As a multiracial woman, Alicia Fleming has always been drawn to issues of social justice, civil rights and inequality. Alicia developed strong beliefs about economic inequality as she was raised by a single mother, then became a foster child and a ward of the state. Alicia was one of the 10% of foster youths in this country to both graduate high school and pursue higher education. Ms. Fleming hopes to be a voice working to represent people who often get left behind or overlooked by our system by exploring ways in which we can be more inclusive in our activism and better, more effective advocates. She is devoted to improving our means for dealing with poverty and creating true equality for all people.
Amelia represents Massachusetts High School Democrats as an executive board member and communications director.
Andrea Schmid is a community organizer for the Pioneer Valley Workers Center. She is from San Pedro Sula, Honduras, and grew up in Miami, FL. After graduating from Smith College in 2017, she worked in food access outreach for low income communities for an organization called Healthy Hampshire and joined SustainUS, a youth climate justice group. After helping organize a walk out from a White House panel that consisted of CEOs from different fossil fuel industries at the UN Climate Neogitations (COP23), Andrea joined the PVWC team. While she is new to the immigration justice movement, she has always been involved in the struggle as a Central American and as a friend and relative of workers and migrants. Furthermore, she believes the mission of these movements cannot be separated, as the rights of workers and migrants are intimately connected to the health and state of their land, and the policies that shape it.
The Amandla Chorus
The Amandla Chorus is a social justice choir celebrating our 30th Anniversary this year. We sing in prisons, homeless shelters, head injury units, and on behalf of refugees, children, the elderly, and the planet. We’ve collaborated with Nelson Mandela, Pete Seeger, and Malala Yousafzai, among others.
Daisy is a 37 year old native of Gurabo, Puerto Rico who credits her successes to her Hispanic upbringing in the North End of Springfield. She is currently the C-4 Board Chair for Neighbor – to – Neighbor and a member of the National Council for Incarcerated and Formerly Incarcerated Women and Girls, where she supports and advocates for criminal justice reform. A proud Women’s Fund LIPPIsta and a member of Voices from Inside, two of the many organizations she credits with her leadership development. A single mother to a young man, she works in the field of substance use and addiction as a Recovery Coach Supervisor for the Gandara Center and completed her Bachelors in Social Work at Elms College. Daisy begins her last semester at Westfield State University where she is completing her Masters in Social Work pursuing her dreams of working in Macro level Social Work.
Felixis Jinx from the hills of Western Massachusetts, FJ formed in the summer of 2015 at while attending rock camp at The Institute for the Musical Arts. That’s where the band’s original three members Eva, Willa, and Zoe wrote their first song,”Kick Ass Chicks,” which has gone on to become a feminist pop anthem in the local youth music scene. Drummer, Max, joined the band to help max out the sound in 2016. Felixis Jinx features Eva on vocals and bass, Willa on keys and vocals, Zoe on guitar and vocals, and Max on drums. The band has played a wide variety of local venues, including opening for singer-songwriter Hayley Reardon.
Jennifer Levi, Esq.
Jennifer L. Levi is the director of GLAD’s Transgender Rights Project and a nationally recognized expert on transgender legal issues. She is one of two transgender attorneys leading the legal fight against President Trump’s transgender military ban. She has served as counsel in a number of precedent-setting cases establishing basic rights for transgender people. She co-edited Transgender Family Law: A Guide to Effective Advocacy, the first book to address legal issues facing transgender people in the family law context and provide practitioners the tools to effectively represent transgender clients, and is a law professor at Western New England University. She serves on the Legal Committee of the World Professional Association for Transgender Health, and is a founding member of both the Transgender Law & Policy Institute and the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition.
Kimaya first went on tour as a workshop leader at age eleven, when she took her homegrown and self-directed children’s music trio on the road to local schools and libraries, teaching international music from 20 distinct vocal traditions spanning 27 languages. Since then, Kimaya has toured for several months over three continents, performing and teaching vocal music in workshops with participants of all ages. Currently she teaches elementary- and high-school-aged students, both in ensembles and in private lessons tailored specifically to the developing voice. With a deep love for collaboration, Kimaya has contributed writing and music to plays, operas, podcasts, recordings, and TV shows as a contributing writer, librettist, lyricist, songwriter, and devising artist. She is currently recording her first solo album.
