Wendy was born in Oakland and has been growing in The Bay since. She graduated with a BA from UC Berkeley. It was thanks to a community nutrition class that opened Wendy to work in and with the public. She has taught in after school programs through AmeriCorps, developing and implementing enrichment workshops, doing case management, and providing academic support for our Oakland youth. Wendy wants to continue working in the health and education sectors. She enjoys doodling, YouTubing, Lake Merritt, wandering around Target, and eating.
Amanda graduated from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo with a degree in Political Science and a Minor in Psychology. Following graduation she went on to work for The Fund for Public Interest Research, a non-profit dedicated to campaigning on both environmental and political issues. In 2009 Amanda went on to graduate from John F. Kennedy University School of Law. As a law clerk she gained experience in the areas of Juvenile Dependency and Civil litigation, specifically wrongful termination based on race, age and gender. TOLA will be a way to combine her two passions, the law and grassroots campaigning
Alvina graduated from UC Davis in 2007 with a BS in Exercise Biology. Her experience has been largely in the non-profit sector for the past 3 years at the YMCA in the Tenderloin community in San Francisco. Her interest has become working with and providing services to at-risk youth and communities. Alvina had the privilege to go to South Africa this past December on a YMCA Study Tour to learn about the communities and the impact of programs provided to them. Her goals include eventually working internationally to provide services and impact at-risk youth communities. Her hobbies lately have been learning to enjoy running more, traveling, and cooking.
Zubair is an Afghan-American. He is 20 years old and lives in Union City. He is currently attending Chabot College but transferring this summer to a UC. His major is Political Science but the ultimate goal is to become a corporate lawyer. Some of his hobbies are reading (especially biographies of prominent historical figures) and watching sports. He is a sport fanatic and the teams he roots for are the Lakers and Green Bay Packers.
Karina was born in 1987 in Watsonville, California – a small agricultural town, also a predominantly immigrant community. As the daughter of immigrant parents, she was exposed to the many challenges that they faced in both the workforce and education system. With her mother’s encouragement and support, Karina graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara with a B.A. in Latin American and Iberian Studies in 2009. Since then, she has worked with various non-profit organizations and youth in the community. Her passion lies in helping others through education and empowerment.
From humble beginnings playing in the apple orchards of Sebastopol, CA., Reese first sought the political spotlight as treasurer of his middle school eighth grade class. After stints as rally commissioner, math club president, and varsity basketball bench warmer at Analy High, Reese took his “talents” to UCLA. Between classes and dorm pranks, Reese connected with his new community by camp counseling, mentoring at-risk kids and interning for community organizations throughout LA. After honing his sandwich-constructing skills, Reese put in almost two years as a tutor, program organizer, and attendance guru for Hamilton High School’s after-school program. Nine majors and a few thousand invigorating discussion sections later, Reese graduated with a BA in English and three mostly-completed minors. Back home, Reese looks forward to using his skills to continue to help improve schools and communities in the Bay Area.
Nathan moved to Oakland in late-2007 after finishing his graduate studies in Public Policy at the College of William and Mary in Virginia. His passion for governance and policy issues has taken many forms from an audit of Oakland Redevelopment Agency to organizing local citizen groups around budgetary and transparency matters and contributing to a blog on recent developments in the realm of foreign policy. Through his experience with the TOLA fellowship, he will gain the tools necessary to effectively organize for the change needed in these trying times.
Lynn Roosevelt Wiggins was raised in Detroit, MI and graduated from Cranbrook-Upper School (1997) and the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor (2003) with a BA in Political Science. Although passionate about International Relations and Security Affairs, Lynn has focused on local and national politics. Since graduating Lynn has lived both in Florida and the Bay Area, and has worked in Government and with Non-Profit Agencies. Primarily, Lynn has focused his energies on Workforce Development and Public Policy, particularly dealing with at-risk youth, formerly incarcerated and adult job seekers. Upon completion of this fellowship Lynn plans to return to Detroit and help implement several strategies to aid his cities on-going renaissance.