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.
coordinator, Susan Quinlan
Susan Quinlan is a life-long peace and justice activist who has been working and/or living in Oakland for over 25 years. Since discovered the joy of working with Oakland youth in 1994, she has been involved in teaching and mentoring in a number of nonprofit youth leadership programs and within the Oakland public schools. Valuing the transformative power of community based education, Susan co-founded BAY-Peace and has served as Coordinator on a volunteer basis for the last ten years. She is passionate about redirecting resources away from systems of violence, and back into the life-affirming purposes that serve the people and the planet. As a community organizer, Susan is always looking for opportunities to bring young people together to raise their voices within social justice movements. She believes that the creativity and brilliance of Oakland youth is essential to the success of struggles to overcome racism, militarism and other forms of structural violence. It has been her honor to work directly with hundreds of thoughtful and dynamic students and young adults, introducing many of them to activism, and learning countless lessons that only youth can teach. Susan will be on sabbatical from October 2017-2018.
Theater of the Oppressed consultant, Tatiana chaterji
TATIANA CHATERJI is a restorative justice practitioner, youth organizer, artist and educator. She uses liberation arts to heal and activate young people and community members. She currently works as an RJ Coordinator within Oakland Unified School District, also leading circles and theater classes in Alameda County Juvenile Justice Center. A 2016 recipient of the Bay Area Inspire Awards, she guides workshops in arts-based leadership for a group of young women at the intersections of criminalization, social neglect, and commercial-sexual exploitation. Tatiana is a core member at Partners for Collaborative Change, offering coaching and curriculum-building for equity. She facilitates a performance-based residency at the Dublin federal women’s prison through California Shakespeare Theater. She served on the 2015-17 Program Team for Essie Justice Group, a network of advocacy and healing for women with incarcerated loved ones. She conspires with political theatre collectives in her second home of Kolkata, West Bengal (India) and organizes “Beyond Partition,” a space for critical consciousness and healing for members of the South Asian diaspora. Tatiana was Program Leader at BAY-Peace from 2013-15, instrumental in bridging youth power, Theatre of the Oppressed, and counter-militarism. Among her projects were Oakland’s Geography of Resistance, Voices of Formerly Incarcerated Youth (with RJOY/Camp Sweeney), Oakland Listening Sessions (with Crystallee Crain and candidates in 2014 city of Oakland elections), mobilizing youth contingent at crime victims’ summit for healing-centered, alternative CJ reform, youth arts interventions for North Oakland RJ Council, workshops at Ethnic Studies (OUSD) and Free Minds Free People convenings. She is endlessly proud of the legacy and continued growth of BAY-Peace!