At The Greenlining Institute, we don’t just talk about diversity, we practice it every day. Our talented staff and Academy participants come from a wide variety of backgrounds and bring a diverse range of life experiences to the work of advancing justice and equity for all of America’s communities.

Debra Gore-Mann | President & CEO
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Debra Gore-Mann finds gratitude in developing long term relationships, dynamic teams and shared accomplishments. As the middle child of a biracial, military, first generation immigrant family, Debra embraces the beauty and strength that lies in her differentness.

Debra joins the Greenlining team from a background of in-depth strategic and business development expertise. With an engineering degree and an M.B.A. from Stanford (where she was the only African American woman in a class of 400 graduate students), her work has spanned across the private, public and political sectors in uplifting low opportunity communities with funding, team building and financial and people resources. Most recently, she led the San Francisco Conservation Corps, America’s first urban municipal youth corps.

Preeti Vissa Kristipati | Senior Advisor to the President
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Preeti Vissa Kristipati is passionate about advancing an equity agenda for underserved communities and supporting the strategic growth of organizations to meet community needs.  She is a social worker at heart with over 10 years of experience in the nonprofit sector.

In her previous role as Chief Operating Officer of The Greenlining Institute, she built organizational systems and processes to support sustainable growth. In this role, she was responsible for strengthening internal teams and driving organizational strategic change. She had a wide-ranging set of responsibilities, including: maintaining financial oversight, organizational development, and ensuring communication, collaboration and support of cross-functional teams.  She also created a leadership development plan (incorporating individualized leadership goals and management-wide training sessions), and an onboarding program for both staff and members of the Board of Directors.

La Shonda Moore | Assistant to the President
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As the Assistant to the President of The Greenlining Institute, La Shonda provides direct 1:1 administrative support including primary management of the President’s calendar. She also serves as liaison to the Board of Directors, while overseeing the management of a variety of special projects for the President.

La Shonda has over a decade of experience supporting executives across industries. Among others, she has been executive assistant to four different vice presidents at Charles River Associates, an economic consulting firm and performed similar duties at RREEF, a former subsidiary of Deutsche Bank, and at Current TV, before it was taken over by Al Jazeera America.

Rosa Martinez | Operations Director
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Rosa María Martinez is The Greenlining Institute’s Operations Director, overseeing the management of our office and building. Previously, she worked with the Health Equity Team managing Greenlining’s Diversity in the Health Workforce initiative, looking at current representation of people of color at all levels within the health field. She also worked on ensuring that information about the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was reaching limited-English communities throughout California, conducting presentations across the state. Rosa María co-authored an issue brief designed to help ethnic small businesses understand key elements of the ACA affecting them.

Ana Oseguera | Operations Manager
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As Operations Manager at The Greenlining Institute, Ana assists the Operations Director with overseeing the management of the office and building. Previously, she worked at Mayer’s Laboratories, Inc. and Briones International, LLC as an Administrative Assistant and Bookkeeper.

Since 2010, Ana has volunteered at SEIU Local 1877, advocating for human rights. Ana supports the union by translating, participating in protests and helping write letters of support for workers. Additionally, Ana has volunteered with various organizations that support foreign students learning English and achieve a higher education.

Irma Hurtado | Operations Coordinator
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As the Operations Coordinator at The Greenlining Institute, Irma is responsible for overseeing the organization’s accounts payable and accounts receivable as well as offering support to the Development team on grant and data processing. Previously, Irma worked at Briones International, LLC as a bookkeeper, where she provided bookkeeping services to various nonprofit organizations in the Bay Area.

While volunteering at Mujeres Unidas y Activas, Irma became passionate for human rights and social justice as well as the work of the nonprofit sector. This is what drew Irma to The Greenlining Institute.

