Leilani has been working with youth in after-school programs since she was 12. She chose to do dance classes at a local after-school elementary after running into some trouble and hasn't turned her back on educational arts programs for youth since! As an at-risk youth herself, she felt empowered by her ability to lead and the enthusiasm of her students. Since, she has continued to develop her pedagogy for arts education, graduating with a double-major in History of Art and Visual Culture and Sociology, as well as a minor in Dance, from UC Santa Cruz, where she co-founded Rainbow Theater's multicultural dance troupe and served on the Board of Director's for the Cultural Arts and Diversity Resource Center. Currently, she is pursuing her MFA in Creative Inquiry/Interdisciplinary Arts with a concentration in Art and Social Justice. With her extensive background in dance, singing, spoken word and acting, she strives to support young emerging artists to use their arts practices as a form of transformation, healing and empowerment for themselves and their communities.
PROGRam Facilitator, Chay Tadeo
Chay Tadeo, born and raised in Oakland, has had a passion for organizing since they* were politicized by AYPAL. Since then they’ve worked with youth across the Bay Area on issues relating to reproductive justice, ethnic studies, and queer justice. They graduated from UC Riverside with a BA in Ethnic Studies and in Gender & Sexuality Studies. There they started their involvement with the National Democratic Movement of the Philippines and organizing UC service and patient care workers. Today Chay continues organizing for the ND movement through GABRIELA, a Filipina women’s assembly. Outside of organizing, they are are learning about printmaking and using arts as a tool to liberate and educate the people. They are eager as ever to work with and for youth in Oakland, to be the support youth need to heal, transform, and work towards self-determination.
*They is Chay's preferred gender pronoun and not a typo! Read more about gender-neutral pronouns here.