New Voices Are Rising Advisory Board


Ina Bendich leads training programs in Restorative Justice for public schools throughout California. She previously served the Director of the Law and Government Program at McClymonds High School, a public college preparatory school in West Oakland. Before leaving the private sector in 2001, Ms. Bendich worked to mentor young people through the Back On Track Tutorial program. She is a graduate of New College of the Law.

Nancy Berlin has worked on social justice issues for more than 30 years. She has designed and organized campaigns for the rights of very low-income people and directed a statewide coalition fighting poverty in California. She currently provides consulting services for nonprofits on organizational development, community organizing, and facilitation and staff coaching.

Kyle Livie is a lecturer in history at San Francisco State University and dean of curriculum at Bentley School, a Bay Area high school. Kyle has worked with high school and college students for over fifteen years, teaching and mentoring students at a variety of institutions, including UC Berkeley’s Early Academic Outreach Program, and UC Berkeley’s successful Summer Bridge program. Kyle is currently researching community development in American cities in the early twentieth century.

Christina McGhee-Esquivel is a Campus Coordinator at EarthTeam Environmental Network where she works with student interns at Oakland High and Richmond High to eliminate litter on their campuses and reduce litter and waste along their watersheds. Previously, Christina was a New Voices Summer Institute student participant in 2007 and is a graduate of Oakland High School and the University of California at Santa Cruz, where she majored in Environmental Studies. She served as a peer leader for the 2011, 2012 and 2014 Summer Institutes.

Mykela Patton a graduate of Oakland’s Skyline High School, is now a freshman at Colby College, where she is studying public policy and environmental studies. She has been an active participant in the Summer Climate Justice Institute two years in a row, serving as New Voices Fellow during the 2016-2017 school year and as a Pod Leader during summer 2017.

Shreya Shankar is the Executive Director of Rooted in Resilience, an organization dedicated to confronting the challenges of climate change and economic recession by boosting regional capacity to provide for everyone’s needs, sustainably and equitably.  Shankar brings a background in design and installation of sustainable energy and water systems.  She is passionate about redesigning the world we live in, and putting historically disadvantaged communities at the center of this process.

Mona Shomali has been working at the intersection of environmental policy and social justice for over 15 years. She has a background in both academia and non profit management. As an adjunct faculty, she taught environmental justice and policy courses at The New School, Pace University and New York University. She has also taught an ecology course at the New York Botanical Garden. Currently, Mona is the Director of the New Leaders Initiative, a youth environmental leadership program that is housed at Earth Island Institute. She is also a reading tutor at Boys and Girls club of West Oakland.

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