Elizabeth Yeampierre is a internationally recognized Puerto Rican attorney and environmental and climate justice leader of African and Indigenous ancestry born and raised in New York City. A national leader in climate justice movement, Elizabeth is the co-chair of the Climate Justice Alliance. She is Executive Director of UPROSE, Brooklyn's oldest Latino community based organization. Her award winning vision for an inter-generational, multi-cultural and community led organization is the driving force behind UPROSE. She is a long-time advocate and trailblazer for community organizing around just, sustainable development, environmental justice and community-led climate adaptation and community resiliency in Sunset Park. Prior to assuming the Executive Director position at UPROSE, Ms. Yeampierre was the Director of Legal Education and Training at the Puerto Rican Legal Defense Fund, Director of Legal Services for the American Indian law Alliance and Dean of Puerto Rican Student Affairs at Yale University. She holds a BA from Fordham University, a law degree from Northeastern University.
Ting Ting Fu
Climate Justice Organizer
Ting Ting Fu was born in the Fujian Province of China and raised in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. Since the age of 13, Ting Ting has been active with UPROSE. She started as a summer intern and transitioned to being a Youth Organizer. Throughout the years, she has reached out to Sunset Park community on current campaigns that UPROSE has been involved in. She went away to college studying Social Science and moved back to New York to be with her family again. Recently, she was part of a research group reaching out to the community members who maybe have been involved in the clean up activities, as a result of Super Storm Sandy. In 2015, Ting Ting joined UPROSE as a Climate Justice Organizer offering climate adaptation and resilience education to the community as a part of the work for the Climate Justice Center in UPROSE. She has also has been supporting the youth with the Real Roots campaign, an organic and natural self-care products campaign. She has facilitates youth teach-ins, and community events educating the community on Climate Justice, Environmental Justice and UPROSE's Anti Displacement Work.
"Lourdes Pérez-Medina is the Climate Justice Policy and Programs Coordinator at UPROSE. She was born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Before joining the team, she was an ANHD|Morgan Stanley Community Planning Fellow at the Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition where she worked on the initial planning and development stages of a Community Land Trust in the North Bronx. Lourdes also worked at the Proyecto ENLACE del Caño Martín Peña in San Juan, Puerto Rico as an infrastructure assistant. She worked on the design and development of home rehabilitation, safety and sustainability guidelines for community residents among other Environmental Justice projects. She holds an MS in City and Regional Planning from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn and a BA in Architecture from the Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico."
Jason was born and raised in Sunset Park and attends Borough of Manhattan Community College. He joined UPROSE in July 2014 at our At the Table Summer Leadership Institute. The summer before the People's Climate March, Jason played an instrumental role in organizing for both the People's Climate March and the 4th NYC Climate Justice Youth Summit. He is the recipient for the Outstanding Leadership Award given by the Working Families Party for organizing his community and participating in the Peoples Climate March. Jason often exercises leadership by taking initiative. Being an organizer at heart, Jason is always engaging community. Whether he is reaching out to the community or being a part of the Sunset Park Climate Justice Community Resiliency Center as a block captain, he enjoys being on the ground and taking on leadership.
Born and raised in Caracas, Venezuela, Arianna moved to Miami as a teenager and completed her Bachelor’s in Anthropology/Sociology and Geography at Florida International University. For her Senior Honor’s thesis, she designed and conducted a 2 year long community based research project on the effects of gentrification for residents of Sweetwater (aka “Little Managua”), a working class immigrant neighborhood in Miami threatened by rapid real-estate development. This project was awarded the Honors College Dean’s Junior Research award. Prior to joining UPROSE, Arianna worked in the educational group travel field. She is passionate about fighting displacement and preserving diverse urban spaces for working people. Arianna joined the UPROSE team in 2019, shortly after moving to Sunset Park and falling in love with her newly adopted home.
Nyiesha Mallett is an 18 year old artist, and Climate justice Youth leader. Nyiesha was born and raised in Brooklyn New York, and grew up in a Carribean household. Her mother was born on the island of Grenada, so she understands the massive effect that climate change has on carribean countries of color like Puerto Rico and Grenada who contribute the least to climate change but experience the brunt of the crisis. Nyiesha Joined UPROSE in 2015 at the age of 14 not knowing anything climate change but rose to leadership. In 2017 she spoke at the People's Climate March Rally. Nyiesha recently graduated Highschool at Medgar Evers Highschool, and has her Associates degree in Bio. She will be attending Cooper Union School of Art this coming fall.
Chelsea is a 19 year old artist for those in need of creative representation. She has recently joined the uprose team as a Youth Organizer. She is using her artistic abilities to shed light on the massive impact that hurricane Maria has had on thousands of Puerto Ricans on the island. Outside of Uprose she mainly works on projects that will help to build the communities that she embraces as her own, including working with children of color and food-based volunteer projects around the city.
Shahela was born in South Asia, Bangladesh and came to the U.S. when she was 3 years old. Having spent her younger years in California, she spent most of her life in Queens, New York. Shahela has been involved in activism since she was 14 years old, studying English Literature with a concentration on Race, Ethnicity, and Class Studies. She received her Master’s degree from NYU in Environmental Conservation Education, focusing her thesis on Food Sovereignty, comparing agricultural practices in Cuba and the U.S. Having originated from a country which scientists predict will be underwater in the future, the ramifications of climate change is a real one for her. She has a Permaculture Design Certification from the Center for Bioregional Living and utilizes this to envision regenerative ecosystems as a solution to the challenges we are facing today.
Energy Democracy Coordinator
Summer was born and raised in Southern Maryland. From a young age, Summer has been inspired by environmental threats and climate change. She came to New York City in 2012 to attend New York University, where she earned her bachelor's in Environmental Science and developed her interest and passion for environmental justice issues. In 2019, Summer completed her Master's of Science in Sustainable Environmental Systems at Pratt Institute. Prior to UPROSE, Summer worked as an Environmental Defense Fund Climate Corps fellow for the City of Austin, Parks and Recreation Department, where she developed a planning framework and resource toolkit for resilience hubs (emergency shelters with resilient off-grid power supply). Summer is adamant about a clean energy future and innovative climate resilient planning.
Environmental Justice Fellow
He is a teacher, social justice activist,and environmental scientist who recently graduated with an M.S. in Environmental Science from Yale University. He is passionate about environmental education, community-driven climate adaptation, and creative science communication that reaches diverse and underserved populations. A. J. is deeply interested in applying his urban ecology and climate resilience research to the nexus of environmental justice for people of color, recent immigrants, the historically enslaved or colonized, and indigenous peoples. Before his teaching career, A. J. received his B.A. from Columbia University with a Major in Psychology (researching environmental decision making) and Political Philosophy. He also attained an M.A. in Teaching Science from Relay Graduate School of Education concurrently during his first two years of teaching. As a longtime resident of Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, A. J. is incredibly excited to bring his skills to the mission of UPROSE and looks forward to getting to know the people of Sunset Park this summer!
Brian Gonzalez was born and raised in the Sunset Park neighborhood of Brooklyn. He was introduced to UPROSE in 2009 at the age of 17. Without any prior knowledge of the fact that his community is home to some of the worst environmental burdens in New York City, Brian realized that there was an immediate injustice occurring around him and it would require citywide activism to address. He sought out both long and short term solutions to helping not only his community members but others in the same circumstance. Brian will finish his degree and has chosen to pursue a graduates degree. He fundamentally believes in finding creative ways to inform others about environmental justice and climate change and has taken on song writing and composition as a means to organize and unite.