Kyli Arford is a Collective Roots’ Health Educator. She was born and raised on the Big Island of Hawai’i and is from the town of Kailua-Kona. She now lives in East Palo Alto. She got her degree in Biology from Cal State Hayward. She spent time after college working on different farms with a focus in Sustainable Agriculture and Farmer’s Market systems. She is passionate about food and committed to improving the food system. Outside of work, Kyli enjoys trying new recipes, tending to her urban farm and spending time with her son, Kauila.
Neha Bazaj is a full-time member of the Silicon Valley HealthCorps (an AmeriCorps program). Upon graduating from UCLA in 2010 with a degree in Economics, she spent a summer at the UC Davis Organic Student Farm and then transitioned to a small citrus farm in Southern California. She spent the past year running a nutrition education program and exploring the economic challenges of being a small farmer. Neha is working to understand the economic challenges faced by all members of the food system, in order to create equitable and sustainable change at the community level.
Molly Burke joins Collective Roots as Nutrition Education Project Manager. After studying sociology and getting a Masters of Arts in Teaching from Occidental College in Los Angeles, Molly moved to Washington, DC to work with a nonprofit organization committed to ending childhood hunger in America. Originally from Oakland, CA, Molly is excited to be back in the Bay Area and is thrilled to help communities make the most out of their food resources through cooking and nutrition education. In herfree time, Molly enjoys visiting the beach, watching baseball games and singing along with the radio.
Anne Evans is Director of Nutrition and Garden Education. She has an M.S. in Nutrition and is a Registered Dietitian. She recently moved to California by way of New York where she spent the last 2 years working as the head nutritionist for an HIV/AIDS Adult Day Treatment Program. Anne has extensive experience in nutrition education, curriculum development, garden based learning, and community outreach. In Seattle, Washington Anne managed the implementation of a Farm-to-Cafeteria program at a local public school through coordination and collaboration of farmers, school administrators, kitchen personnel, parents and the community.
Kris Jensen is our executive director. Inspired by the Permaculture principles of earth care, people care and fair share Kris is excited to bring to Collective Roots his passion for social and environmental justice–especially with how it relates to our food system. Kris has spent his career working in the nonprofit sector trying to change the world in whatever way he could–beginning with a focus on job training with the developmentally disabled, moving on to working with older adults and the past several years as a highly successful fundraiser. Kris, a Cupertino resident, earned his BA from San Jose State University in Political Science and received his certification in Permaculture Design from the Regenerative Design Institute in Bolinas, California.
Adelaide Oneal is a Garden Educator and a full-time member of the Silicon Valley HealthCorps (an AmeriCorps program). Adelaide grew up in Alabama and moved the Bay Area to attend Stanford University. Over the last four years, she has explored food and agriculture issues in the classroom and through volunteer work with local nonprofits. Now, she’s happy to get her hands dirty, work with kids, and see how ideas from class play out in the real world. Outside of food-related activities, Adelaide enjoys reading, running, and practicing yoga.
Kristen Parks joins Collective Roots as an Evaluation Specialist. A California native, she was born in Santa Cruz and is thrilled to be back in the Bay Area. Kristen earned an M.A. in Political Science from UC San Diego where her research focused on immigration and public health. In her free time, she enjoys cooking, gardening, and exploring new places. She also teaches part-time at Cañada College in Redwood City.
Matilde Sanchez is the manager of the East Palo Alto Community Farmers Market. She was born in Mazatlan Sinaloa, Mexico. She is excited to belong to Collective Roots and have the opportunity to promote healthy food in our community and encourage us to return to the histories and cultures of our ancestors. Matilde keeps herself busy with community activism! She is a Promotora de Salud (Community Health Promoter), working in El Concilio de San Mateo and also part-time with Nuestra Casa. She coordinates a group of parents every Friday to discuss different topics related to health and community well-being, and they meet once a month with the mayor of East Palo Alto to brainstorm solutions to community problems.
Eron Truran is the Director of Programs for Collective Roots. Eron worked for many years on organic farms and as a teacher and coordinator for environmental and educational non-profit organizations. Eron studied Environmental Education at both Hampshire College and earned an M.S. in Environmental Studies at Antioch New England Graduate School. Her travels and experiences learning about cultures, food, and farming in Europe, India, the Philippines, Mexico and Thailand greatly influence her views on food security, nutrition, community and education. She is inspired by growing food, establishing community relationships and getting people excited about being in the garden.
Sheila Vreeburg brings 30 years of experience as a bookkeeper and office manager. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Art, Magna Cum Laude, from Notre Dame de Namur University, and has experience working with organizations both large and small.
Nicole Wires is Manager of Community Initiatives for Collective Roots. A graduate of Stanford University, Nicole studied Earth Systems, an inter-disciplinary environmental science program, and created an emphasis on sustainable agriculture and food justice. Nicole previously worked on issues of international food security, spending time abroad in Ecuador, Tanzania, and Burkina Faso. Born and raised in Boulder, Colorado, she loves the west, the mountains, backpacking, climbing, biking, gardening and being outside.