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Climate of Hope 2022

Community Visions for a Healthy future

Thursday, May 26th, 2022, 4-6 pm PST

Major support provided by:

Join us for our fourth Climate of Hope Forum and learn how we are leading the way for just climate solutions.

The Climate of Hope forum will shed light on how people in the Pajaro Valley and beyond are responding to the climate emergency by organizing for innovative and transformative solutions. In the forum, we will use an equity lens to cover intersecting topics such as transportation, building electrification, regenerative agriculture, public health, and more.


Speakers will explore how present and historical oppressions have led to the climate crisis and how we can use the climate crisis as a unique opportunity to rebuild resilient communities and work for social and environmental justice.


The audience will interact through polls, chat, resource-sharing, and organized watch parties

We invite you to support open access to this event as you register by making a secure donation.

Suggested gift range: $15-100.


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L. Vance Taylor

Chief, Office of Access and Functional Need in Governor's Office of Emergency Services

Luis “Vance” Taylor is the Chief of the Office of Access and Functional Needs at the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services. Vance is responsible for ensuring the needs of individuals with disabilities and persons with access or functional needs are identified before, during and after disasters and integrated into the State’s emergency management systems.


Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, Vance was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy as a child and uses a power wheelchair. He has worked in Washington, D.C. as an advisor for two different members of Congress, directed security policy at a national water association and been a principal at a top-ranked homeland security and emergency management consulting firm. Vance is a nationally recognized public speaker and advocate for individuals with disabilities.  


Vance has a Master’s degree in homeland security from the University of Connecticut and an undergraduate degree from Brigham Young University in communications. He is married to his sweetheart, Casey, and they have two wonderful daughters.


Vance and his family live in Rancho Cordova, CA.

Ana Rosa Rizo-Centino

Executive Director, One Step A La Vez

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Michelle I. Sevilla

Climate Justice Network Manager

Michelle I. Sevilla works on local environmental issues and policy in the California State Legislature and is the first Network Manager of the Central Coast Climate Justice Network. She brings a unique lens as a young immigrant from the Philippines, more than a decade of environmental outreach and education experience in the museum setting, and as a volunteer leader in various organizations working in the nexus of equity and justice in the environmental movement. She serves as a Board Member of the Gaviota Coast Conservancy, a Steering Committee Member of 350 Santa Barbara, and is the first Chair of the County of Santa Barbara’s Equity Advisory & Outreach Committee, now formally integrated into the County’s Regional Climate Collaborative.

Iwalani Faulkner

Director, Equity Transit

Lani Faulkner founder of Equity Transit, a local organization, spent part of her youth during the 70’s riding buses and BART through San Francisco and listening to funk music. Lani’s background as a researcher guided her deep dive into local public transit issues as conversations with representatives of underserved populations expressed ways in which their lives were being impacted by local political influences working to dampen underserved voices. Lani is a mom and woman of color who served for 7 years as a mountain bike coach for middle and high school kids...she's also a triathlete and a classically trained opera singer with a BS and MS in Physiology from UCDavis and has been a certified NOLS First Responder since 2007. Years as an undergrad and graduate student at UCDavid ingrained the importance of safe biking routes and robust public transportation.


My photo has a story. A friend produced a video about peace and communication shortly after the Trump elections which left so many friends and family estranged. For the video, we all chose a color, red or blue, to wear on our faces to indicate which 'side' we were going to be playing for the video. I chose RED because my philosophy is to put myself in the skin of another to try to understand where they are coming from.


Irene Juarez O'Connell

Co-Director, Food What?!

Irene is a Xicana visual artist, muralist, cultural worker, and active organizer committed to uplifting visions of healing, justice, and resilience through the mediums of community-based art and mural-making. Her art centers participatory storytelling, cultural identity, and meaningful place-making. In addition to her art practice, Irene serves as a co-Executive Director at "Food, What?!"-- a program that engages youth across Santa Cruz County in healing relationships with land, food, and each other. Irene received her Bachelors of Arts in both Public Art and Latin American & Latino Studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz. 

Kiki Velez

Natural Resources Defense Council

Kiki Velez works at the Natural Resources Defense Council, where she focuses on the transition to clean electricity in California's buildings. She collaborates with stakeholders and policymakers to transform the state’s building stock in alignment with pressing climate, equity, and affordability needs, including through long-term gas system transition planning at the California Public Utilities Commission. Prior to joining NRDC, she worked on gas regulatory reform with the California Building Decarbonization Coalition and Common Spark Consulting, and she assessed just worker transition policies with the BlueGreen Alliance. Her career in climate began with a formative internship in Chair David Hochschild's office at the California Energy Commission. In her free time, she loves to paddle board, tend to her plants, and explore natural history museums. Velez holds a bachelor’s degree in Atmosphere & Energy Engineering from Stanford University and is based in San Francisco.


Roberto C Garcia-Ceballos

Fideicomiso Comunitario Tierra Libre

Roberto C Garcia-Ceballos is a community/cultural organizer and strategist based in Los Angeles (Tongva Land). He was born in Mexico City and raised in San Jose, CA. He is a co-founder of two community-based organizations (Fideicomiso Comunitario Tierra Libre and Community Power Collective) that work collectively to build collective land stewardship, community power building, and cultural vitality.

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Additional Sponsors

Alain Desouches

Bob and Michele Kibrick

Donna Murphy and Mark Mesiti-Miller

Karen Groppi

Laura Solorio

Neumeier Taylor Foundation Fund

Peggy Flynn

Sarah Hulick

The Ahisma Fund 

The Pachamama Alliance

South Bay Facilitators

Thirty Petals Fund

Thank you to all our Publicity Partners!

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Watch Climate of Hope 2022 below:

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