Renae is a Project Director with the Capacity Building team, where she leads health equity training and technical assistance projects with local, state, Territorial, and Tribal health departments to advance health and racial equity. Renae is a public health-trained, social justice entrepreneur passionate about systems change at the roots of inequities. Her intention is to support holistic healing practices that work to repair the wounds from legacies of violence and oppression against BIPOC, people with disabilities, and communities with intersecting identities. She is grateful for the opportunities to be a co-founder of a healing justice collective and board member of the East Bay Permanent Real Estate Cooperative (EB PREC) and Eden Area Community Land Trust.
Renae currently lives on unceded Ohlone lands (San Francisco Bay Area). She finds joy from frolicking in the beautiful outdoors with her husband, family and friends; being an Iyengar-yogi student; deepening in her own healing; eating and cooking good food; and shooting hoops.
Sari leads the organizing and advocacy work at HIP and coordinates Public Health Awakened, a network of public health professionals organizing to support social justice movements and resist attacks on our communities. She is passionate about mobilizing people around the issues most important to them and bringing a social justice and equity lens into all spaces.
Sari grew up in the Bay Area and was raised on activism. When not at a protest or organizing meeting, she can be found swimming in cold bodies of water or escaping to the woods.
Jessi provides training and technical assistance and develops resources to support the centering of health equity. Her roots in sexual violence prevention and activism give her a unique perspective and passion for fully integrating public health and social justice movements. She is particularly interested in living and supporting the White anti-racist journey.
Jessi grew up in Illinois and currently lives in Madison, Wisconsin with her family. When she isn’t working or reading to her book-obsessed toddler, she is probably watching GBBO or working on her first novel.
Victoria A. Davis
Victoria A. Davis
Victoria (she/her) is the Health Equity Capacity Building Intern at HIP. As a current master in public health candidate, Victoria is excited to contribute her experience with health equity research and local public policy to HIP, while learning more about systems change to strengthen her skills as a public health advocate. Her work is motivated by the desire to create equitable outcomes for underserved communities.
Victoria grew up in Fairfield, CA and currently lives in Long Beach, CA as she completes her master’s program. Whether she’s going to art galleries, trying a new hairstyle, or even cooking a dish from a different culture, Victoria loves to express herself creatively and find beauty in everyday life.
Will leads HIP’s Housing Justice Program. He has spent the last 15 years fighting for a world where we all have a roof over our heads, the resources we need to thrive, and the right to determine our own futures. He believes that mass-based, feminist, anti-racist movements get the goods, and has spent his career moving our government institutions into alignment with these movements—with San Mateo and Contra Costa County health departments and BARHII (the coalition of public health departments in the Bay Area). Will’s work has bridged health, housing, land-use, transportation and climate change. He has also served as a trainer and organizational development consultant with governmental and social justice organizations around the country. His research and writing has been published in Progressive Planning and The Informal American City and awarded by the Council of University Transportation Centers.
Outside of work, Will organizes for racial and gender justice, raises a toddler who is convinced she is a feral bobcat, and explores the natural spaces of the Bay Area.
Julian is a Project Director with HIP’s Bridging Partnerships and Strategies Program, where he leads Power-Building Partnerships for Health. Julian draws on his direct experience navigating Inside-Outside strategies for health equity. He has worked as both a grassroots climate and environmental justice organizer and in governmental public health around asthma, air quality, and housing. He served in leadership roles in Rhode Island’s COVID response and is dedicated to building community power to change the political determinants of health.
Julian grew up in the Finger Lakes region of New York on Haudenosaunee land, and has lived more than half his life in Providence Rhode Island on Narragansett land, where he is rooted in community and family with his partner and two children. He loves to garden, bike, dance to live music, cheer for the Celtics, and go to the beach.