Ashley Myrriah | Digital Strategy Manager
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Ashley Myrriah works to build up The Greenlining Institute’s robust digital communications and social media operation. Ashley got her start in advocacy fundraising on behalf of the Democratic National Committee while at Grassroots Campaigns during the 2008 general election and continued grow her campaign skill sets at GMMB. Prior to joining the Greenlining team in December 2018, Ashley worked in public affairs and strategic communications at several major political organizations in Washington state and D.C.

Sandra Ruiz | Human Resources Director
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Sandra has a deep commitment to serving mission-driven organizations and joined The Greenlining Institute to help foster a workplace culture where values are reflected in how we stretch and support our staff and how we as leaders show up each day. As a recent addition to the Greenlining team, she hopes to bring about systems and tools that will help the organization become even more effective.  She is a graduate of UC Berkeley and San Francisco State University, academically trained in the field of Industrial/Organizational Psychology, and was indelibly transformed by her experiences working for social justice organizations La Clinica de La Raza, Center for Elders Independence, Juma Ventures, and Proyecto Contra SIDA Por Vida. As a queer Mexican immigrant raised in a working-class community in South Central L.A., she feels a great sense of responsibility to lend her expertise and lived experiences to uplift her community and can think of no better way to do so that by supporting this amazing organization.

Adam Briones | Economic Equity Director
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Adam Briones leads Greenlining’s banking, housing and economic development work. Prior to joining Greenlining, Adam was most recently a Vice President of Real Estate Development at the Genesis Companies in New York, one of the city’s most active African American-owned affordable housing developers. While there, Adam led the acquisition, financing, rehabilitation, and management of 52 affordable rental and homeownership buildings.

Mercedes Gibson | Economic Equity Strategist
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Mercedes Gibson is an Economic Equity Strategist at the Greenlining Institute, where she partners with the Business Team inside City of Oakland’s Economic & Workforce Development Department to better support small businesses of color, as outlined in Oakland’s 2018 -2020 Economic Development Strategy. As an East Oakland native, Mercedes is familiar with barriers to wealth for black and brown families living in parts of Oakland that have been historically underdeveloped, ignored and redlined. Since 14, she has advocated for the needs of communities often not invited to sit at the table: poor folks, people of color, queer people and women. She has also worked at various nonprofits that serve these communities: Hack the Hood, LYRIC and Young Women United For Oakland. As a San Francisco State University alum and a certified life coach in positive psychology her passions are communication, strategy and performing on stage. In her downtime she tries to be in a lake or river as much as possible, stargaze around a fire, and read graphic novels.
Rawan Elhalaby | Senior Economic Equity Program Manager
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Rawan Elhalaby is the Senior Economic Equity Program Manager at the Greenlining Institute where she oversees bank accountability efforts using the Community Reinvestment Act. As the daughter of working class refugees, Rawan is all too familiar with the obstacles to achieving self-sufficiency in the United States for low-income and immigrant families. As such, she has spent her career addressing these obstacles at Greenlining and one-on-one with recently arrived refugees from Iraq, Somalia, Syria, and Afghanistan (among others) to San Diego at the International Rescue Committee. She has also worked as a policy consultant to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the County of San Diego, the Western Regional Advocacy Project, and the Dellums Institute for Social Justice. Rawan holds a degree in Political Science from San Diego State University and a Master of Public Policy from UC Berkeley’s Goldman School of Public Policy.

Amy Biestek | Development Manager
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Amy joined the Greenlining team as Development Manager in February 2019 and is excited to bring to this role her passion and experience addressing inequities within our society and eliminating barriers to access through collaborative engagement across the philanthropic sector. Amy moved to California from the Washington, D.C. area, where she served as Regional Associate for the No Kid Hungry campaign. In this role she worked to create public-private partnerships with state, federal, nonprofit and private resources to increase awareness of and access to federally-reimbursed nutrition programs across the state of Virginia. Prior to this, Amy was with the Bainum Family Foundation, helping to build a collective policy agenda to ensure the coordination of systems (early learning, health, child welfare, and family support) serving D.C.’s infants and toddlers, and their families. She also managed after school and summer enrichment programming at Title I schools in Maryland, advocating for greater equity and access in education.

