New Voices Are Rising Advisory Board


Azibuike Akaba is a Policy Associate at Regional Asthma Management & Prevention (RAMP.) He has two decades of experience as an environmental consultant & staff member of environmental organizations. He provides scientific & technical assistance to communities nationwide and internationally. Azibuike igraduated from New College of California and trained as a medical technologist at the Letterman Army Institute of Research.

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.

Devilla Ervin was a New Voices Are Rising student participant from 2004 to 2007 and is a graduate of McClymonds High School in West Oakland. He served as a Peer Leader in the 2010, 2012, and 2014 Summer Institutes. He is currently an AmeriCorps volunteer, teaching and mentoring students at West Oakland Middle School.

Michael Kent, MES, has been the Ombudsman for the Contra Costa County Department of Health Services Hazardous Materials Program for 16 years. He represents the Health Department on the Stakeholder Advisory Group of the San Francisco Bay Fish Project & also provides technical support to the County Public Health Department on environmental justice, air pollution & climate change. Previously, Mr. Kent worked for People for Puget Sound in Seattle, Washington & for Communities for a Better Environment. He received a Bachelor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Studies degree from Miami University in Oxford Ohio and a Masters of Environmental Studies from the Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington.

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.

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