Conference Program 2023
FRIDAY, APRIL 21, 2023 

8:30AM – 9:30AM 






Just Transition: Theory and Practice to Liberate Land and Labor
Davin Cardenas, North Bay Jobs with Justice
Tré Vasquez, Movement Generation

LOCATION: Richard W. Call Building 600, Rm. 639

This session will dive into Just Transition theory, a framework being used by communities to transition from an economy of exploitation and extraction of resources, to one of regeneration and collective care. We will use the 5 for Farmworker organizing campaign in Sonoma County as a practical application of Just Transition theory, learning how farmworkers are fighting for power inside of the grape/wine industry in Sonoma County, all while building a new industry of earth care and land restoration. When we fight, we win!


Rising and Resisting: Youth on the Front Lines
Graciela Uriarte, American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California 
Kalyani Ryaru, American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California

LOCATION: Richard W. Call Building 600, Rm. 641

Since the 2016 election, and arguably long before that, young people have borne the brunt of the constant seismic shifts to the world as we knew it. From unstable educational, political and economic systems to a collective erosion of mental and emotional health due to a global pandemic, youth have continued to find ways to show up for themselves and each other while navigating a society in which they often feel neglected, silenced or disregarded. Join us in exploring how young folks have resisted the last several years and how they can model for all ages what it will take to rise up out of an era of despair into an era of hope.


Serfs Up/ Landlords Down!
Chad Bolla, North Bay Organizing Project

LOCATION: Richard W. Call Building 600, Rm. 656

This workshop explores/contextualizes the Myth of Meritocracy and the concept of "landlordism." Participants will have the opportunity to reflect on their personal stories in regards to the idea of "home" through a guided creative activity. Participants explore how our "market-based" commodified housing system is unjust, harmful and not sustainable and connected to the epidemic of unsheltered folks that we see growing rapidly. The solution we offer is to organize tenants that will both advocate for stronger tenant rights and protections and work toward the goal of socialized housing.


Creating Communities of Care: Utilizing Grassroots Support Models to Address Youth Mental Health
Rafael Vazquez Guzman, Lideres del Futuro Avanzando
Our House Equity and Research Fellows

LOCATION: Richard W. Call Building 600, Rm. 657

This presentation will examine the shifts in needs of mental health for students across Sonoma County from Middle School to Community College. We will discuss these findings by Rafael Vazquez Guzman, executive director of Lideres del Futuro Avanzando, and explore models of creating community care in education. Our House Equity Fellows will guide us through the importance of integrating holistic wellness in schools and communities, highlight the successes of these programs when used at the community level, and explore how we can bring these models to scale in schools across the county.


Salary Negotiations: You Can’t Get It if You Don’t Ask
Lauralyn Larsen, Santa Rosa Junior College


Have you ever started a job and wondered, could I have gotten more money? Most people do not know the learned skill of salary negotiations – when to ask and how to say it. In this workshop you will learn the skills of salary negotiations to use both at the time you are hired and when you receive a performance review. Learn about salary differences between people and gender groups, and why it is important to ask for what you deserve. The session will incorporate demonstrations and simple practice sessions done in pairs.



Leafing Out Self-Commodification: Growing New Perceptions of Self-Care
Ali Soto, Latino Service Providers
Benjamin Rosel, Latino Service Providers
Mar Rivas, Latino Service Providers
Jasmine Amador, Santa Rosa Junior College

LOCATION: Richard W. Call Building 600, Rm. 639

In this interactive workshop, we will examine the commercialization of self-care and its effects on this generation's perception of wellness and community. We will discuss how generational differences and stigmatization of mental health has contributed to barriers in accessing mental health supports, how individuals regardless of age can practice self-care in anti-capitalist ways, and how we can access community resources in Sonoma County. Workshops participants will have the opportunity to explore their own perceptions of self-care.


Health and Justice
Healthcare for All Working Group
Healdsburg High School Young Democratic Socialists

LOCATION: Richard W. Call Building 600, Rm. 641

This presentation by the Healthcare for All Working Group, a coalition of Sonoma County health professionals, labor activists, and community activists will explore the glaring gaps and injustice in our current healthcare system, how the design of our system worsens social, racial and gender inequities, investigate how other countries can provide universal care that delivers superior health outcomes at much lower cost -and better responses in times of crisis, and examine our options for improving the quality, reliability, equity, and efficiency of our system. Explore together how we can organize to achieve health justice!


Cultivating Queer and Trans Joy: Fighting Back Against Anti-LGBTQIA+ Legislation
Drew Crawford, Positive Images

LOCATION: Richard W. Call Building 600, Rm. 656

This interactive workshop will explore the pro and anti-LGBTQIA+ laws that are being proposed nationally, highlight the activists who are fighting for queer and trans justice, and share the ways we can advocate for queer and trans people in our schools under wider communities.


Reclaiming Our Stories: Learn how telling our stories authentically and powerfully can challenge white supremacist narratives and everyday racism
Lindsay Franco, Sonoma County Office of Equity 
Alegría De La Cruz, Sonoma County Office of Equity
Melissa Valle, Sonoma County Office of Equity

LOCATION: Richard W. Call Building 600, Rm. 657

The Sonoma County Office of Equity offers an interactive workshop that dives into the power of storytelling as a tool to challenge the invisibility of white supremacist history and structures. By understanding the distinction between the stock, concealed, and resistance stories of our communities, and by learning and practicing how to tell our stories from an asset frame, participants will be able to begin developing a powerful and activating story of self, that avoids white supremacist/dominant narrative desires for "race porn" or "trauma porn," when people of color choose how they tell their own stories.


A Degree Is Not Enough: Formula to Successfully Transition from
Classroom to Career
Lakiesha Mcdonald, The WIN Mentality Student Success Employability Skills Training


Meeting ID: 795 3646 8713
Passcode: FQAr97

This workshop will focus on teaching students the importance of knowing that while obtaining a degree is a huge accomplishment, the degree alone does not guarantee nor provide career security. Having a degree creates opportunities, and your ability to highlight and incorporate key employability skills in cover letters, resumes and interviews is what will lead you to connecting to a purpose filled career. It will also, speak to the value of building on these skillsets as a student, along with building the confidence that is needed in order to be an advocate for yourself when negotiating salary and benefits. We will end with an emphasis on students understanding their education and career choices matter and how those choices can positively impact and contribute to their culture and community.

1:00PM – 2:30PM