Jose Santacruz | Development Coordinator
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Jose Santacruz joined the Greenlining team in October 2019 and is committed to the abolition of all systems of oppression that create barriers to overall success for Black and Brown communities. Born and raised in East Oakland, Jose has witnessed and experienced the ramifications of redlining, gentrification, and racist policies. Prior to his role as Development Coordinator, Jose worked at Centro Legal de la Raza providing direct legal services to Immigrants in the Fruitvale area, serving as a translator for Spanish speakers, organizing and updating the Immigrants’ Rights team databases, and training new staff.

Sonrisa Cooper | Community Development Program Manager
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Sonrisa Cooper is a city planner and affordable housing advocate who leads Greenlining’s community development strategy and housing policy. She is passionate about equitable policies and strategies that protect low-income communities of color from displacement. Sonrisa got her start in housing as an intern at the Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Development Corporation in Boston, where she worked on affordable real estate development and organized tenants around energy issues. She also has experience as a program evaluation consultant for utility energy efficiency programs. Sonrisa is a recent graduate of Greenlining’s Leadership Academy, and holds a master’s in City Planning from UC Berkeley and a B.A. in Environmental Studies from Wellesley College.

Carmelita Miller | Energy Equity Legal Counsel
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Carmelita Miller was born in the Philippines and grew up in South San Francisco, California.  She graduated from Sacramento State University where she became a Ronald E. McNair Scholar and earned a B.A. in History with a minor in Greek studies.  After a graduating from UC Hastings College of the Law, she became a Greenlining Legal Fellow in 2013-14, focusing on telecommunications policy.

Paul Goodman | Technology Equity Director
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Paul Goodman directs Greenlining’s work in technology policy.  His work is grounded in the belief that all technology policy has racial equity impacts. Paul advocates for affordable and reliable telephone and high-speed broadband service for communities of color, including critical consumer protections like data privacy and net neutrality. His most recent work involves fighting algorithmic bias, ensuring that computerized decision-making does not have disparate effects on communities of color. While at Greenlining, Paul has successfully opposed the highly anti-consumer AT&T/T-Mobile and Comcast/Time Warner Cable mergers; helped obtain a $33 million settlement from Comcast for privacy violations, and advised the Federal Trade Commission and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on the use of big data to create alternatives to traditional credit scores.

Vinhcent Le | Technology Equity Legal Counsel
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Vinhcent Le is a Technology Equity attorney at the Greenlining Institute, where he develops Greenlining’s strategy to protect consumer privacy, prevent algorithmic bias in economic opportunity and to close the digital divide. As an attorney practicing before the California Public Utilities Commission, Vinhcent helped secure multi-million dollar commitments to increase broadband access in California, modernization of the Lifeline program and the development of a program providing laptops to low-income students across the state.

Alvaro S. Sanchez | Environmental Equity Director
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Alvaro S. Sanchez is an urban planner with extensive experience crafting, implementing, and evaluating strategies that leverage private and public investments to deliver community benefits to impacted communities. Alvaro leads our work on SB 535 (de León) which directs at least one quarter of California’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund to disadvantaged communities. He also leads our neighborhood-scale sustainability initiative, a comprehensive and scalable approach to greenhouse gas reduction that leverages private and public investment while improving underserved communities throughout California.

Leslie Aguayo | Environmental Equity Program Manager
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Leslie Aguayo is an urban planner and advocate with experience in poverty alleviation, asset building, affordable housing, equitable transportation and community outreach strategies using both quantitative, qualitative and ethnographic methodology in an effort to increase upward mobility in urban, suburban and rural spaces. As Environmental Equity Program Manager Leslie works to further equitable electric vehicle policy and investments. She leads Greenlining’s transportation equity work, advocating to increase racial equity in transportation planning and investments, implementing the Charge Ahead California Initiative–a law that works to make electric vehicles accessible to low- and moderate-income Californians — and advocating for equitable EV charging infrastructure investments at the California Public Utilities Commission, the California Energy Commission, and within the Volkswagen Diesel Settlement.

