Our board is made up of diverse community leaders that have years of experience in civic and political engagement in under-represented Austin communities. Our workshops are led by local experts in their given field who also will be available as mentors to participants.
Chas Moore is the co-founder of the Austin, Texas based – Austin Justice Coalition a grassroots activist-led organization aimed at demanding criminal justice reform and building community at both the local and national level.
An advocate for the underserved, Chas champions efforts that deliberately meet community needs like back-to-school drives, fundraisers for those who have been brutalized by police, feeding the hungry and pioneering programs for black youth, men and women.
Chas Moore believes that hope for equality and generational change must begin with the reshaping and reclaiming of a black community.
Bobby Levinski is an environmental and real estate attorney who currently represents nonprofit organizations (including the Save Our Springs Alliance and Great Springs Project) on matters related to natural resource conservation and the impacts of development. Bobby has also been extensively involved in municipal policy since 2005, having served as a policy advisor for three Austin City Council Members. Bobby earned a Doctor of Jurisprudence (J.D.) from The University of Texas School of Law, and has a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Urban Studies from UT as well. In his spare time, Bobby plays and coaches soccer.
Susana Almanza is a founding member and Director of PODER (People Organized in Defense of Earth and her Resources), a grassroots environmental, economic and social justice organization. Susana has overcome poverty, prejudice, and segregated schools to face down some of the world’s most powerful transnational corporations.
Susana is an indigenous person of the continent of America and resides in East Austin, Texas. She is a longtime community organizer, and educator, mother and grandmother. Susana participated in the civil rights movement as a Brown Beret taking up issues of police brutality, housing, quality education and equity in school systems and health care as a right not a privilege.
Susana Almanza is a proven leader and nationally recognized environmental justice activist. Susana is a model of civic engagement; Almanza has spent her life organizing for the advancement of the underprivileged in the neighborhoods of East Austin and beyond. Susana served on the City of Austin’s Planning Commission, Parks and Recreation Board, Environmental Board and the Community Development Commission. Susana continues her struggle for human rights demanding environmental justice and a better quality of life for people of color, all humanity and for future generations.
Dr. Lauren Ross
Dr. Lauren Ross is an environmental engineer, a writer, community organizer and trainer. During four decades of environmental work, Dr. Ross helped to pass the Save Our Springs citizen’s referendum to strictly regulate development, close a hazardous waste facility in an East Texas African-American community, and bioremediate soils in Post-Katrina New Orleans.
Dr. Ross has designed and constructed sustainable infrastructure for global justice movements around the world: from rain collection and solar showers for Compesino farmers at the Cancun, Mexico World Trade Organization meetings; gray water systems for field kitchens at Scotland’s G8 meetings, to a bicycle-mounted portable composting toilet for the Free Trade Area of the America meetings in Miami, Florida. She is a founder and organizer with Undoing Racism Austin and Undoing White Supremacy Austin. She teaches community classes in facilitation, consensus, and anti-racist analysis through the lens of whiteness. She is currently working on projects to challenge racism and implement a water supply plan for the next 100 years in her home city, Austin, Texas.