Justin August Data and Research Analyst
Justin is a veteran teacher with time spent in the classroom on both coasts. After attaining a Master's in Education from the University of Pennsylvania he taught in West Philadelphia for 4 years in a high-stakes turnaround environment. Focused on not only the academic but also the social and emotional needs of his students he used data to help him meet the growing edges of not only his students but his own teach practices. After re-relocating to the West Coast he taught in an arts-integrated school, focusing on internalized bias work and teacher mentorship outside of the classroom. He brings with him the hands on knowledge of a decade in the classroom and data analysis skills via self-study and the General Assembly Data Science Immersive program. He spends all of his time not doing data gathering and analysis for Artspiration with his daughter in and around their home in Oakland.
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Aimee Espiritu Arts Equity Specialist
Aimee Espiritu, M. Ed. launched Espiritu Consulting in October 2017 rooted in her satiable quality to connect things. This process has been a lifelong pursuit of insight to bring people closer to something: to each other, to a place, a history, to the future, and to purpose. Raised academically in Industrial Design, she gained the means to solve problems with a product design lens. During her years in public education, she began grasping the principle of bringing people into the center of inquiry. Ultimately, her drive to use creativity as a tool for re-imagining how organizations, structures and people can enhance their social impact has fortified her design acumen of human-centered interaction. She brings 14 years of management in nonprofits, school districts, museums, foundations and government institutions. All these experiences have ignited her over 2 decades - committing herself to the work as a strategist / organizational designer / creative consultant. Aimee's consulting practice lives at the intersection of community development, arts & culture, racial equity, strategy and thought-partnership.
Katherine Silva Spanish Bilingual Arts Integration Specialist
Kati Silva, MA ILS is a circle keeper, a scholar-practitioner, and an educator bridging social justice and spiritual transformation. Born and raised in the territory that is known today as San Jose, Costa Rica, she worked as a Bodywork Practitioner and a Yoga and Somatics Educator. As a woman of color with Afro-Meztiza lineages raging from Nicaragua to Europe and Huetar and Chorotega heritages, Kati is committed to cross-cultural liberatory praxis that reflects her deep respect and service to Mother Earth, as well as to Radical Collective Transformation. Currently living in occupied Tamien Ohlone land, San Francisco Bay Area, she serves as a Popular Educator and Leadership Development Coordinator, integrating transformative and restorative practices within a collective of community leaders in the neighborhood of Mayfair in East San Jose. Kati has had the privilege of higher education, holding a Master’s Degree in Women, Gender, Spirituality, and Social Justice from the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco. Her inquiries are centered in embodiment, Indigenous and experiential ways of knowing, Abuelita wisdom, foodways, the arts, eco-feminism, and community resilience.
Sofia Fojas is a leader for cultural equity and social justice in the arts. A classroom music teacher and high school music director for 20 years, she taught orchestra, band, IB Music, and mariachi. In 2008, Ms. Fojas was the only K-12 teacher in the first class (the OGs!) of Multicultural Arts Leadership Initiative in San Jose. In the last 6 years, she has served as a district arts leader in San Francisco and Elk Grove school districts.
She has performed with Mariachi Cali, Mariachi Atzlan and as a guest in a performance with Mariachi Sol de Mexico. She performed with Los Cenzontles and recorded with them on an album of the Chieftans. She has played in backup orchestras behind Natalie Cole, Dionne Warwick, Andy Williams, Smokey Robinson, and Johnny Mathis