Lili co-directs HIP with Solange, and is responsible for advancing the mission and strategic direction of the organization. For nearly 20 years, she has visioned, developed, and implemented policy and systems change to advance health equity in the government and nonprofit sectors, and she’s feeling energized by people’s willingness to talk about race, power and the other root drivers of health. These days, Lili spends a lot of time thinking about and developing novel approaches to activate public health around social justice issues and getting the field more aligned with community organizers and advocates.
Originally from New York, Lili now lives in Oakland and is kept on her toes by her two little kids and an unhealthy obsession with good TV and the Golden State Warriors.
Megan leads HIP’s Bridging Partnerships and Strategies Program, and works to build relationships between health department staff and community organizers to support community power building and advance health and racial equity. She believes that “small is all,” power needs to be made explicit, and that growing deep and accountable connections between people and organizations will support the personal, community, and institutional transformation needed for meaningful social change.
Originally from New Hampshire with long stints in Oakland and Mexico City, Megan currently lives in Denver where she tries to get outside for hikes, gardening, and community gatherings as much as possible with her partner and two kids.
Solange is thrilled to have joined HIP as Co-Director with Lili, and is responsible for advancing the mission and strategic direction of the organization. She has been in public health practice for over 20 years, advancing progressive policy and systems change to improve health, equity, and sustainability with government partners, advocates and organizers, and communities most impacted. Solange is excited about the clarity and vision of the youth climate movement in naming how racism, late-stage capitalism, and the climate crisis are intertwined root causes of inequities, and inspiring a vision of a future that everyone wants to run towards.
Solange gets joy from playing with her two teenage sons and husband, dancing, painting, gardening, reading, and laying around with her 3 cats.
Clara supports HIP’s communications and narrative strategy as Communications Associate. She brings to HIP her experience in journalism and nonprofit advocacy, through which she’s worked to build community power at the intersection of racial, environmental, economic, and health justice. Clara believes in language as a means of imagining liberated futures and drawing connections between people and the issues they care about.
Born and raised in San Francisco, Clara considers herself deeply rooted in the Bay Area. She finds much joy in fiction, roller skating, and swimming in the Bay. She also runs a tiny business making extravagant cakes.
Christine is a senior research associate with the Health Instead of Punishment program at HIP. She is committed to the work of dismantling systems of oppression and envisioning a world where the current criminal legal system is replaced with community-based and community-led responses. She is excited to partner with grassroots organizations doing liberative work on the ground and to continue researching the ways that incarceration and policing impact the health of people and communities.
Christine was born and raised in Massachusetts and will always remain a Red Sox fan at heart. Outside of activism and baseball, Christine finds hope in making music and hanging out with her baby niece.
Elana is a Senior Research Associate at HIP, where she advances economic security through collaborative, community-centered research. Elana believes that policy advocacy, community organizing, and participatory research are powerful tools in service of health and racial equity. She brings 10 years of research experience, which she is excited and passionate about applying toward social justice and structural change.
Elana has roots in both Northern and Southern California and currently resides in Los Angeles. She loves spending time outdoors, trying new recipes, admiring every cat and dog she sees, and creating art projects in her spare time.
Melanie is the Operations Associate at HIP and works to manage and strengthen the internal systems that facilitate the organization’s work. She partners closely with other staff to adapt HIP’s administrative tools so that they’re simple and efficient. With a strong passion for equity and justice, she works to design systems that are both effective and equitable. She also provides general administrative assistance and support to the rest of the staff.
Concurrently with HIP, Melanie assists at Regional Asthma Management and Prevention, an organization working to reduce the burden of asthma with a focus on health equity. Outside of her work, she helps transgender individuals update their identification paperwork and speaks to nursing students about transgender issues related to healthcare. She lives in Oakland, where she can be found hiking in the hills or at home geeking out with friends and playing board games.
Amber Akemi Piatt
Amber Akemi Piatt
Amber leads HIP’s Health Instead of Punishment Program. Originally trained in clinical psychology, violence prevention, and public health, she now works with grassroots groups and coalitions on successful campaigns to curb United States militarism, incarceration, and police violence. Her commitment to taking action in solidarity with those who have been most harmed by carceral systems guides her work.
