Our Staff & Board

Coleman Staff: 

Coleman Board:

  • Leon Augustine – Licensed financial advisor with Edward Jones.
  • Steve Bingham (Treasurer) Staff attorney emeritus, Bay Area Legal Aid
  • Malea Chavez  Staff Attorney and JusticeCorp Site Supervisor, San Francisco Superior Court 
  • Rosario Cervantes (President)—Consumer rights advocate with the CA Public Utilities Commission
  • Dr. Prudence Carter—Professor of Education and (by courtesy) Sociology at Stanford University and Faculty Director of the John W. Gardner Center for Youth and Their Communities
  • Curtis Chan, M.D.—Medical Director of Maternal, Child & Adolescent Health, San Francisco Department of Public Health.
  • Rick Judd (Treasurer), Retired nonprofit and city Attorney
  • Maria Luz Torre  (Vice President) – Director and lead organizer for SF Parent Voices
  • Ianthia Mack—Former PAY member; Community Organizer
  • Giuliana Milanese—Community and Political Organizer, Civil Rights activist
  • Greg Tanaka (Secretary) — Attorney, Asian Pacific Islander Legal Outreach
 
Rosie Balberan, Youth Organizer 
Email: rbalberan@colemanadvocates.org
 
Rosie Balberan was born and raised in San Francisco. Having two parents as musicians, she was influenced by various arts and forms of self expression. Her inspiration for organizing comes from her family; especially her uncle, a community figure who has always been involved in community work and was always passionate about social justice. Once knowledgable of her natural leadership abilities, she began organizing within the schools she attended beginning with fundraising for the people of Haiti after the devastating earthquake in 2010 at her middle school. During her freshman year at Balboa, she became a youth member of YMAC and continued developing through the leadership pipeline until she graduated from Independence High. Now, Rosie is the Americorps Intern for Coleman Advocates and continues her passion with the arts and her love of knowledge.
 
 
Kevine Boggess, Director of Policy 
 Email: kboggess@colemanadvocates.org
 
Before joining the Coleman staff team, first as part-time support for SMAC and then as our Program Lead for our Youth Organizing Project, Kevine worked with Black Youth Vote in Atlanta and led the Morehouse University Amnesty International chapter. While at City College of San Francisco Kevine served as the Student Body President and Coordinator of Students Serving Students (S Cubed), a peer mentoring program at CCSF.
 
  
Cynthia Bourjac, Program Associate
 Email: cbourjac@colemanadvocates.org
Cynthia was born and raised in Southern California and moved up to the bay to fulfill her dream of engaging in community politics and action. She attended UC Berkeley where she was involved with voter registration efforts on campus and local campaigns to overturn Citizens United. She developed a fervor for community service at a young age and has been involved with community work since she was a teenager. She has worked as a volunteer and kitchen coordinator for various food banks throughout Los Angeles, worked with state assembly members in efforts to alleviate issues facing homeless communities, and has volunteered with diverse non profits that work towards providing equitable access to higher education. Before coming to Coleman Advocates, Cynthia worked as a paralegal, advocating for immigrant workers that faced exploitation in their workplace. As a Program Associate, Cynthia hopes to continue to learn from a community that she resonates with and help others understand the importance of community organizing and the power of education.
 
 
 
Toni Hunt Hines, Parent Organizer

Email: thines@colemanadvocates.org
 
Chanella Hunter, Youth Organizing Coordinator
Email: chunter@colemanadvocates.org
 
Chanella Hunter is a San Francisco native who got involved with Coleman Advocates in high school as YMAC member. As a YMAC leader, she supported campaigns on issues including jobs for students, closing the achievement gap and winning A-G required curriculum in all schools. She also served for two years as the Coleman Youth Justice Corp intern. 
 
