Co-Founders and Co-Directors
(Lisjan Ohlone) Corrina Gould is the tribal spokesperson for the Confederated Villages of Lisjan/Ohlone. Born and raised in her ancestral homeland, the Ohlone territory of Huchiun, she is the mother of three and grandmother of four. Corrina has worked on preserving and protecting the ancient burial sites of her ancestors throughout the Bay Area for decades. She is a Co-Founder/Co-Director of the Sogorea Te’ Land Trust.
(Shoshone Bannock/Carrizo) Johnella LaRose is a lifelong activist. She is the Co-Founder of Indian People Organizing for Change, a grassroots organization that advocates for the Indigenous community. Johnella is a graduate of Mills College with a degree in Cultural Anthropology and Sociology. She is a Co-Founder/Co-Director of the Sogorea Te’ Land Trust.
Land Team Member
Born and raised in her ancestral village of Huchiun, Deja is a core member of the administrative and office team. She goes out on the land along with her two children to lead seed saving, transplanting, and language revitalization.
Land Team Member
Born and raised in the village of Huchiun, “so called” Oakland. Victoria, Yaqui/Mexikah, is a two-spirit visual/digital artist, Po scholar, and creator behind “Land Acknowledgements are not Reparations” graphic. They are out on the land cultivating traditional medicines.
Art and Media
Inés is an interdisciplinary Mestizx artist and media maker with a background in youth work, decolonial nonprofit administration, and community organizing. She leads STLT’s art and media, coordinates projects, organizes events, and works on the land with plant medicines.
Land Team Member
Robert was born and raised in the village of Huchiun and is of Diné and Yurok ancestry. They tend to projects out on the land and in the community, including food distribution, bed prepping, and construction.
Land Team Member
Nazshonnii is a STEM educator and mechanical design engineer working on both land and office projects. She leads food distribution, engineering design, and community outreach.
Land Team Member
Niko is a scholar, professional photographer, and model. He works primarily on the land documenting projects and leading water catchment and construction.
Land Team Member
Kinłichii’nii is a member of the Navajo Nation and Acoma Pueblo tribes. He is out on the land leading construction, water catchment, and solar power projects. In addition to this work, Kinłichii’nii has been a community organizer in the Bay Area since 1998.
Land Team Member
Born and raised in his ancestral village of Huchiun, Cha-Tah is an actor and filmmaker working on increasing Ohlone and Native representation within film and media. He mainly works on the land leading garden care, food distribution, bed prep, planting, and harvesting.
Born and raised in Huchiun/Oakland, Ariel is an interdisciplinary artist and activist. He was part of the team that created the Shuumi Land Tax and works to cultivate reparations to seed rematriation. He supports fundraising, operations, land acquisition and community engagement.
Viola LeBeau is a visual multimedia artist, advocate of traditional knowledge, member of the Hamawwi Band of the Pit River Nation, and descendent of the Cahuilla, Wintun, and Cheyenne River Sioux. She recently graduated with her BA in Sociology and Studio Arts, and is now on community outreach, directorial assistance, and food distribution.
Volunteer Coordinator & Land Team Member
Born and raised in her ancestral village of Huchiun. Cheyenne is a new member of the land team and has been working in the native community all her life. She has worked with the youth, helped with organizing events, protesting for native/human rights, and advocated for native families in the east bay. As she works on the land she brings along her two children to work primarily on planting, leading food distribution, transplanting and harvesting.
Board of Directors
Dr. Beth Rose Middleton Manning
(Afro-Caribbean, Eastern European) — Beth Rose is an Assistant Professor and Department Chair of Native American Studies at the University of California, Davis. Beth Rose is of Afro-Caribbean (Belizean, Jamaican, and Honduran) and Eastern European (Russian, Lithuanian) heritage, and was born and raised in rural northern California, specifically the Mokulumne watershed of the central Sierra Nevada foothills, Miwok country. Beth Rose’s research centers on Native environmental policy and Native activism for site protection using conservation tools. She is also the author of Trust in the Land, an analysis of Indigenous land trusts. She is engaged in participatory action research on Maidu land rights history and contemporary land claims in northeastern California. Beth Rose applies theories from coloniality of power, indigeneity, community development, political ecology, participatory methodologies, and geography. She has received research support from the National Science Foundation, the UC Berkeley Center for Race and Gender, the UC Office of the President, and the Community Forestry and Environmental Research Partnerships program. Beth Rose’s ongoing and future research directions include California Native green entrepreneurship, using environmental statutes for cultural preservation, qualitative GIS mapping of Indian allotment lands, Afro-indigenous populations, the effects of hydropower development on Native lands, tribal resource conservation districts, and indigenizing natural resource policy and planning.