Román Partida-López | Environmental Equity Legal Counsel
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As Legal Counsel with the Environmental Equity team, Román works to ensure that lower-income communities of color have a seat at the table in order to drive climate investments to help improve air quality and economic opportunities within their communities. He believes that communities and their members must be prioritized, engaged and heard. Román grew up near San Diego in National City, two blocks away from the freeway and across the street from a car body shop that regularly violated city codes by sanding, chroming and painting vehicles out in the open. His exposure to these toxic chemicals and pollution inspired him to work on addressing environmental concerns in his community.

Emi Wang | Environmental Equity Senior Policy Manager
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Emi is dedicated to supporting communities of color to access the resources they need to lead their own transformations. Our neighborhoods have been shaped by racist and exclusionary public policies, and Emi is committed to leveraging policy to bring about transformative change, grounded in social and racial justice, for our communities. At Greenlining, Emi leads the Environmental Equity team’s capacity-building and locally-based work, helping to build the capacity of communities of color to access state-level resources to fight the impacts of pollution and climate change. She also co-leads our advocacy in Sacramento around policies to reduce poverty and pollution. Prior to joining Greenlining, Emi supported grassroots community improvement initiatives in communities of color and low-income neighborhoods across New York City.

Sona Mohnot | Environmental Equity Senior Program Manager/Policy Analyst
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Sona comes to us from New Orleans, and recently moved to the Bay Area to work on environmental equity issues. She became interested in environmental equity after witnessing the disproportionate environmental burdens that communities of color face in New Orleans, especially after Hurricane Katrina and the B.P. oil spill. Sona interned at several environmental nonprofits throughout law school and realized that she wanted to pursue a career in public interest environmental law. As Environmental Equity Manager, she looks forward to advocating for environmental equity and learning how to effectively empower communities of color.

Hana Creger | Environmental Equity Program Manager
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As Environmental Equity Program Manager, Hana contributes to the development and implementation of policies leading to clean transportation and mobility investments in California that result in positive health, environmental, and economic outcomes. Her work is focused on the intersection of transportation, climate change, and economic opportunities for low-income communities of color. Prior to Greenlining, Hana implemented innovative campaigns for Alameda County’s Clean Commute Program, to promote long-term sustainable behavior changes. Hana has also worked as a community organizer, advocating for climate change action and public transit policies in San Diego.

Kelsey Lyles | Health Equity Program Manager
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As Health Equity Program Manager, Kelsey Lyles leads the Health Equity team’s workforce equity and inclusion advocacy efforts. Growing up in Chicago, she felt a strong commitment to social justice at a young age.

Kelsey has extensive experience in public policy development, cross-sector collaboration, public health program design, and stakeholder engagement strategies. Prior to Greenlining, Kelsey was an Equity Specialist at the California Strategic Growth Council and managed a racial justice capacity building program for California state employees, with participation from 19 departments and agencies. Kelsey also served as a member of the California Health in All Policies staff team for five years, where she led multi-sector state government work groups, developed equity-focused work plans, provided health equity trainings, and promoted a culture shift towards equity and inclusion in state government.  Kelsey received her bachelor’s degree in Sociology and Community Development from Howard University.

Anthony Galace | Health Equity Director
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Anthony’s passion for advocacy lies at the nexus of public policy, health equity, and racial justice. As the child of Filipino immigrants, his desire to advocate for underserved communities was shaped by the struggles his extended family faced while coming to the United States. Anthony leads Greenlining’s health advocacy to promote access to health care and health workforce opportunities for historically underserved populations, such as young people of color, immigrants, and the re-entry community. Additionally, Anthony advances Greenlining’s advocacy to ensure health employers across California, such as hospitals and health plans, address racial and ethnic health disparities by increasing investments in upstream, preventive health resources for communities of color. Anthony has authored a number of reports highlighting barriers to employment for marginalized groups, such as young men and women of color, and offering policy solutions to improve racial and health equity.

