Collaborators

Name: AW Shields

Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

AW Shields is the founder of Root Cause Collective, a collective of health and wellness professionals committed to liberative, interdisciplinary, and preventative wellness services, that center on anti-oppressive mental model development. Since implicit bias, prejudice, and systemic oppression are also psychological phenomenons, AW believes there is a distinct need for trained mental health professionals committed to leadership in this work. 

With 10 years of experience in the mental health field, AW leans into her experience as a psychotherapist, chaplain, graduate adjunct faculty, and community organizer to offer a unique, interdisciplinary approach to anti-oppression work that pays close attention to the nuanced intersections of social identity, belief systems, and mental health. 

AW is also known for her successful match-making skills, linebacker role on her intermural flag football team, and hosting big parties whenever possible.

Areas of expertise related to Diversity/Equity/Inclusion:

  • Organizational Wellness Equity and Anti-Oppression Change Management
  • How to Get Started: Foundations for Organizational DEI /Anti-Oppression Work
  • Organizational Assessment & Strategic Planning (DEI / Anti-Oppression Work)
  • Engaging Hard Conversations: Psycho/Social/Emotional Skills & Strategies for DEI/ Anti-Oppression Group Facilitation
  • From Implicit Bias to Race Based Trauma: Navigating the Psychological Impact of Systemic Oppression
  • Anti-Racist Leadership/ Supervision Skills 
  • Anti-Racist Clinical Practice for Mental Health & Human Service Professionals

Experience in: facilitation, mediation, training, coaching individuals, coaching groups, strategic planning, program design, curriculum development, crisis response counseling

Adjacent skills that serve organizations working on equity or justice: 

  • Leadership Mental Health and Wellness 
  • Activist Mental Health and Wellness 
  • Staff Wellness & Retention Support 
  • POC Mental Health & Wellness 

Social media: linkedin.com/in/aawshields/

Webpage: rootcausecollective.com


Name: Catherine-Mercedes Brillantes Judge

Pronouns: she/her

Catherine-Mercedes Judge has over 16 years of experience leading programs and campaigns across multiple sectors, including labor unions, nonprofits, and government. She enjoys galvanizing diverse groups toward a common goal, cultivating talent, building capacity, and elevating narratives and actions driven toward societal change.

Areas of expertise related to Diversity/Equity/Inclusion:

Organizing leaders committed to creating anti-racist organizations.

Experience in: facilitation, training, coaching, leadership development, stakeholder engagement

Adjacent skills that serve organizations working on equity or justice: event planning, coalition building & public relations

Social media: linkedin.com/in/catherinemercedes/


Name: Chesla Nickelson

Pronouns: She/her

With over a decade of experience as an anti-racist and anti-oppression trainer, facilitator, and speaker, Chelsa helps people develop healthy, liberating, and pleasurable relationships. She is a minister, consultant, and coach, working with individuals, groups, and institutions, on anti-oppression, mental health, sexuality, and faith formation. She earned a Bachelor of Art in Psychology from Spelman College (Atlanta, GA) and a Master of Divinity and a Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy from Christian Theological Seminary (Indianapolis, IN).

Areas of expertise related to Diversity/Equity/Inclusion:

spirituality, sexuality, self-care, and social justice

Experience in: In her community/non-profit work, she has led a variety of programs and initiatives like chaplaincy services for anti-racism nonprofits, spirituality groups for homeless veterans, workshops and therapy groups for young adults preparing for marriage, and anti-racism training and assessments.

Social media:

IG: @revchesla

Webpage: http://www.revchesla.com and http://www.rootcausecollective.com


Name: Derrick Weston

Pronouns: he/him/his

For the last two decades, Derrick has been working on community-based ministry in churches and non-profit organizations, working on issues of education, community development, and health. His most recent work has been exploring food justice and the ways that food intersects with race, land sovereignty, and community health..

Areas of expertise related to Diversity/Equity/Inclusion:

food justice, community health (with a recent emphasis on HIV advocacy and food access)

Experience in: group training, strategic planning, board development

Adjacent skills that serve organizations working on equity or justice: public speaking, writing, video and audio production

Social media:

FB: Derrick Weston
IG:
@foodfaithstory
Twitter:
@foodfaithstory
LinkedIn:
Derrick Weston

Webpage: foodandfaith.org


Name: Larry J. Morris III

Pronouns: he/they

Larry’s life has been dedicated to justice and the work of anti-oppression. Larry has over 15 years of experience as an anti-oppression trainer and has consulted with nonprofits, religious institutions, and faith communities. Larry’s educational experience and his experience as a community organizer have afforded them the opportunity to understand theory and practice, as well as, how to build and support DEI teams as they work toward sustainable institutional and communal change. 

Areas of expertise related to Diversity/Equity/Inclusion:

Intersectional justice, anti-oppression, implicit bias,

Experience in: facilitation, training, coaching individuals, coaching groups, strategic planning.