(Mohawk and Ottowa) — Darcie is an attorney specializing in environment, water, and Indigenous land use and is the California Energy Commission’s (CEC) chief counsel. She served as an administrative law judge for the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), presiding over proceedings concerning nuclear decommissioning, affordable energy for low-income customers in the San Joaquin Valley, and utility maintenance/wildfires. Before joining the CPUC, she represented Native American tribes throughout the country on matters involving energy, natural resources, land claims, taxation, water rights, international human rights, and self-determination matters. She also worked at the CEC as a staff counsel and as an advisor to Vice Chair James Boyd. She graduated from the University of California, Davis, School of Law and holds a Master of Science in community development.
Dr. Joanne Barker
(Lenape/Delaware Tribe of Indians) — Joanne is a professor and chair of American Indian Studies at San Francisco State University where she has worked since 2003. She is the author of numerous books including Native Acts: Law, Recognition, and Cultural Authenticity, published by Duke University Press, and the editor of Sovereignty Matters: Locations of Contestation and Possibility in Indigenous Struggles for Self-Determination, published by University of Nebraska Press. She is currently serving on The Sogorea Te’ Land Trust Board and The Critical Ethnic Studies Journal Board.
(Tuolumne Mewuk, Houma-Choctaw) — Kim is Tuolumne Miwok and grew up in the Vallejo area and has worked extensively with the American Indian Bay Area community for over 30 years. She currently is the Director for the Sacred Sites Protection & Rights of Indigenous Tribes, SSP&RIT and is leading the fight for the erasure of Indian Mascots in local schools. Kim has worked for many years supporting the protection of sacred sites and Shellmounds in the Bay Area with Indian People Organizing for Change. She currently works for the local Scotts Valley TANF program, providing resources and training programs for Native people.
Dr. Melissa Nelson
(Anishinaabe/Métis [Turtle Mountain Chippewa]) Melissa K. Nelson, PhD, is an ecologist, writer, editor, media-maker and indigenous scholar-activist. She has served as a Professor of American Indian Studies at San Francisco State University since 2002 and as President of The Cultural Conservancy since 1993. Her work is dedicated to indigenous rights and revitalization, biocultural heritage protection and environmental justice, intercultural solidarity, and the renewal and celebration of community health and cultural arts. She actively advocates for Indigenous Peoples rights and sustainable lifeways in higher education, nonprofits, and philanthropy and is particularly passionate about Indigenous food sovereignty at local, regional and global levels. She is the editor of and a contributor to Original Instructions: Indigenous Teachings for a Sustainable Future (2008), and co-editor of and contributor to Traditional Ecological Knowledge: Learning From the Indigenous Practices for Environmental Sustainability (2018). Melissa is also the writer and host of the Native Seed Pod, a podcast dedicated to Indigenous science and Native foods. Melissa serves on the boards of directors of the Sogorea Te’ Land Trust, the Occidental Arts and Ecology Center, and Slow Food Indigenous Terra Madre.
Julia Hernandez: In Memoriam
(Lumbee/French Canadian) — Julia is a long-time activist on issues of social justice, environmental justice, defending the rights of our youth, and honoring and preserving our Native cultures. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology as well as a BA degree in Criminology with a minor in Ethnic Studies from University of California, Berkeley. She has a Master’s degree in Counseling from California State University, Hayward and an advanced degree in Education Administration. Julia established Nueva Vista High School in the Mount Diablo Unified School District for students at risk of not graduating. She has been involved in Shellmound issues, Sogorea Te’ Land Trust, AIM, IPOC, INMSF, Silver Buffalo Consortium, as well as working with significant others of Combat veterans with PTSD over many years. Julia is happily a great-grandmother of five.