Climate of Hope
Wednesday, August 5, 2020, 3-5 pm PST
Networking Opportunity 5-6 pm
Join us to learn how we can solve the challenges of rising temperatures together.
Let's Beat the Heat!
Regeneración will be hosting our second Climate of Hope Forum online, with Spanish interpretation available, and a virtual networking opportunity following the webinar to continue the conversation. We will be sharing the results of our survey on the climate impacts on Pajaro Valley farmers. Join us to learn from our panel of experts who will discuss how agricultural communities are being affected by rising temperatures and share strategies for centering climate actions and solutions on equity.
Learn more about our featured speakers and panelists below.
Assemblymember Robert Rivas
Assembly District 30
Robert A. Rivas is an American politician from San Benito county currently serving as a member of the California State Assembly from the 30th District. Rivas operates on the following committees: Agriculture, Appropriations, Government Organization, Local Government and Rules.
In his first term in the Legislature, Rivas has advocated several bills to protect the environment and address climate change. In 2019, Rivas introduced AB 1628 and AB 936, both were passed by the Legislature and signed by Governor Newsom. AB 1628 focused on environmental justice, while AB 936 addressed non-floating oil spills. This year, Rivas introduced AB 2954, which directs California’s Air Resources Board to identify a climate goal and best practices to better leverage the State’s natural and working lands (including its farms, rangelands, deserts, and forests) to sequester greenhouse gas emissions.
Rivas carries a bachelor's degree in Government from California State University, Sacramento and a master's degree in Public Administration from San Jose State University.
Deputy Secretary for Environmental Justice, Tribal Affairs and Border Relations, California Environmental Protection Agency
Yana Garcia was appointed by Governor Gavin Newsom in August 2019 to serve as Deputy Secretary for Environmental Justice, Tribal Affairs and Border Relations at the California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA). Prior to her most recent appointment, she served two years at CalEPA as Assistant Secretary for Environmental Justice and Tribal Affairs.
Before joining CalEPA, Yana was an associate attorney at Earthjustice, in the California regional office, in San Francisco. Yana was also a staff attorney at Communities for a Better Environment, serving in Huntington Park and Oakland. Her legal practice areas have focused on environmental justice issues, civil rights, land use, toxics and chemical disclosure, oil and gas extraction, and crude transport. Between 2011 and 2012, Yana served as a legal research attorney at the San Francisco Superior Court’s Civil Division, Office of the Presiding Judge.
Yana holds a degree in politics from the University of California, Santa Cruz and a law degree from Northeastern University School of Law.
JSM Organic Farms
Javier was born and raised in Michoacan, Mexico. His father was a farmer, and Javier started farming in Mexico at eleven years old. Javier came to the United States in his twenties, eventually travelling to the Central Coast and deciding to return to farming. Javier worked for a fresh cut flower grower in the area before establishing his own organic farm on two acres in 2012. Since then, he has expanded his operation to 40 acres that are certified organic by California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF). JSM Organic Farms specializes in strawberries, heirloom tomatoes, summer squash, peppers and cut flowers. JSM Organic Farms has the capacity to grow 300 varieties of flowers including both annuals and perennials. Javier grows South African native plants such as proteas, leucospermum, and safari sunsets as well as flowers like ranunculus, tulips, lilies, lavender, calendula, heather, and boronia. JSM Organic Farms sells its products to farmers’ markets, retail stores, and a couple of wholesalers.
Claudia Pineda Tibbs
Sustainability Professional and Conservation Communicator, La Eco Latina
Claudia Pineda Tibbs is a first-generation Salvadoran-American, scientist, birder, nature lover, ocean conservationist, and sustainability professional. Claudia’s “Eco Latina” identity and brand came to be as a result of her professional experience as a bilingual science educator and ocean science communicator. Claudia centers her work on the intersection of environmentalism and culture. Claudia strives to increase opportunities for BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) to develop their own environmental identity and conservation ethic in order to advocate for regional, state, and national environmental justice policies impacting marginalized communities and communities of color.
Claudia has held various community outreach and multicultural education positions along the central coast of California. Claudia received her B.S. in Earth Systems, Science and Policy with a concentration in Marine and Coastal Ecology from the California State University, Monterey Bay. Claudia attributes her passion for environmental advocacy and environmental justice issues to her father, Oscar Morales Pineda. Claudia credits her high school science teacher, Ms. Stevens from South Gate High School with helping her identify her spark for education and communication.
