California Environmental Justice Alliance

Building Healthy Communities from the Ground up

Staff

Tiffany Eng

Interim Co-Director, Programs

Read Tiffany’s bio
Contact Tiffany at: tiffany [at] caleja.org

Mabel Tsang

Interim Co-Director, Political

Read Mabel’s bio
Contact Mabel at: mabel [at] caleja.org

Denise Forrest

Interim Co-Director, Development

Read Denise’s bio
Contact Denise: denise [at] caleja.org

Raquel Mason

Policy Manager

Read Raquel’s bio
Contact Raquel at raquel [at] caleja.org

Brittny Anya

Operations Manager

Read Brittny’s bio
Contact Brittny at: brittny [at] caleja.org

Isa Flores-Jones

Communications Manager

Read Isa’s bio
Contact Isa at: isa [at] caleja.org

Alexis Sutterman

Energy Equity Program Manager

Read Alexis’ bio
Contact Alexis at: alexis [at] caleja.org

Tyler Valdes

SOMAH Program Manager

Read Tylers’ bio
Contact Tyler at: tyler [at] caleja.org

Leonela Leon

Policy & Political Program Associate

Read Leonela’s bio
Contact Leonela at: leonela [at] caleja.org

Valeria Paredes

Development Associate

Read Valeria’s bio
Contact Valeria at: valeria [at] caleja.org

Neena Mohan

Grant Writer

Read Neena’s bio
Contact Neena at: grants [at] caleja.org

Ari Eisenstadt

Regenerate California Campaign Manager

Read Ari’s bio

Read Ari’s bio
Contact Ari at: ari [at] caleja.org

Tiffany Eng, Interim Co-Director-Programs (she/they)


Tiffany Eng was born and raised in Oakland, California. She is a community organizer and policy advocate who has worked alongside youth and families in California for over twenty years. As an Interim Co-Director who oversees CEJA’s Green Zones, Energy Equity, and Climate Justice programs, she supports the groundbreaking work that CEJA members are leading to transform polluted and divested neighborhoods into healthy and vibrant communities. Tiffany first joined CEJA in 2016 as CEJA’s Green Zones Program Manager, where she guided the alliance’s advocacy and implementation work on the Transformative Climate Communities (TCC) program and SB 1000 (Leyva, 2016). She has co-authored a number of CEJA’s Green Zones reports, including the SB 1000 Implementation Toolkit in partnership with PlaceWorks Inc., CalEnviroScreen: A Critical Tool for Achieving Environmental Justice in California (2018), Rethinking Local Control: Placing Environmental Justice and Civil Rights at the Heart of Land Use Decision-Making (2020), and the Environmental and Housing Justice Platform.

Prior to her time at CEJA, Tiffany served as a youth organizer, a policy director, and a Co-Director at AYPAL: Building API Community Power. At AYPAL, she supported the leadership development and community organizing capacity of Asian and Pacific Islander youth in Oakland, working with young leaders and coalition partners to win community-led campaigns for education justice and racial justice. Tiffany has also worked with the Asian Pacific Environmental Network, PolicyLink, Community Youth Center–San Francisco, Community Bridges Beacon, and the Department of City and Regional Planning at UC Berkeley.

Tiffany earned a master’s degree in City and Regional Planning from the University of California, Berkeley, and holds dual degrees in Art and Asian American Studies from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). She received a Monarch Leadership Award from the Pacific Asian American Women Bay Area Coalition (PAWBAC) in 2014, graduated from the Dr. Beatriz María Solís Policy Institute program in 2011, and completed the Rockwood Leadership Institute’s California Leaders of Color fellowship program in 2011.  

Contact Tiffany: tiffany [at] caleja.org

Mabel Tsang, Interim Co-Director-Political (she/they)


As Interim Co-Director-Political for CEJA and CEJA Action, I work to build the political power, self-governance and self-determination of EJ communities and communities of color burdened by health, economic and environmental impacts. I build the bridges of accountability between California’s elected leaders and voters, manage ballot measure campaigns, and expand democratic participation for environmental, racial and social justice by centering and including members of our community who have been historically barred from voting. I’ve successfully led the campaign to beat down Proposition 70 which preserved critical public funds to fight climate change.

I became an organizer because of my mom. I found myself in the social justice movement in hopes of making the world a better place for her and others like her. Despite health problems ranging from heart disease to asthma my mother worked as a waitress and a care-taker which brought me into organizing at United Food and Commercial Workers alongside Walmart workers with Organization United for Respect at Walmart, for retail workers’ rights, human dignity and respect in one of the largest commercial global polluters. This brought me to work for San Francisco Rising, an alliance of six Asian, Black, Latinx grassroots working-class immigrant, youth, and people of color base-building organizations across San Francisco, to build the political power to elect progressive candidates and pass bold ballot measures for necessary resources and changes in our community when elected officials would not or could not. I brought my experiences to Asian Pacific Environmental Network a member of CEJA to lead a campaign to contact 30,000 voters, the largest Asian Pacific American direct voter contact efforts in California. I carry these invaluable lessons forward into CEJA’s Civic Engagement and Electoral programs to build the infrastructure of political power and decision making for the future we are building today.