Soy Marleny Amaya. Tengo dos hijos, Argel Hernández y Brandy Hernandez. Soy salvadoreña. Vivo en Amherst por casi 20 años. Trabajo en Northamton en Haymarket café casi 10 años. Soy cosinera y me gusta, lo hago aparte de eso es manera para sobrevivir en este país donde existe muchas oportunidades. Soy miembro activo de Pioneer Valley Workers Center por 3 meses o un poquito más. En las últimas semanas, he estado organizando con trabajadores salvadoreños que tienen TPS para llamar attencion a las acciones destructivas de la administración de Trump a nuestra comunidad.
My name is Marleny Amaya. I have two children, Argel and Brandy Hernandez. I am Salvadorean. I have lived in Amherst for almost 20 years. I work in Northampton at the Haymarket Cafe for almost 10 years. I am a cook, and I like the work. Its also a way to survive in this country where there are many opportunities. I have been an active member of the Pioneer Valley Workers Center for three months, maybe a bit more. In the last few weeks, I have been organizing with other workers to bring attention to the Trump Administration’s policies to end Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Salvadoreans and highlight how these destructive policies are affecting our communities.
Mia Flowers is a Junior in highschool invested in making social and political platforms for students. She is the leader of the Massachusetts March for our Future that’s initiative is to, show lawmakers that although people under the age of 18 are not able to vote, we are still invested in the policies that govern our country and we want to make our views heard. She is a Cabo Verdean girl from Connecticut and the daughter of an Immigrant mother. Mia has done work with the ACLU, organized a Black Lives Matter demonstration, and is a co-leader for the Gender and Sexuality Alliance at her school. She attended the Women’s March on Washington last year, and is excited to be partnering with the Women’s March to make March for our Future and its values, known nationwide.
Pamela Means Band
Pamela Means Band is an exciting group of superb musicians comprising an all female, women of color, empowered trio, founded and led by Pamela Means, exclusively performing Pamela Means original music and select groovy covers (by artists of color).
The Nields story begins with the two sisters. Nerissa and Katryn a grew up singing folk songs in the kitchen and in the back seat of the family car and have since become an institution in the Pioneer Valley. Well into their third decade as a musical partners and—judging by this sublime album––at the very top of their game, the Nields turn to meditations on time, and turning points, their roots and community – both musical and personal – but they also express joy in the present, faith in the future, and a whole lot of hope and promise.
Rachel is a Social Worker/Sex Therapist and a disability activist, with a specific interest in the intersections of sex and disability.She is also a parent, a baker, but not a candle stick maker. She is committed to creating access for all sorts of folks, but particularly those at the most vulnerable fringes.
Shanique is a native of Kingston, Jamaica and current resident of Springfield. She is the Planned Parenthood Advocacy Fund Western & Central MA Organizer and she has spent the last 5 years committing herself to organizing around women’s, social and racial justice issues. Out side of her professional role she advocates for women through her volunteer roles as a League of Women Voter Springfield member, Zonta Club of Quabog Valley member, board member of the Kiwanis Club of Springfield and newly elected Commissioner for the Hampden County Commission on the Status of Women and Girls. Her work and volunteerism is apart of her life long goal to help advance the status of women especially those of color, politically, socially, and economically.
Tahirah Amatul-Wadud runs a successful law practice in Western Massachusetts with a focus in domestic relations and civil rights law. A graduate of Elms College in Chicopee and Western New England University School of Law in Springfield, Tahirah was named a 2016 Top Woman of Law by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly. She is a volunteer commissioner for the Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women, a member of the Family Advisory Council of Boston Children’s Hospital, and, currently, a candidate for the 1st Congressional District! Tahirah understands the need to prioritize healthcare for every person and is thus an avid supporter of single payer health care platform.
Wendy Robinson is a lifelong supporter of reproductive rights and reproductive justice. She has been an active advocate since 2014 as Director of Voice of Choice, and is now on the Board of the Abortion Conversation Projects since the two organizations merged. She is also a member of the Abortion Care Network, and she volunteers with Planned Parenthood and the Abortion Rights Fund of Western Massachusetts. She is a retired budget analyst with 20 plus years of corporate experience, most recently in healthcare finance. She lives in Northampton, where she is on the Ward 3 Neighborhood Association Board, volunteers at the Northampton Survival Center and the Pioneer Valley Workers Center ride-share program, and participates in Trump resistance activities whenever possible. She has also had a local role in several recent political campaigns – which she looks forward to continuing in 2018! Wendy believes that abortion is a responsible parenting decision and a positive social good, that it should be safe legal and accessible, and that speaking out about it is a powerful and empowering way to fight the stigma that still surrounds it.