and tools to keep democratic processes safe.  She believes in the importance of helping decision makers and communities gain literacy in the growing fields of cybersecurity, technology innovation, and the space in between.

Barsallo Lynch has guided D3P’s research and recommendations on cybersecurity and influence operations ahead of the 2020 Election, which include realizing guides such as D3P's Election Influence Operations Playbook, among other playbooks, resources and trainings shared nationally. She is a collaborator on numerous efforts to further recommendations on issues in cybersecurity, technology, and policy. Barsallo Lynch recently co-lead research on digital tools for COVID-19 mitigation and has previously conducted research on data privacy. She also serves as a member of Berkman Klein Center's Digital Pandemic Response Working Group and Assembly Forum.

Barsallo Lynch has rooted her work in seeking systemic change for challenging social issues by leading funding strategy and program implementation in the nonprofit and political arenas.  Her background includes serving as a Deputy Finance Director for Colorado’s U.S. Senator Michael Bennet and as Director of Development for the Knowledge is Power Program (KIPP) Colorado Schools. She was a Legislative Fellow with U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal supporting his work as Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, and Insurance. Inspired by her family’s humble roots and her experiences as a Panamanian immigrant to the United States, Barsallo Lynch is also the founder of a social enterprise called DESDE.  

Barsallo Lynch holds a B.A. from The Colorado College and serves on its Alumni Association Committee. She also holds an M.P.A. from the Harvard University John F. Kennedy School of Government. She is an alumna of the International DO School Fellowship.  



Last Updated: Oct 22, 2020, 5:56pm



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