Dr. Flavio Cornejo
Salud Para La Gente Clinic
Dr. Cornejo graduated from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey in 2002 and finished his residency with the University of California Davis in 2005. He is a doctor of osteopathic medicine. He is board certified in Family medicine and practices at Salud Para La Gente Clinic in Watsonville, California.
Marketing Outreach Representative, Monterey Bay Community Power
Alexis Garcia-Arrazola is the Marketing Outreach Representative for MBCP, dedicated to making clean energy programs accessible to underserved communities. Alexis brings together community partners, and local non-profit organizations to ensure a comprehensive and coordinated public message surrounding undeserved community outreach through overseeing and coordinating the Agriculture Field Promotion Program for MBCP. Alexis also Plans the coordination of Spanish content on various media, including Radio, News, print and other communications tools.
Prior to joining Monterey Bay Community Power, Alexis served as a news personality for Noticias Univision Costa Central, and as an assistant for a Congressional office on Capitol Hill. Alexis holds a dual bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Legal Studies from California State University Monterey Bay.
Rebecca J. Garcia
Mayor of Watsonville
A native of Watsonville, Rebecca has served on the City Council since 2014 and is currently Mayor of Watsonville. She has been a lead for many City resolutions and ordinances including reaffirmation of Watsonville as a Sanctuary City, addressing human trafficking, and providing safe and affordable housing. Most recently at her request the City voted to ban flavored cigarettes, all vaping products, and tobacco in pharmacies. Rebecca developed a partnership between the City and the Pajaro Valley Unified School District to create a successful paid summer youth internship to promote civic engagement. For her advocacy on Climate Change, Rebecca received two Beacon Spotlight Awards at the League of Cities annual conference —one for greenhouse gas reduction and the other for energy savings. As a city council member she sits on the Santa Cruz County Housing Authority, the Santa Cruz County Youth Violence Prevention Steering Committee, and the Santa Cruz County Latino Affairs Commission.
Natalie Hernandez is a specialist in environmental policy and community planning. Since being at Climate Resolve, she’s managed the “Ready for Tomorrow?” climate preparedness research, co-authored the State’s upcoming Adaptation Planning Guide, led community outreach for an urban cooling project in Canoga Park, and provided technical expertise on various climate grant programs. Natalie is knowledgeable about climate change government processes, funding, stakeholder engagement, and resilience.
She has a strong passion for environmental justice and climate equity, which she attributes to growing up in Long Beach, a core hub of goods movement, air quality issues, and climate adaptation in the Los Angeles area. Her past experience includes positions at the California Natural Resources Agency, California Air Resources Board, Institute for Local Government, and USC Program for Environmental Equity.
Natalie holds a Master of Urban Planning degree from USC and a BA in Urban Studies and Spanish from Loyola Marymount University. In her spare time, she enjoys running, eating tacos with her familia, and learning from fun people and new places. Aside from her love of the Los Angeles region, she has lived in Sacramento, San Salvador, and Mexico City, and she claims that part of her heart stays in each of those cities.
Associate Organizer, Communities Organized for Relational Power in Action (COPA)
Mayra is a native of Watsonville, born into an agriculture working family. She attended San Jose State University where she studied Sociology with an emphasis in Community Change. While at SJSU, she served as President of the Student Homeless Alliance (SHA), an SJSU student-led organization that advocates for unhoused and housing insecure students. Her work there led to a deal that helped produce $3M in student housing aid, a centralized student resource center, a pilot program of 12 emergency beds, and a rental assistance program for students. Mayra is a recipient of 2020 Women of the Year Senate District 15.
In her current role, as an Associate Organizer at Communities Organized for Relational Power in Action (COPA), a broad-based organization of 27 institutions in Monterey, Santa Cruz and San Benito Counties, she trains leaders to develop their capacity to work on issues affecting their families. COPA is part of the Industrial Areas Foundation, the nation’s largest and oldest broad-based organizing network. Through her work in COPA, she is able to continue making meaningful lasting positive changes in the Central Coast and beyond.
Mayra’s passions include being of service and protecting mother earth, amongst other things. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, visiting the local beaches and nature spots, and learning or picking up a new skill.