Patrick Brown | Leadership Academy Director
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Patrick Brown joined Greenlining’s team in 2012 as the Manager of the Leadership Academy. Born and raised on the south side of Chicago, he comes from a lineage of community and labor organizers. While completing his B.A. at DePaul University in Political Science with a minor in Environmental Science, he served as training coordinator for DePaul’s Labor Education Program.

Chagan Sanathu | Casa Joaquin House Manager
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Chagan Sanathu has a long history of engagement with the youth leadership programs — first as a 2010 Young People For (YP4) Fellow and later as a Center for Progressive Leadership Fellow. For 3 years, Chagan worked at the Young People For offices in Washington, DC, where she worked with the 12-person alumni board to help support the YP4 program. Chagan graduated in 2012 from Goshen College with a degree in business and public relations. During her time as an undergraduate, Chagan interned at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities where she researched the effects of child tax credit and earned income tax credit of low-income communities, with an emphasis on women who survived domestic violence.

Jamina Ovbude | Leadership Academy Manager
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Jamina Ovbude is an educator whose strengths sit at the intersection of curriculum-building, multimedia and materials design, logistics management and customer service. She honed her teaching and curriculum-building skills during the four years she spent working as an English instructor with the Japan Exchange and Teaching Programme. There, she built curriculum that focused on teaching English as a second language through a cultural competency and personal empowerment lens, and also began to develop her passion for bridging knowledge gaps by uplifting learners to engage with their fullest selves.

Braelan Murray | Communications Director
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Braelan Murray, a Bay Area native, is a graduate of the University of California at Santa Cruz, where he received his B.F.A. in Film and Video Production. An award-winning filmmaker with over a decade of experience using media as a tool for advancing social change, his portfolio includes work for local unions, progressive nonprofits and cutting-edge media design firms —notably as editor and videographer on Annie Leonard’s world-renowned animated short, The Story of Stuff. As Communications Director at The Greenlining Institute, Braelan has expanded and transformed Greenlining’s use of all forms of media to tell the stories of the issues and communities we advocate for, greatly expanding the organization’s presence in all forms of new media.

Bruce Mirken | Media Relations Director
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Bruce Mirken brings two decades of journalism and communications experience as well as a long history of activism to his position as Media Relations Director. An award-winning writer who serves as Greenlining’s resident editor and all-purpose wordsmith, Bruce’s work has appeared in wide range of publications, including the San Francisco Chronicle, Men’s Health, and The Advocate. From 2001 through 2009, he served as Director of Communications for the Marijuana Policy Project. In that capacity, he appeared frequently on radio and television, including ABC World News, Anderson Cooper 360, and The Rachel Maddow Show, and was quoted in newspapers and magazines worldwide. His activist career began in the LGBT community (starting just out of college with the campaign against Proposition 6, which would have fired gay or lesbian schoolteachers in California) and quickly branched out to a wide array of social justice issues.

Jane Duong | Development Director
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Jane Duong is the Development Director at The Greenlining Institute, where she leads a team responsible for engaging foundations, corporations, individuals and other supporters to raise resources for the organization and its mission. Jane brings 15 years of experience working with communities of color to advance economic opportunity. Previously, she worked at the National Coalition for Asian Pacific American Community Development (CAPACD), a social justice organization improving the lives of low-income Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders across the country through a coalition of grassroots organizations. She played many roles, including Director of Programs and Advocacy, where she developed the first national network of AAPI-serving housing counseling agencies in the country. She also supported the growth of asset-building and financial capability programs in the AAPI community and contributed to groundbreaking research on how AAPI communities access financial services and products. Most recently, she served as the Director of Development and Strategic Partnerships, leading efforts to centralize fundraising efforts and grow the organization’s influence.