 
Jessica Inson, Youth Organizing Coordinator
Email: jinson@colemanadvocates.org
 
A San Francisco native and former Coleman youth leader, Jessica grew up in the Mission district. She first got involved with Coleman when she was a sophomore in at June Jordan High School, an SF public school with a social justice curriculum and service learning program that inspired Jess’ participation in Coleman’s youth organizing program, Youth Making a Change. At June Jordan, she developed an understanding of injustice and oppression and through YMAC she was able to put her ideas for change into practice through policy reform campaigns. Jess was a youth member, leader, and intern at Coleman before becoming the Youth Organizing Program Coordinator. Throughout, she has maintained her passion for and commitment to organizing young people and making change for the next generation.
 
 Sara Leaverton, Director of Administration 
Email: sleaverton@colemanadvocates.org
 
Before moving to San Francisco, Sara grew up in a low income community in rural Oregon. Finding a passion for economic and racial justice in her youth, Sara has worked with community based organizations for years, assisting in various capacities. She attended SFSU and majored in Sociology with an emphasis in Africana studies. While in school, Sara interned at Coleman, supporting with the Solutions Not Suspensions campaign and the re-approval of the Children’s Amendment. Sara also brings administrative, event planning, and marketing experience from the restaurant industry.
 
 

 
Samantha Liapes, Development & Communications Director
Email: sliapes@gmail.com
 
Samantha has over two decades of experience supporting the development and sustainability of social justice organizations at the local and national level. She worked with the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights for eight years, serving as the Director of the Bay Area PoliceWatch project, founding staff and Director of NYC PoliceWatch, Staff Development Coordinator and Development Director. In 2007 and 2008, Samantha ran the Generational Alliance (GA), a national network of progressive youth and student organizations working to promote the voices, vision and leadership of young people from historically disenfranchised communities.  Before that, as an independent consultant based in the Bay Area, Samantha provided training and consultation to numerous local and national organizations in the areas of resource development, membership growth, project management, strategic planning, and communications.
 
 
 
Yaya Ruiz, Parent Organizer
Email: yruiz@colemanadvocates.org
 
Born in Mexico, Yaya’s lived on this side of the dividing and inhuman border since she was 7. She has lived in the southwest and she went to school in San Francisco. As a teenager in the city, she had the privilege of working with and for youth organizations which granted many opportunities for political and spiritual growth. She brings years of experience as a community health worker, organizer, advocate, crisis line counselor and a social justice interpreter.Yaya is a proud momma and on the path of politicized healing for self and community. She is excited to start her medicinal garden (pots by the door !), to dance cumbia and to continue to be a part of a larger movement which sees our human dignity and resiliency ♡!!
 
 
AJ Napolis, Lead Organizer  
Email: ajnapolis@colemanadvocates.org
A.J. Napolis, is a native San Franciscan of Mexican and Nicaraguan descent. He grew up in both the Mission and Excelsior neighborhoods and is very fond of his childhood experiences. A.J. has over 25 years of activism and work in the non-profit sector in such areas as HIV/AIDS prevention, childhood lead poisoning prevention, environmental justice, and violence prevention among youth. You can find A.J. involved and engaged in many community concerns and issues affection people-of color and low-income families including. In his spare time A.J. loves to dance and listen to straight ahead jazz, R&B, Funk and Salsa. A.J. is very proud of his four children Sandino, Aja, Ruben Dario and Corazon. 
 
Neva Walker, Executive Director 
Email: nwalker@colemanadvocates.org

Neva is a long-time youth worker, community organizer and political leader from Minneapolis who recently relocated to the Bay Area. She was born into an activist family; her mother founded and ran community programs at the Sabathani Community Center, located right across the street from the family’s home. Neva herself now has decades of experience working with low income youth and families of color around economic and racial justice issues. She has organized intensively around community demands for affordable housing and opportunities for youth. At age 29, Neva was the first African American woman elected to the Minnesota Legislature in the state’s history. She ran a precedent-setting grassroots election campaign that involved young people of color at every level of leadership. She served 8 years as a legislator before stepping down to return to her organizing roots.