Amber grew up in Reseda, California, and currently lives in Oakland. When she’s not fighting for social justice, she can be found dancing, hiking, or petting the nearest dog.
Sukhdip Purewal Boparai
Sukhdip Purewal Boparai
As Research Project Director, Sukh conducts and elevates rigorous research to advance health equity, with a commitment to true community collaboration. Sukh is especially passionate about addressing racial and economic injustices impacting youth and families — she believes that research is a powerful mechanism to advance change.
Sukh is native to the Bay Area. For fun, she enjoys progressing on her bucket list, baking desserts, photography, and traveling with her husband.
Monica (she/they) is a graduate research intern at HIP and sociology doctoral candidate at the University of California, Los Angeles. Her research interests focus on the sociology of law, gender, and carcerality. In particular, she seeks to examine how the implementation of U.S. restorative and transformative justice responses to gender-based violence intersects with race, gender, and disability.
Prior to matriculating to UCLA, Monica received their J.D. from the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law and B.A. in Gender Studies from the University of Southern California. After graduating from the University of Southern California, she worked as a sexual health educator for Planned Parenthood Los Angeles. Following law school, Monica served as a two-year legal fellow in the immigrants’ rights program at Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus, focusing on cases challenging the detention and deportation of Southeast Asian and other immigrant communities targeted for policing and immigration enforcement.
Outside of work, Monica enjoys cuddling her cats, exploring LA’s foodscapes, hiking, playing video games, and tending to her plants.
Jamie leads communications at HIP. She is passionate about the power of language to build collective action, and brings her background in organizing and strategic communications to work towards a vision of health equity rooted in liberation. She believes that the messages and stories we tell structure the world around us, and are powerful tools that can shift our material realities.
Originally from the east coast, Jamie now lives in Oakland where she spends her time organizing with the Arab Resource and Organizing Center, surfing in the ice cold pacific, and dancing whenever possible.
Sophia (Sophie) Simon-Ortiz
Sophia (Sophie) Simon-Ortiz
Sophie works on organizing and advocacy at HIP and helps coordinate Public Health Awakened. She is passionately dedicated to building the organizing and advocacy power of public health workers across the country and to bridging health justice work with other social justice movements. She believes that all justice and equity work is ultimately about community health, and that all community health work should be rooted in justice and equity. With a “past life” in radio production and oral history recording, Sophie is particularly passionate about harnessing the power of self-determined community storytelling.
Proudly born and raised in the Bay Area, Sophie has family roots from the Southwest to the Midwest to Puerto Rico. Besides all of the above, Sophie finds joy in dancing, hiking, running, and catching up with family and friends far and wide.
Shannon oversees organizational development, human resources, and finance for HIP, to support the health of staff and the organization overall. She brings nearly two decades of experience working throughout California as a grassroots organizer, coalition builder, fundraiser, and communicator. She is passionate about advancing justice and sustainability in the world through internal systems and practices that reflect HIP’s values and commitment to equity.
Shannon lives with her husband and 2 daughters in Oakland, except when they’re camping, or visiting family in New England or Germany. She loves sharing her favorite things about California with her family: mountains, year-round outdoor swimming, avocados, and activism.
Stephani designs and manages HIP’s national capacity-building Leadership Institute for individuals working on health equity in local health departments. As a member of the capacity building team, she also facilitates workshops and provides technical assistance to public health organizations seeking to center equity in their practice. Over the last 18 years Stephani has been focused on advancing racial justice practices and supporting communities of color.
Stephani lives with her husband and seven-year-old in Florida. They are a sports loving family that cheer on the Carolina Tar Heels, the Philadelphia Eagles and now the Jacksonville Jaguars. Stephani also enjoys spending time at the beach, hitting the trails, game nights and blerd culture, and serving her community.