Bella oversees and implements TU’s base-building, leadership development, and campaign development. They left high school at fifteen, and four years later, in 2010, began organizing for youth justice and to end practices that push young people out of school. Among the first campaigns they worked on were to ban “willful defiance” as grounds for suspension and expulsion, and to create protections for trans and gender non-conforming young people in California public schools. Bella has been involved with abolitionist and prisoner justice organizing through the Sylvia Rivera Law Project in NYC and Inside/Out in Melbourne. Bella joined Teachers Unite in 2019 and gets a kick out of getting to spend time with only the best and raddest teachers.
email: [email protected]
A long-time friend of Teachers Unite (TU) through the Dignity in Schools Campaign of New York, Charlotte has worked in education advocacy winning youth justice campaigns, education journalism covering student organizing, and education research visiting classrooms across the city. Charlotte came to TU in 2021 to lead development and operations after working as the Policy Director at Girls for Gender Equity, where they built tools to advance police-free schools. The child of a New York City public school teacher, Charlotte is committed to the local movement to transform public schools.
email: [email protected]
Ujju is Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Experiential Learning at The New School. She is excited to support Teachers Unite, an organization she have long admired. Ujju shares Teachers Unite’s vision to abolish the prison industrial complex — in all its shapes and forms, inside and outside of our schools — as we work to build power, leadership, and organizing among teachers, parents, and students to fight for the public schools we need and deserve.
Nicole is a radical educator, trainer, curriculum designer, youth worker, circle keeper and community builder. As the founder of and lead consultant for Culturvate Consulting, Nicole believes that working in close partnership with schools builds the trust, transparency and accountability needed to do the hard work of shifting school culture. Nicole brings over ten years of experience in direct service provision from her roles as the Program Director of a multi-site after school program and Director of School Based Programs and Partnerships for a non profit organization in Brooklyn. In her work, she has supported the positive transformation of programs and schools by leading staff and young people towards a common goal of creating a safer, more equitable and affirming anti-racist and inclusive culture.
Jia Lee is a NYC special education teacher of over 20 years and sits on the steering committees of the Movement of Rank and File Educators (MORE), the social justice caucus within the UFT, as well as, BLM at Schools NYC. Jia is a trained labor organizer through Labor Notes. She believes that worker and community control in our educational institutions are the only path to antiracist practices and systems.
Kristy’s paid work is in philanthropic consulting, where she helps to ensure that progressive and grassroots movements are well resourced. Before that, Kristy has been a former youth worker and has provided trainings and strategic support to education justice campaigns in New England. Her commitment to social and education justice began in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, when displaced students from New Orleans transferred to her Texas high school. She believes in the power of young people and their adult allies to mobilize and create schools that are safe, affirming, and joyful places for learning and growth.
Nicole is an entrepreneur, educator and activist. She is the co-owner of the Sage Street Mill where she and her business partner offer youth camps, community yoga, and live/ work opportunities for students, artists and entrepreneurs in N. Bennington, VT. Her commitment to social and education justice resulted from her work as a teacher, dean and Restorative Justice (RJ) Coordinator at EAR West Side High School in NYC for over a decade. Nicole led a movement to transform the climate and culture of the school by focusing on wellness and restorative justice. As a result, WSH was chosen to be a mentor school and one of the five case study schools for promising practices in restorative justice. Nicole’s leadership in healthy school initiatives earned WSHS national attention with a visit from Michelle Obama after winning a gold medal from the Alliance for a Healthier Generation. Nicole currently mentors two young girls in her UWS neighborhood and is partnering with the Organization for PsychoEducational Tutoring (OPT) to bring services to youth in NYC. As the chairmen of the board for the Kevin M Penn Foundation, she leads the board of directors in the giving of post secondary scholarships. Nicole is a long time member of Teachers Unite and is presently serving on the board in the finance and fundraising committee working alongside teachers, parents and students in the fight for social and economic justice in public schools.
Ashley is committed to improving the opportunities and well-being of young people, especially Black youth, through organizing, legislative advocacy, and movement lawyering. She is the Senior Director of Campaigns at Girls for Gender Equity (GGE) in Brooklyn, NY. At GGE Ashley works to ensure that cis and trans girls and non-binary youth are heard by elected officials and that their needs are reflected in city and state policy decisions. Ashley was a staff attorney at Youth Represent, where she led the representation of youth facing school suspension hearings, and supported the organization’s School Justice Project. She also represented young people in misdemeanor criminal court and civil legal issues. Ashley was previously a Stoneleigh Emerging Leader Fellow and Staff Attorney at the Education Law Center-PA. She is an alumna of Douglass College at Rutgers University and the Howard University School of Law. Ashley’s life work is situated where education justice and the criminal legal system collide, to that end, she is committed to dismantling youth prisons and other forms of state violence, to build communities which invest in youth rather than harm them.
Join our community
Together, we will build a movement.Become a Member