Outside of electoral politics and organizing, I am a current fellow in LeaderSpring’s LEADStrong women of color cohort. I can be found meditating and teaching yoga, taking trips to some of the most beautiful places, and writing books for children of color so they can see themselves in this world.

Contact Mabel: mabel [at] caleja.org

Denise Forrest, Interim Co-Director-Development (she/her)

As Interim Co-Director – Development, I manage and support diverse aspects of CEJA’s development work with the goal of nurturing the sustainable growth of CEJA’s annual budget. I am responsible for the day-to-day direction of the grants and individual donor programs, and play an invested role in helping to manage CEJA’s transition to its next phase of executive leadership.

I am an antiracist feminist who comes to this work with a sincere belief in the power of grassroots community. In the ongoing human project to liberate all peoples, my contribution has largely been in grassroots EJ, food justice, and LGBTQ+ community organizing; with complementary academic training in gender/race/economic theory, politics of water justice, and social finance.

I am originally from Philadelphia where I earned Master’s degrees from the University of Pennsylvania in Environmental Policy and Nonprofit Leadership. In my spare time I enjoy hanging out with my brilliant partner Sean, reading everything from philosophy to pulp romance, playing D&D and video games, and snuggling my roommate’s dog, Starla.

Contact Denise: denise [at] caleja.org

Raquel Mason, Policy Manager  (she/her)


As Policy Manager, Raquel works with CEJA members and partners to develop and implement legislative and budget strategies required for the transformational policies our communities require.

Most recently, Raquel worked in the State Assembly where she worked on a variety of bills and  issue areas including natural resources. As an Assembly Fellow, Raquel had the opportunity to staff AB 1232 (Gloria), a CEJA priority bill that sought to combat any displacement impacts associated with the Low-Income Weatherization Program (LIWP). Before transitioning to Sacramento, Raquel worked at CEJA member organization, Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles (PSR-LA).

With PSR-LA, Raquel she supported the Air and Climate Justice work and the Toxics program. In this work, she coordinated the Californians for a Healthy and Green Economy (CHANGE) coalition by supporting its membership through a re-grounding process and affirming the coalition’s commitment to community-led work. 

In 2017, Raquel participated in the Dr. Beatriz María Solís Policy Institute where she and the team of CEJA advocates learned the state policy process first-hand and passed AB 523 (Reyes). In her free time, she enjoys reading, dancing, and indulging her sweet tooth.  

Contact Raquel: raquel [at] caleja.org

Brittny Anya, Operations Manager (she/her)


I manage the operations for the amazing work CEJA does across the state. I enjoy managing operational systems because it is the engine that keeps CEJA running. I like exploring various productivity tools and to-do lists to maximize and increase our productivity. I’m passionate about building resilient communities that are most impacted by systematic injustices that plague our world. I came to CEJA because the folks at this organization work tirelessly to promote environmental awareness to improve the health of our communities.

Before joining CEJA, I did some community organizing around social justice during my time at Fresno State with Black Students United and through my sorority Alpha Kappa Alpha. Additionally, I’ve spent a lot of time working in the social work field with youth and families providing direct services, program management, and administrative support.

During my free time, I can be found listening to music. I love music especially anything from 90’s R&B, Hip Hop, and Jazz. Music keeps me centered and energized to get through the days whether I’m feeling up or down. When the weather permits, I like to spend time at the beach on the sand listening and watching the waves because it’s so calming.

To sum up my life, I would say that I am a continuous learner with a desire to continually gain new knowledge for self-improvement and make positive impacts on the world.

Contact Brittny: brittny [at] caleja.org

Isa Flores-Jones, Communications Manager (she/her)

As Communications Manager, Isa works with CEJA members and partners to amplify local and regional struggles through state-wide media campaigns.

Originally from Sacramento, Isa completed her B.A in History and Literature from Harvard College, where her work with the fossil fuel divestment campaign brought her into coordination with local community-led cooperative finance such as the Ujima Project. As a 350.org Climate Justice Fellow Isa joined a cohort of youth organizing fellows to develop their strategic organizing skills. From fending off InfoWars reporters to knocking doors to conducting training webinars for hundreds of new organizers, Isa is committed to the practice and processes of equitable, just, and transformative storytelling.

