THE EXPERTS & ACTIVISTS
Aisha Yaqoob, Executive Director,
Georgia Muslim Voter Project
Aisha Yaqoob is the founder of the Georgia Muslim Voter Project, an initiative to increase voter registration and turnout in the Muslim community in Georgia. She completed her Masters of Public Administration from the University of Georgia in May 2016 after completing her undergraduate degree in Journalism/Public Relations in 2013.
Heidi Beirich - Director, The Intelligence Project,
Southern Poverty Law Center
Heidi Beirich leads the SPLC’s Intelligence Project, which publishes the award-winning Intelligence Report and the Hatewatch blog. She is an expert on various forms of extremism, including the white supremacist, nativist and neo-Confederate movements as well as racism in academia.
Naomi Tsu - Deputy Legal Director, Immigrant Justice,
Southern Poverty Law Center
Naomi Tsu oversees the SPLC’s legal and advocacy work on behalf of immigrants in the Deep South. She represents clients who have experienced wage theft, discrimination, human trafficking and other abuses.
Angeles Valenciano - Chief Executive Officer,
National Diversity Council
Angeles Valenciano was recently appointed as chief executive officer of the National Diversity Council (NDC), becoming the first female CEO of this major nonprofit. In this role, she will continue to advance the NDC’s mission of fostering diversity and inclusion in the workplace. She will also focus on strenghtening partnerships with businesses, academia and the community at large.
Jeff Graham - Executive Director,
Jeff is the executive director of Georgia Equality, an organization that works to advance fairness, safety and opportunity for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender communities throughout Georgia. Jeff began advocating on LGBT and AIDS related issues as a college student in the mid-1980s and has continued his advocacy on these issues since that time.
Robert Salcido, Jr. - Community Organizer,
Equality Texas & Pride Center San Antonio
Robert Salcido, Jr. is a regional field organizer for Equality Texas, the only statewide LGBT rights advocacy group in Texas. He oversees field operations to include educational initiatives aimed at creating a greater understanding of nondiscrimination ordinances.
Rev. Kim Sorrells -Ordained Minister,
United Church of Christ
Kimberly Nichole Sorrells was ordained to the Christian ministry at Central Congregational Church United Church of Christ on February 23, 2014. Kim is serving as Minister to Children and Youth at St. Mark United Methodist Church in Atlanta. One of the great joys of the ordination service was the presence of members and youth from St. Mark including a joint choir.
Dr. Rogelio Sáenz -Dean of the College of Public Policy,
University of Texas at San Antonio
Rogelio Sáenz is Dean of the College of Public Policy and holds the Mark G. Yudof Endowed Chair at the University of Texas at San Antonio. Sáenz has written extensively in the areas of demography, Latina/os, race and ethnic relations, inequality, immigration, public policy, social justice, and human rights.
Edward Ahmed Mitchell -Executive Director, Georgia Chapter,
Council on American-Islamic Relations
Edward Ahmed Mitchell is a Muslim-American attorney and former journalist who serves as Executive Director of CAIR Georgia. Mitchell, a graduate of Morehouse College and Georgetown University Law Center, previously served as a criminal prosecutor for the City of Atlanta.
Kwajelyn Jackson -Reproductive Justice Advocate
Kwajelyn is All-Options’ Board Treasurer, and currently serves as the Community Education & Advocacy Director at Feminist Women’s Health Center (FWHC) in Atlanta, GA, where she manages volunteer engagement, leadership development, education programs, community outreach, and legislative advocacy work to improve reproductive health, rights and justice in Georgia.
Shokare Nakpodia -Founder and Creator,
DreamWeek - DreamVoice, San Antonio
For Shokare Nakpodia, language is everything. Not just the literal words we speak, but also the definitions and beliefs we associate with every utterance. “People underestimate the power of language,” says Nakpodia, founder of DreamWeek San Antonio, which takes place Jan. 8-19. “A lot of our fighting is because of a lack of communication.”
Eric Wright -Professor of Sociology & Public Health,
Georgia State University
Eric R. Wright is a 2nd Century Initiative (2CI) Professor of Sociology and Public Health and Chair of the Sociology Department at Georgia State University. He holds a B.A. in sociology from Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Oregon and an M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology from Indiana University Bloomington. As a medical sociologist, his research interests center on social and public policy responses to mental health and illness, substance use and addictions, sexual health, and HIV/STI prevention.
Sir Maejor Page -President of Greater Atlanta,
Black Lives Matter
Sir Maejor Page is actor, model and now Atlanta's most emerging activist and community leader. Most known for his role in FX American Horror Story Coven. Sir Maejor decided to use to his influential platform to engage his followers in social justice. He believes "everyone has a social responsibility and moral obligation to speak up and get involved with civil and human rights, no longer can we sit idle as these tragedies unfold right before our very eyes"
Gabe Pelz -
Transgender Rights Activist
Gabe Pelz, a transgender man who transitioned while working as a line cook at a small restaurant alongside his mother in rural Georgia. The owners of the restaurant refused to refer to Gabe by his male name and pronouns and prohibited his coworkers from doing so (including his supportive mother). The restaurant effectively breached his privacy, revealed his transgender status to customers, and put Gabe at risk for further harassment and even violence.