About The Team
Gregory A. Cendana,
President & Co-Founder
Dancer, Strategist and Entrepreneur Gregory Cendana is President and co-founder of Can’t Stop! Won’t Stop! Consulting, Chief Creative Officer of Greg Dances and co-founder of The People’s Collective for Justice and Liberation. He was the first openly gay and youngest-ever Executive Director of the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance and Institute for Asian Pacific American Leadership & Advancement. Gregory was also first openly gay Chair of the National Council of Asian Pacific Americans, co-founder of the diversity initiative Inclusv, and serves on the board of directors for United We Dream as Treasurer and 18 Million Rising as Chair. He co-authored Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) Behind Bars: Exposing the School to Prison to Deportation Pipeline, a first of its kind report on the impact of mass incarceration and mass criminalization in the AAPI community. Gregory was President of the United States Student Association (USSA), where he played an integral role in the passage of the Student Aid & Fiscal Responsibility Act and Healthcare and Education Reconciliation Act.
Gregory is also a graduate of the Rockwood Leadership Institute, the Management Center's Managing to Change the World, the Midwest Academy’s Organizing for Social Change, Training for Change’s Training of Trainers, Spitfire’s Executive Training Program, Center for Story Based Strategy’s Advanced Training and re:power's Political Training Program. Prior to his current role on the Board of Pharmacy, Washington D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser also appointed him to serve on the Commission on Asian and Pacific Islander Affairs after he served a two year term on the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Advisory Committee under the leadership of Mayor Vince Gray. Gregory also co-founded the Washington Highlands Civic Association and served as its Vice President. He has been named one of Washington DC's most influential 40-and-under young leaders, one of the 30 Most Influential Asian Americans Under 30, 40 Influential Asian Americans in Washington, DC’s Inaugural Power 30 Under 30™ Award Recipients and the "Future of DC Politics". In his spare time, Gregory enjoys singing karaoke, choreographing dances and trying new recipes.
Follow him on Twitter and Instagram: @GregoryCendana and TikTok: @GregDances
Jessica was born in Guam and raised In California. She has spent the last 10 years working in the Labor and Nonprofit sectors in various administrative and operations roles. Most recently she led a statewide administrative team that organized logistics for 6 strikes with 17 simultaneous picket lines, budgets as large as $1 million, and crowds as big as 53,000. As the CSWS Consulting team grows, she is excited to join as the Operations Manager. In her free time you can find her tending to her plants or going for runs.
Nicole was born and raised in California. She is a daughter of immigrants and a proud Filipino. Nicole’s life goal is to instill mindfulness, in not only herself but to everyone she meets. She is influential that no matter race, religion, sexuality or where you come from, we all stand together. In Nicole’s down time she loves to cook and create art, whether that being a self taught makeup artist or styling clothing outfits.
James is honored and proud to be a CSWS Human Rights Intern. A third generation Chinese American born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, he now lives in NYC. He was first inspired by Gregory Cendana in March 2020, when he viewed "A TownHall on Anti-Asian Racism: Race, Struggle and Solidarity in the Time of A Global Pandemic", in which Gregory was a co-facilitator and co-host. Shortly after that, James took and graduated from the University for Justice and Liberation, an intensive social justice and political education training course which included Gregory and fellow organizer Dr. DJ Kuttin Kandi as part of the facilitation core. His goal is to work to support CSWS’s vision to center the voices of marginalized and oppressed communities in creating alternative futures of liberation for us all. He is grateful for the role his partner, Emilya Cachapero, has and continues to play in expanding and focusing his awareness of social justice issues. In his spare time, he loves to cook and watch Asian videos.
Human Rights Intern
Carmen D. Berkley,
Co-Founder & Board Member
Carmen Berkley is an award winning political strategist, entrepreneur, radio host, and DJ striving to change the world through politics, social impact, creative expression, and culture. Carmen has focused her career on intersecting the issues of Black, Indigenous, People of Color, and women into initiatives and programs that have improved the lives of millions of people.
She currently serves as the Vice President of Programs at Group Health Foundation, where she co-leads the programs team working to shape and accelerate efforts to improve health equity and advance community aspirations for a vibrant, healthy future in Washington State.
Carmen serves as a co-founder and board member of Can’t Stop! Won’t Stop! Consulting, Board Chair of re:power and a board member of Advocates for Youth and National Domestic Workers Alliance.