Isa developed her communications and research skills through time contributing to national press outreach with the Sunrise Movement Press team and as a research fellow to Latin American corporate accountability watchdog PODER. She believes in the power of community-controlled resources and the abolition of carceral systems. In her free time she enjoys cooking for friends and writing short fiction.

Contact Isa: isa [at] caleja.org

Alexis Sutterman, Energy Equity Program Manager (she/they)

As the Energy Equity Program Manager, Alexis supports a Just Energy Transition to a system that is reliable, healthy, affordable, just, and powered by 100% clean and renewable energy. Alexis also works as a coordinator between CEJA’s committees on integrative work that models the Just Transition and Just Recovery frameworks. She is honored to be a part of a movement aiming to stop the bad, build the new, and change the rules.

Before arriving at CEJA as a fellow in August of 2019, Alexis was studying political science and broadcast journalism at Chapman University. During this time, she was active in local political advocacy and civic engagement through her roles as president of Chapman University Young Democrats and fellow for NextGen California. On campus, she registered students to vote, led workshops, volunteered on campaigns, and organized campus-wide events including a “Rock the Vote” concert and a walkout against gun violence. 

In addition to local advocacy, Alexis is extremely interested in pursuing systems change world-wide and has conducted undergraduate research on international issues at Chapman’s Earl Babbie Research Center. She supported two professors on their research on development assistance in South Sudan and indigenous environmental campaigns in Colombia. Alexis has also travelled to Israel/Palestine as a member of the Olive Tree Initiative organization to practice international conflict analysis and resolution. Inspired by this trip, she wrote her senior thesis on the humanitarian and political crisis in Gaza, and used decolonial frameworks to envision a just resolution. 

Alexis is committed to the Zapatista belief that otro mundo es posible. She is motivated by decolonial scholarship, activism, and leadership emerging from within environmental justice communities across California and the world. And she is dedicated to co-creating a world where every person can thrive. This means restoring wilderness and biodiversity, repairing and deepening relationships between ourselves and the earth, and exploring our multitudes. In her free time, Alexis enjoys reading too much into the subtext of political and existential memes. She also loves journaling, hiking, and watching movies. 

Contact Alexis: alexis [at] caleja.org

Tyler Valdes, SOMAH Program Manager (he/him)

As the Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing (SOMAH) Program Manager, Tyler works with CEJA members and partners to ensure environmental justice communities engage with and directly benefit from the SOMAH program.

Tyler is excited to elevate SOMAH as he believes it is a critical step toward addressing California’s solar segregation by putting renewable energy right where it’s needed the most – on the rooftops of working class tenants. Before joining CEJA, Tyler worked with nonprofits and universities to advance community resilience by educating the next generation of environmental leaders and promoting the economic empowerment of underserved communities through green workforce development.

Originally from the Inland Empire, Tyler is a first-generation college graduate who earned his bachelor’s degree in Earth System Science from UC Irvine and his master’s degree in Climate Science and Policy from Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego. In his free time, Tyler enjoys going to concerts, trying new foods with his partner, and chilling with friends and family.

Contact Tyler at tyler [at] caleja.org.

Leonela Leon, Policy and Political Program Associate (she/her)

As CEJA’s Policy and Political Associate, Leonela supports both CEJA’s civic engagement efforts to build the political power of EJ communities and CEJA’s legislative advocacy to fight for critical EJ policies at the state level.

Leonela graduated from UC Berkeley in 2021 with a B.S. in Society & Environment and minors in Public Policy and Journalism. She studied the intersection of race, class, gender and the environment, as well as public policy and media as tools for achieving justice. Outside of the classroom, she co-led the ASUC Department of Unsustainable Partnerships’ Pour Out Pepsi campaign to pressure UCB to end its partnership with PepsiCo. She was also a member of the Students of Color Environmental Collective (SCEC) where she was a lead organizer of SCECon21, a national conference that re-centers the environmental narrative around justice and BIPOC voices. Leonela is a proud recipient of the Chancellor’s Advisory Committee on Sustainability’s 2021 Sustainability Award for her student organizing and commitment to growing the space for BIPOC environmentalists on campus.

In her free time, you can find her thrift shopping or spending time with her many pets.

Contact Leonela at leonela [at] caleja.org

Valeria Paredes, Development Associate (she/her)

 Valeria received a dual bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies and Economics and spent much of her undergraduate career working for student retention initiatives such as the American Indian Resource Center and the Chicanx/Latinx Resource Center with the goal to foster community among first generation students of color.

She coordinated the People of Color Sustainability Collective where she contributed to grant proposals, presented to UC administrators about the goals of the collective and engaged students, faculty and community members in programming. PoC

SC designed educational workshops and facilitated reflective spaces to center BIPOC voices, explore environmental justice topics in the U.S. and global South, and highlight resilience in communities that challenged dominant narratives of sustainability.