Mariah Gonzalez | Events Senior Manager
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Mariah coordinates Greenlining’s Annual Economic Summit, Academy Graduation and various events throughout the year. Prior to joining the Greenlining team, she helped to start-up Insight Garden Program, a nonprofit that builds gardens and offers job training in prisons across California. After receiving a degree in Food Systems, Ethnic Studies and Political Economy from UC Berkeley, her love of traditional foods and non-profit life led her to La Cocina, a food business incubator in San Francisco. It was there that she fell in love with the adrenaline rollercoaster that is event management — helping pull off the San Francisco Street Food Festival, an event that attracts 60,000 attendees to highlight La Cocina’s women-of-color-owned businesses. Mariah is committed to work that helps provide good jobs, meaningful work and economic opportunity to low-income communities.

Parwana Ayub | Environmental Equity Fellow
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Parwana’s passion for environmental justice is motivated by her personal history. Growing up in underserved communities in the Bay Area and abroad, Parwana understands that when it comes to addressing environmental issues equitably and inclusively, we must acknowledge their race and class dimensions. As a policy fellow, Parwana is looking forward to serving her Bay Area communities while learning about the policy landscape.

De’Zhon Grace | Economic Equity Fellow
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De’Zhon Grace, 2019 Economic Equity Fellow, comes from Oakland, California. He graduated from the University of California, Berkeley as a first-generation college student, with a major in Sociology & minor in African American Studies.

Growing up in a single-parent household, he witnessed the persistent challenges Black mothers face when raising a family in today’s America.This experience developed in him a passion for love in all forms (mentally, physically, spiritually), problem-solving, and a desire to strengthen the Black household. He believes that Black and Brown communities have a shared struggle that encompasses both economics and spirituality. Furthermore, he perceives this struggle to have persistently been the greatest obstacle in mastering self-sufficiency, prosperity, and love of self. De’Zhon has dedicated his life to searching for a solution to this struggle, which would allow for a collective shift of focus away from basic survival towards a household that thrives.

Christian Beauvior | Health Equity Fellow
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Christian Beauvoir is a public health advocate from Southern California and Greenlining’s 2019-2020 Health Equity Fellow.
The son of two Los Angeles public school teachers, Christian majored in Urban Studies with a focus in Urban Education at Stanford University. While on campus he was also the Stanford NAACP Executive Chair, a member of the Students of Color Coalition, and led programming on gender & masculinity, sexual assault, and relationship abuse as the president of the Lambda Nu Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.

Courtnie Phillip | Environmental Equity Fellow
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Courtnie was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. She graduated from Tufts University in 2017 with a B.A. in International Relations with a concentration in Global Health, Nutrition and the Environment. Courtnie’s dedication to racial justice and equity has been informed and shaped by her identity and experience as a first generation Caribbean-American. Throughout her undergraduate career, she sought to make sense of the social inequities that she had witnessed in her community while growing up, as she developed a passion for disparities research, health education and advocacy. She committed to pursuing a career that would focus on advocating for and building the capacity of underserved communities of color, and had the opportunity to learn from internships and volunteer experiences both in the U.S. and abroad in Accra, Ghana.

Gissela Moya | Manny Garcia Fellow, Technology Equity
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Gissela Moya fled Honduras with her sisters when she was 11 years old. She reunited with her parents in Ontario, California after being apart for five years, and grew up there as part of a mixed-status family. This pushed her to elevate the voices of undocumented students, connect the community to legal access and work with policymakers to find a solutions to immigration.

Recently, she graduated from UC Berkeley with a bachelor’s degree in political science. Before UC Berkeley, she attended Chaffey College in Southern California. There, she learned the importance of community, the power of her story and awareness about how to find resources.

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