Leialohaokeānuenue Kaʻula is an inspiring educator, a motivating facilitator, and a community leader. Her passion to advocate for Native Hawaiians and Indigenous communities of the Pasifika is represented in the multitudes of educational programs, and organizations she has founded and is an active participant. Kumu Lei is the Hula Instructor and Founder of Ka Lei Haliʻa O Ka Lokelani (a local hula school in Oregon), a Advisory Director and the Education Committee Chairperson of Ka ʻAha Lāhui O ʻOlekona Hawaiian Civic Club of Oregon and SW Washington, and the Corresponding Secretary of Na Lei Makalapua (Mainland Council of the Association of Hawaiian Civic Club).
Haʻahaʻa (humility), ʻohana (family), and aloha (love) are values that were instilled in her at a very young age. Kumu Lei was born on the Island of O’ahu to a family of cultural historians and entertainers. Growing up in a family with deep roots in the Hawaiian culture meant she embraced her home and used that guidance to pave the journey she lives everyday.
Scott Lu is the Creative Director of Mia Riley Designs and Founder of Second Space. He joined the Board for Can’t Stop Won’t Stop Consulting in 2020. He brings over 15 years of experience of working across industries providing experience in fundraising, marketing and sales, and management and development.
He began his professional career in Non Profit focusing on youth and student organizing giving him first hand experience with program development and relationship management. He eventually moved on to the private sector by creating Mia Riley Designs and Second Space which gave him first hand opportunities in small business development and financial management.
Carmen Perez is the President and CEO of The Gathering for Justice.She has dedicated her 20-year career to advocating for many of today's important civil rights issues, including mass incarceration, gender equity, violence prevention, racial healing and community policing. She began as a probation officer in Santa Cruz, CA, where she ran contemporaneous programming inside nearby prisons, with a violence prevention and community development organization, Barrios Unidos, where she is now a board member. Carmen founded Justice League NYC in 2014 and subsequently led several mass mobilizations which paralyzed New York City after the non-indictment of the officer who killed Eric Garner in December 2015.
As National Co-Chair of the 2017 Women’s March on Washington, she brought on over 500 partners and facilitated a joint process to produce the statement of purpose known as the Unity Principles with 32 other women of diverse backgrounds. She is a leading expert on criminal justice reform and police accountability policy, testifying at President Obama’s 21st Century Task Force on Policing in 2015, and being sought after by elected officials who are serious about passing drastic reforms.
melissa kelley colibrí
Melissa (they/them) is a Deafdisabled Queer mixed latinx non-binary femme. They are a full time accessibility activist in the LGBTQ community of San Diego, CA and are the Accessibility Manager for San Diego Pride, San Diego Trans Pride, and She Fest: ensuring events and meetings are accessible for all people with disabilities including Deaf folks. In addition, they provide free accessibility training workshops for community members, organizers, and agencies that serve LGBTQ folks in San Diego County and give presentations on accessibility nationally. Melissa also co-coordinates access for virtual events hosted by the People’s Collective for Justice and Liberation with another Deaf coordinator. They are on the advisory council for the People’s Collective for Justice and Liberation as well as the advisory board for the Disability Project housed under the Trans Law Center.
Melissa believes inaccessibility is a wide-ranging social justice issue of growing importance as more individuals navigate the world with the experience of disability and especially for those who also experience additional oppression and discrimination. They believe that a sense of community is vital for all people with disabilities including Deaf folks to have within all LGBTQ communities. Community enables us to connect and thrive and organize, it brings feelings of identity and pride as well as kinship and is possible through full accessibility, communication, inter-group relations and networking. Melissa is deeply passionate about breaking isolation through networking, building a support system with ready access to resources, services, and events for all disabled and Deaf members of the LGBTQ community in San Diego and beyond – in person or online.
Leang Ngov, a community advocate and homeschooling teacher, has been doing community work since 2015, including being a Deaf mentor for American River College's Interpreter Preparation Program and Deaf expert for their Service Learning course. The community work also includes being an accessibility co-coordinator for People’s Collective with another Deaf co-coordinator and Gold House. Leang also has served on Deafhood Foundation's board and RID's Diversity Council in the past. As Deaf, Southeast Asian womxn with parents who were refugees from Cambodia after the Pol Pot regime and as a mother of three, making conscious efforts to make sure her children are raised feeling proud of their history, Leang has learned to recognize the validity in multiple perspectives. Being the only Deaf student in schools with two interpreters, the impact resulted in her language deprivation syndrome. All of her life experiences have given her a deep passion for educating the community, especially those working in Deaf-related field, on how to develop a healthy collaboration between hearing and Deaf individuals and starting the conversations that Leang hopes will lead to empowerment for all.