She had the opportunity to take service-learning trips to cities such as Seattle, WA and New Orleans, LA to learn about local organizing efforts to combat displacement, food insecurity and economic inequality. With a passion for environmental economics and policy, Valeria supported and encouraged peers to think through resource management and city planning challenges.

Most recently, Valeria was a food and agriculture fellow at Friends of the Earth where she co-authored a bee-friendly retailer scorecard and toxicity analysis on conventional pesticides to promote pollinator and frontline worker health in our food system. She recently found a work home at CEJA as the new Development Associate and is excited to contribute to the growing, statewide EJ movement. 

Valeria grew up in Southeast LA county and enjoys drinking coffee and tea, hiking, going to the swapmeet and spending time with her younger siblings, David and Victoria. She is always interested in learning about critical race and ethnic studies, food sovereignty and reproductive justice as well, which are all connected to environmental justice!

Contact Valeria at valeria [at] caleja.org

Neena Mohan, Grant Writer (they/she/he)

As CEJA’s Grant Writer, I help secure critical funding to support our various programmatic and electoral efforts towards environmental justice. My tenure at CEJA has included serving as the Climate Justice Program Manager and Climate and Air Campaign Manager, ensuring the needs and experiences of environmental justice communities are uplifted and are used to shape California’s climate policies. I have also served on the AB 32 Environmental Justice Advisory Committee (EJAC) to the California Air Resources Board (CARB) and on the California Energy Commission’s (CEC) Clean Transportation Advisory Committee. My hope is that together we can lead the way in creating an equitable and just transition that addresses historical and current harms to marginalized communities, while also mitigating the impacts of climate change on our planet and its inhabitants.

My perspective is in part shaped by my experiences growing up in a South Asian immigrant family in a small town in the High Desert/Inland Valley of Southern California (the ancestral home and unceded territory of the Yuhaviatam / Maarenga’yam people). As a graduate of UC Berkeley with Bachelors of Science degrees in Environmental Sciences and in Conservation & Resources Studies, and a minor in LGBT Studies, I am also shaped by student organizing experiences in queer/trans people of color and environmental justice spaces. I was also the Conference Manager for the first ever Student of Color Environmental Conference at the university level in the state. During my undergraduate years, I had the opportunity to work with Earthjustice and National Parks Conservation Association to uplift diverse voices and share critical narratives. I gained exposure to the world of state policy as a Summer Associate on the Environmental Equity team at the Greenlining Institute, and was also a fellow at Alameda County’s Office of Sustainability, where I worked on climate adaptation, resilience, and equity issues in local government. In my free time, I like to create and give workshops on environmental and climate justice issues, and have done so for various conferences, retreats, and trainings.

Outside of work, you can find me learning electric guitar, supporting other social justice movements, hiking, and practicing mindfulness & meditation. I also enjoy exploring various decolonial, ecological, feminist and queer of color theories, and am on a journey of (re)discovering and (re)defining my relationship to land, institutions, other beings, and myself. My guiding light is the interconnectedness of all things, and I hope my efforts in this work help bring about more healing, freedom, and love in these connections.

Contact Neena at: grants [at] caleja.org

Ari Eisenstadt, Regenerate California Campaign Manager (he/him)

As the Campaign Manager for the Regenerate California campaign, Ari works with CEJA member organizations to build community power towards shutting down gas-fired power plants. Ari grew up in Brooklyn, NY, with his parents, who are both teachers, and his brother, Ben. He was raised in a Unitarian Universalist congregation, which helped instill in him the energy to fight for justice and freedom for all peoples.

Ari received his undergraduate degree in geology and master’s degree in chemical oceanography from the University of Rochester in upstate New York. His research focused on measuring the amount of methane and carbon dioxide dissolved in the waters of the Great Lakes, in order to more accurately understand freshwater contribution to atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations. During graduate school, Ari spent a year as a corps member with City Year New York, supporting and advocating for youth in a Brooklyn public school. This experience informs Ari’s drive to end exploitation in non-profits and to bring trauma-informed practices to educational spaces.

Ari joined CEJA in 2021 after moving to California from Washington, DC. In DC, Ari worked for the Audubon Naturalist Society (ANS) as the DC Conservation Advocate. In this role, he led coalitions and campaigns to fight for clean water, air, and equitable climate policies for DC residents. His work with the kind and compassionate people at ANS and throughout DC supported him in learning how to confidently disrupt unjust systems.

Ari is particularly passionate about fighting for environmental justice in a way that works to heal the generational trauma caused by colonialism and white supremacy. In his free time, he loves to do woodworking, play guitar, ukulele, and flute, rock climb, play rugby and soccer, draw, and hang out with his partner and cat. Ari is a proud transgender person, and uses the pronouns he/him/his. Ari lives in the LA area.

Contact Ari at ari [at] caleja.org