La'Tasha D. Mayes, MSPPM is a nationally recognized leader in the field of reproductive justice, human rights, and leadership development for women and girls of color. She's the founder and executive director of New Voices for Reproductive Justice, a multi-state organization dedicated to the health and well-being of Black women and girls headquartered in Pittsburgh with offices in Philadelphia and Cleveland. La'Tasha is a passionate reproductive justice activist, native of West Philadelphia and believes in the indefatigable spirit of women. She spoke with Kim and Natalie about the challenges of protecting reproductive rights in the current political climate and the need for intersectionality. To learn more about La'Tasha, visit latashadmayes.com and follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @duxfemfac.
As Deputy Chief of Special Initiatives in the Office of Mayor Bill Peduto, Betty Cruz led the strategic development of numerous mayoral priorities in the City of Pittsburgh including Welcoming Pittsburgh, a comprehensive plan to build a more welcoming experience for the city’s growing immigrant community, and Live Well, a wellness agenda focused on increasing access to affordable healthcare and expanding participation in meals programming for youth. In 2016, she launched Change Agency, a social enterprise to elevate civic initiatives including implementation of a countywide community-designed immigrant integration plan that exists independent of government. Originally from Miami, Betty is the daughter of Cuban refugees and knows first-hand the challenges immigrants face seeking to establish a better tomorrow. She is a first-generation college graduate and was recently selected as one 40 attendees to the Next City’s 2017 Vanguard conference in Montreal. Betty talked to us about her work helping immigrants feel more welcome in Pittsburgh, made more daunting by the 2016 presidential election.
Liana Maneese is an entrepreneur and activist born in Brazil and raised in Pittsburgh. She's co-founder and CEO of The Good Peoples Group, an organization that specializes in creative and cultural problem-solving through identity navigation, building and honoring resilience and dynamic team building. Through the Good Peoples Group, Maneese and her team work toward having constructive conversations focused on healing racial divides.
sarah huny young is a tech founder, creative director, artist, and photographer from New York City. Her grant-winning project, AMERICAN WOMAN, is a multimedia portrait and documentary series about Black American women. huny loves big hair, red lipstick, and Ghostface and considers herself equal parts music head, whiskey enthusiast, awesome mom and geek on fleek. huny talked to us about the American Woman project, and what it's like being a black female developer in a field of mostly white guys. Find her on Twitter at @huny and on Instagram at @hunyrocks. Her portfolio of work is at supremeclientele.co/
Dr. Vonda Wright is an orthopedic surgeon, author, speaker and change-maker. She is one of only a few female orthopedic surgeons in the country and specializes in sports medicine and in powerful and growing population of athletes over 40. She is the CEO and Founder of Women’s Health Conversations, a health education and innovation company and a millennial-focused B2C health innovations platform, HOT for your health. Follow her on Twitter & Facebook @DrVondaWright or Follow her on Twitter & Facebook @DrVondaWright orwww.drvondawright.com Vonda joined us to talk about her mission to keep women and men mobile into their older years (hint: it's not as hard as you think it is!)
Tara Sherry Torres, founder of Cafe con Leche, is a Brooklyn girl who fell in love with Pittsburgh 10 years ago. She is a dynamic communicator and creative connector who believes in the power of culture and relationships. Tara talked with us about her work with Pittsburgh's small but growing Latino population. "The challenge for Latinos in Pittsburgh is we don't have a historical reference," as in other cities. In her free time you can find Tara on a beach, sipping wine and dreaming big. Find her on Twitter: @taralajefa and @CafeLechePGH or visit Cafe Con Leche's website.
Kilolo Luckett is an art historian, cultural producer and writer. She created By Any Means, an art series that engages directly with leading artists, curators, writers and cultural consumers to broaden the scope and understanding of contemporary art influenced by Black culture. Kilolo is currently writing an authorized biography on Naomi Sims, one of the first Black supermodels. When she brings visiting artists to Pittsburgh, she makes a point to take them to parts of the city most visitors don't see, Kilolo said. "I want folks to be able to write about black and brown people that are doing awesome things in Pittsburgh." You can follow Kilolo on Instagram @kilololuckett. Photo of Kilolo by Christopher Testani
Food activist Leah Lizarondo of 412 Food Rescue joins Kim and Natalie to talk about what it was like building an army of volunteers to help deliver discarded food to people in need.