Meet our Staff

Rachel Flum, J.D.

RACHEL FLUM, J.D

Executive Director


Rachel has served as the executive director of the Economic Progress Institute since September 2015. Prior to taking over as executive director, she was a senior policy analyst with the Institute for 10 years. Rachel is responsible, along with the Board, for the strategic and fund development of the organization, as well as the administration and management of the staff. Rachel serves on the Permanent Legislative Commission on Child Care, the Rhode Island Early Learning Council and the Child Support Guidelines Review Committee. Rachel has a Bachelor of Arts from Wellesley College and a Juris Doctorate from Georgetown University Law Center.


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Linda Katz J.D.

LINDA KATZ, J.D.

Co-Founder and Policy Director


Linda is the Policy Director and, along with Nancy Gewirtz, co-founded The Institute. Linda is responsible for legislative and policy analysis and advocacy on a range of public benefits and programs, including: welfare, health care, child care, and employment and training.

Linda is chair of the statewide RI Works Advisory Committee, and a member of the HealthSource RI Advisory Board. Before joining The Economic Progress Institute full-time in 2001, Linda worked for the RI Health Center Association, RI Disability Law Center and RI Legal Services. Linda received her Juris Doctorate from Boston College and undergraduate degree from the University of Rochester.


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Douglas Hall Director od Economic and Fiscal Policy

Douglas Hall, Ph.D.

Director of Economic and Fiscal Policy


Doug joined the Economic Progress Institute in October 2015, returning to state-based work after spending the last five years at the Economic Policy Institute serving as the Director of the Economic Analysis and Research Network (EARN), a network of state and local partners committed to improving the well-being of working families. Under Doug’s leadership the Economic Progress Institute’s tax and budget work ensures that our state’s budget is fair and adequately funds programs that help Rhode Island families make ends meet. Doug has studied poverty and labor markets extensively, and has expertise in areas including: retirement security, minimum wage, economic development, and paid sick days. Doug holds a Ph.D from Queen’s University, a Master’s degree from McMaster University, and an undergraduate degree from York University.



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Juan Espinoza, Communications and Outreach

JUAN ESPINOZA, M.S.

Communications and Outreach Associate


Juan joined the Institute in 2015 to assist with communications and outreach on behalf of the Institute. Prior to joining the Institute, Juan was a Field Organizer and Deputy Finance Director for the Elorza campaign, working with community leaders throughout the city of Providence to create a diverse coalition to elect now Mayor Jorge Elorza. Previously, Juan worked as Finance Director for Nellie Gorbea’s campaign for Secretary of State.

Juan currently serves as policy chair for the Young Democrats of Rhode Island and is also on the Board of the Childhood Lead Action Project. Juan has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University of Florida and a Master of Science degree from Florida State University.


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