April Amey- Advisory Board Member
April is a survivor of incarceration in the California prison system and a survivor of domestic violence. She founded Mothers Educating Mothers at the California Institution for Women, CIW, in Corona, CA. The group helps women fight for their parental rights: custody, visitation, and decision on placement of their children. They also support women to navigate the court system. Prior to her incarceration Amey worked ten years as a nurse and is working to regain her license as Licensed Vocational Nurse, (LVN). Amey is a policy advocate and community activist. Since her release, she has worked as a reentry case manager, a parental and peer educator, and an advocate for family reunification. She is currently working at a transitional housing project.
Vanessa Cain, Advisory Board Member
Vanessa is the creator of Food + Art, and also director of Five Points Youth Foundation. “Art + Food was born out of a need for fresh, sustainable and healthy food choices in South Los Angeles, which suffers from inequalities in healthcare and nutritional resources. The “Art + Food” program provides local resident with events that offer farm-to-table, vegetable-rich, vitamin-dense cuisine, prepared with an artistic, creative flare. Council District 8 has one the highest rates of nutrition-related diseases, including diabetes, childhood obesity, high blood pressure, and cancer.”
Enisa Jakupovic, Board Member
Enisa has an MA in Urban Sustainability from Antioch University Los Angeles with a focus in sustainable textiles procurement. She also has an MA in Tourism and Hospitality from Aalborg University, Copenhagen with a focus in the sustainability of tourism. Enisa works to raise awareness about environmental problems caused by the production, use, and disposal of plastics, synthetic products, and textiles. She shares strategies to divert products out of the landfills and oceans and develop sustainable procurement strategies in workplace environments.
Thomas Porter-Smith, Board Co-Chair
Thomas is a pre-and post-prison advocate. Thomas spent thirty-five years locked-up in the California prison system. Since his release, in 2017, Smith has provided resources and navigation support to other reentering into society. He developed a board of parole hearing packet, which has helped 250+ men, and women to be suitable for parole; men and women sentenced to life in prison and/or who had a three strikes conviction. He currently works Amity Foundation in Los Angeles.
Mary Sutton, Design and Management
Sutton was an activist in the anti-apartheid movement in Minneapolis, and more recently, in Los Angeles, in the local and statewide coalition work to stop prison and jail expansion. She came to LA to support a friend who was locked up for eight years in the women’s prison in Chowchilla, CA. Sutton designed Collective REMAKE in the MA in Urban Sustainability program at Antioch University Los Angeles; and now works full-time to move Collective REMAKE forward through cooperative education and development programs, the implementation of democratic participatory practices, and diverse fundraising efforts. Sutton has over 18 years experience in non-profit management, development, and programming. She is also a graphic designer, and print production artist. Sutton is currently a PhD student in the Graduate School for Leadership and Change at Antioch University.
Bryant Mangum (Sight Zilla), Advisory Board Member
Sight is a Los Angeles artist, activist, healer, and father. He did eight years on a thirty-year sentence for the crime of doing graffiti. He uses art to engage adult youth to participate in collective healing practices. Bryant has successfully implemented, art workshops, mural installation, and community art engagement through the Trauma Prevention Initiative (TPI) project run by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, and funded by the Los Angeles County Arts Commission.