With the exception on studying economics at UMass Amherst, Omari has spent his life in Boston. He’s a man of many talents including being a DJ, a swing dancer, and food systems enthusiast.
Omari is working with the Boston Food Forest Coalition.
“I am excited to take part in the CLF because I want to continue to learning through active involvement in the Jamaica Plain community.”
Nick Martin grew up an hour south of Boston in Rehoboth, Massachusetts. After graduating from Haverford College with a degree in Biology and working in Philadelphia for two years, Nick moved to Boston, serving for one year at the Southern Jamaica Plain Health Center through Americorps. He currently works at the Browne Middle School in Chelsea as a Teaching Associate with Citizen Schools.
Nick is working with the Egleston Farmers Market.
Nick is working with the
“I am excited to take part in the CLF because I am eager to learn more as it pertains to my immediate surroundings. “Thinking Globally, But Acting Locally” is a saying that I live by. I know that the CLF will provide the tools necessary to learn and grow as a local leader and Social Change Agent.”
Arland Joshua Preston was born on Sept. 16, 1989 at Mount Sinai Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. He was later adopted and his name was changed to Joshua Arland McFadden. Joshua was raised in Daytona, Florida and in May of 2007 he graduated from Mainland High School. In August of 2007 Joshua moved South Carolina to attend Benedict College a small HBCU located in Columbia. Joshua graduated with high honors from Benedict College in May of 2011 and in August enrolled in Seattle University (SU) to begin work on his Master’s Degree. After graduating from SU with a degree in Higher Education Administration Joshua relocated to Boston to become a corps member with City Year Boston, an AmeriCorps program. Joshua left his work with City Year to begin work as a Transitional Employment Specialist with Youth Options Unlimited Boston. His love for communities and their residents continued through a position as a Community Organizer with The Union of Minority Neighborhoods. At The Union of Minority Neighborhoods, Joshua worked specifically with community partners and residents of the Bromley Heath Public Housing Development. Currently, Joshua works for State Representative Jeffrey Sánchez, Chairman of Heath Care Financing. He continues to serve the Boston community as Representative Sánchez’s Legislative Aide/District Liaison to the 15th Suffolk District, serving the communities of Jamaica Plain and Roslindale.
Joshua is supporting the State of Our Neighborhood event.
“I am excited to take part in the CLF because I want to actively contribute to the community I live in while deepening my understanding of how Food Justice is envisioned in our neighborhoods.”
Valerie Oorthuys is a community food systems planner, originally from Seattle. She recently completed a masters in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning from Tufts University and has a BA from Earlham College. Her past research and projects have focused on vacant land use in Boston, opportunities for entrepreneurship, and storytelling as a method of planning. Through this fellowship, she hopes to learn more about land use and community ownership as it pertains to the Boston Food Forest Coalition. A resident of Jamaica Plain, Valerie is often found tending her community garden plot.
Valerie is working with the Boston Food Forest Coalition.
Andrea is studying Journalism with a concentration in Sociology at Boston University. She was born and raised in Miami, Florida and this will be her first real New England winter. She enjoys reading, photographing and developing film, and exploring the city. She is passionate about gender equality, social justice, and civic engagement. After finishing her BA, she plans to take a year off and travel, learning and experiencing different cultures.
Lourdes was born and raised in New York City and has 14 siblings. She attended college for 6 years while raising her son. She majored in education and did an internship in a nonprofit during college, where she fell in love with human services. Lourdes has been working for nonprofits for the past 20 years. She is committed to assisting people navigate through tough times; assisting them and their families by providing services in well-being, employment, education and living healthy lives. Lourdes has attended several professional development and workshops in Human Services, Education and Program Management/Coordinator. She is a trained Licensed Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselor and has an Associates Degree in Word Processing and spent 2.5 years majoring in Education. She is currently the College/Career Readiness instructor and Career/College Advisor as well as the Program Coordinator for the JP Adult Learning Program.
Lourdes is supporting JP NET’s Community Outreach and Engagement.