Adjacent skills that serve organizations working on equity or justice: digital marketing consulting, individual and group discernment processes, public speaking coaching, in-person and digital event planning. 

Social media:

FB: facebook.com/LarryJMorrisIII
IG:
instagram.com/larryjmorris3/
Twitter:
twitter.com/larryjmorris3
LinkedIn:
linkedin.com/in/larryjmorris3/

Webpage: larryjmorris3.com


Name: Lori Adams

Pronouns: she/her/hers

Lori Adams has been working with national, regional, local and international nonprofit organizations for 30  years in the areas of operations, organizational development, and leader development. She is an ordained minister in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). Lori began working in institutional antiracism transformation in her own denomination beginning in 1995, co-leading the national work. Since then, she has served as a member of several antiracism transformation teams, partnered with Crossroads Antiracism Organizing & Training to train teams, and facilitated antiracism and cultural competency work across the life of several national organizations. Lori currently works on contract with the Crossroads staff and does some antiracism work with a few organizations; specifically in the area of white identity development and the internalization of white supremacy culture. She lives in Indianapolis, IN with her spouse, Patricia, with whom she has shared a home for 27 years.  Together, they parent four adult daughters and grandparent five grandkids. 

Areas of expertise related to Diversity/Equity/Inclusion:

Understanding systemic racism/oppression and ideological white supremacy; Antiracist White Racial Identity Development; antiracist/antioppressive organizational development.

Experience in: All of these competencies are listed. In addition, work with DEI committees to engage in the assessment of institutional structural and programmatic inequity to implement long-term organizational change.

Adjacent skills that serve organizations working on equity or justice: She has become adept at teaching/presentation, facilitating interactive workshops, and coaching over digital platforms

email: ladams30030@gmail.com


Name: Riana Shaw Robinson

Pronouns: she/her

Riana Shaw Robinson is an experienced changemaker and facilitator committed to community and capacity building, social justice, and organizational development. Riana has over 15 years of experience supporting coalitions and working with a variety of community stakeholders including non-profits, local government, and private sector businesses.

Riana is currently in a season of creation, working across communities and organizations to design and facilitate spaces that center on the needs, experiences, and gifts of women of color. She has honed her commitment to racial and social justice in non-profit, technology, and religious institutions. 

Riana recently served as the Associate Pastor of Formation at Oakland City Church where she spearheaded efforts to help the multi-ethnic community live more deeply into its anti-racist values. As the Minister of City Engagement, she expanded the church’s community partnerships and commitment to solidarity with marginalized communities in Oakland.

Riana holds a Master of Divinity from Pacific School of Religion and a B.A. in Ethnic Studies from Mills College.

Areas of expertise related to Diversity/Equity/Inclusion:

Riana brings a compassionate eye to the evaluation of DEI goals and priorities. She is able to examine existing systems, structures, procedures, and norms for consistency and alignment with stated goals.  

Riana worked in a variety of multi-ethnic spaces and established agreements and norms to recognize and mitigate power differentials. She created a customizable faith-rooted antiracist curriculum to build community and individual capacity for cultural humility and cross-culture dialogue…

Experience in: Riana is an experienced facilitator that has supported diverse groups toward values-based leadership, decision making, and planning…

Social media:

IG: @revshawrobinson
LinkedIn:
linkedin.com/in/riana-shaw-robinson-8475165b/


Name: Sima Savdharia

Pronouns: she/her/they/them

Sima Savdharia is a formally trained Mediator, Kingian Nonviolence trainer, Restorative Justice Practitioner, and Meditation teacher with a decade of experience working in the realm of conflict de-escalation. Her professional experiences include working as a classroom teacher, being a Mediator and Case Manager for SEEDS Community Resolution Center, and consulting for various organizations including Community Boards and Senior Disability Action. She currently hosts community circles as a Resident Advocate for The Northern CA Land Trust. She is also an independent contractor with The Ahimsa Collective where she facilitates RJC (Restorative Justice in Community) processes and supports the REALIZE program (an alternative approach to intimate partner violence) at Valley State Prison. She strives to bring a gentle candor to all that she does with an anti-colonial and pro-peoples analysis.

Areas of expertise related to Diversity/Equity/Inclusion:

Sima is a graduate of USF’s “Urban Education and Social Justice” M.A. program and The East Bay Meditation Center’s “Practice in Transformative Action” program. She is a Mediator and Healing Justice Practitioner with a decade of experience working in the realm of conflict de-escalation. Her professional experiences include consulting for various organizations including Community Boards and Senior Disability Action. She has designed  BIPOC specific training pilots and is passionate about addressing white supremacy culture pivots through story-telling.

Experience in: facilitation, training, coaching groups, strategic planning, teaching

Adjacent skills that serve organizations working on equity or justice: conflict de-escalation, theater of the oppressed, workshop design

Social media: 

FB: facebook.com/sima.savdharia
IG: @savdhariasima
Youtube: Sima Savdharia