Meet the Delegates

Dallas Goldtooth, Indigenous Environmental Network (IEN)

(Mdewakanton Dakota and Dine) is the National Keep It In The Ground Campaign Organizer for the Indigenous Environmental Network and a co-founder of the 1491s comedy group. He is Mdewakantunwan Dakota from the village of Cansayapi in Dakota territory. He is a digital media producer, a nationally-known public speaker, activist, performer and event emcee. Dallas has traveled across Turtle Island aka North America sharing story, entertainment and knowledge.

Kandi Mossett, Indigenous Environmental Network (IEN)

(Mandan, Hidatsa, Arikara) was born and raised on the Fort Berthold Reservation in North Dakota and has emerged as a leading voice in the fight to bring visibility to the impacts that climate change and environmental injustices are having on Indigenous communities across North America.  After completing her Master’s Degree in Environmental Management, Mossett began her work with the Indigenous Environmental Network as the Tribal Campus Climate Challenge Coordinator, engaging with more than 30 tribal colleges to instate community based environmental programs, discuss issues of socio-ecologic injustice, and connect indigenous youth with green jobs.  She currently serves as IEN’s Native Energy & Climate Campaign Organizer, focusing at present on creating awareness about the environmentally & socially devastating effects of hydraulic fracturing on tribal lands.

Tom Goldtooth, Indigenous Environmental Network (IEN)

Since the late 1980’s, Tom has been involved with environmental related issues and programs working within tribal governments in developing indigenous-based environmental protection infrastructures. Tom works with indigenous peoples worldwide and is known as one of the environmental justice movement grassroots leaders in North America addressing toxics and health, mining, energy, climate, water, globalization, sustainable development and indigenous rights issues. Tom is one of the founders of the Durban Group for Climate Justice; co-founder of Climate Justice NOW!; a co-founder of the U.S. based Environmental Justice Climate Change initiative and a member of the International Indigenous Peoples Forum on Climate Change. Tom is a policy adviser to indigenous communities on environmental protection and more recently on climate policy focusing on mitigation, adaptation and concerns of false solutions.

Alberto Salamando, Indigenous Environmental Network (IEN)

Alberto Saldamando, (Chicano/Zapoteca) has a BA and JD from the University of Arizona and is admitted to the practice of law California (retired status, Arizona Bar). He served as General Counsel to the International Indian Treaty Council for 18 years and now works with the Indigenous Environmental Network as international counsel on climate change issues. He has served in many organizational and representational capacities before various and varied form at the United Nations and Organization of American States, having been an active participant in the negotiations leading up to the United Nations Declaration on the rights of indigenous peoples, as well as the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues and the first mandate for the now Special Rapporteur on the rights of Indigenous Peoples.

Isabella Zizi, Idle No More SF Bay

Isabella Zizi is 23 years old, and member of the Northern Cheyenne, Arikara, and Muskogee

Creek tribes. Zizi and her family has resided in Richmond, Ca for over 40 years and has served the Native community profoundly with bringing the first ever Native American Health Center and pow-wow to her city. As the youngest member of Idle No More SF Bay since 2014, she’s helped organize refinery healing walks; Indigenous led prayer walks, one walk a month from April to July all along the refinery towns on the East Bay of San Francisco from 2014 to 2017, this includes Shell, Tesoro, Conoco Phillips 66, Valero, and the Chevron refineries.

Heather Milton Lightening, Indigenous Climate Action (ICA)

Heather Milton-Lightening has seventeen years of organizing experience from local issues to international campaigns. Heather was a founding member of Native Youth Movement based in Winnipeg, MB in 1995. She helped found Winnipeg’s first Native youth organization called Aboriginal Youth Initiative, Inc. Heather then went on to found and build a national Native youth network that supported Native youth organizing across the US and Canada with the Indigenous Environmental Network. She was a former member of the United Nations Environment Programme’s Youth Advisory and has extensive experience in lobbying internationally through the United Nations and other International arenas on Indigenous Peoples issues. Heather’s work since then has been to build capacity and find resources that help local Native communities. She currently is a Co-Director of the Indigenous Tar Sands Campaign and is currently is working on a contractual basis with many different organizations doing trainings, facilitating and support work for Native communities.

Kali Akuno, Cooperation Jackson

Kali Akuno is a co-founder and co-director of Cooperation Jackson.  Kali served as the Director of Special Projects and External Funding in the Mayoral Administration of the late Chokwe Lumumba of Jackson, MS. His focus in this role was supporting cooperative development, the introduction of eco-friendly and carbon reduction methods of operation, and the promotion of human rights and international relations for the city.  Kali also served as the Co-Director of the US Human Rights Network, the Executive Director of the Peoples’ Hurricane Relief Fund (PHRF) based in New Orleans, Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina. And was a co-founder of the School of Social Justice and Community Development (SSJCD), a public school serving the academic needs of low-income African American and Latino communities in Oakland, California.

Monica Atkins, Cooperation Jackson and the Climate Justice Alliance

Monica Atkins is a Chicago native and graduate of Jackson State University where she completed a Bachelor’s degree in English with an emphasis in Journalism. A poet, activist, and member of Cooperation Jackson in Jackson, MS, Atkins has shown leadership in engaging public service workers around just transition, civil, human, and workers rights.  For the past 10 years, Atkins has organized social, cultural events and actions including Art, Poetry, and Justice Slam, Freedom Summer March, and March on Mississippi. Atkins has worked for several labor organizations including United Auto Workers, American Federation of Teachers, and Communication Workers of America. Atkins is currently the Just Transition Organizer  for the Climate Justice Alliance

Katia Avilés-Vázquez, Organización Boricuá de Agricultura Ecológica de Puerto Rico

Katia Aviles has worked for the past 25 years seeking and organizing alternative participatory methods for under represented communities. Her work expands upon her activism in the US for visibility of Latino populations.  She has a doctorate in Cultural and Political Ecology and has worked for almost a decade on the intersection between science and political activism with grassroots community leaders and farmers.  She is a member of Organización Boricuá de Agricultura Ecológica, PR Chapter of La Vía Campesina, and currently working on Post-hurricane Maria self-recovery efforts.

Liana Lopez, Climate Justice Alliance

Liana Lopez is a multimedia communications professional with 15+ years of experience developing and implementing educational and social justice projects from social media to national exhibitions. She co-founded the Librotraficante Caravan across the Southwest in response to Arizona’s dismantling of TUSD’s Mexican American Studies program and banning of 90+ books written by Latino authors. She produces and co-hosts Nuestra Palabra: Latino Writers Having Their Say radio show on 90.1 FM Pacifica in Houston highlighting Latino literature, social justice and educational issues. She’s a recipient of a Houston Arts Alliance Grant for a multimedia/photography project based on her travels through post-revolutionary Nicaragua. Her most recent photography exhibition, commissioned by Art Institute of Houston, showcased South Africa’s “post-democracy” era. She recently joined Climate Justice Alliance (CJA) as their new communications coordinator and is excited to work with allies who believe that a Just Transition is possible.

Jaron Browne, Grassroots Global Justice Alliance

Jaron Browne is the National Organizer for Global Well Being programs for Grassroots Global Justice Alliance (GGJ), responsible for building out GGJ’s Just Transition, climate justice and anti-militarism work, including support for CJA’s Our Power Campaign, and other national and international climate justice and new economy campaigns. Jaron coordinated the It Takes Roots delegations to the UNFCCC COP21 in Paris and COP22 in Marrakesh and was a co-author of the report We Are Mother Earth’s Red Line, analyzing the impact of Paris Climate Agreement.  Jaron has worked with GGJ member organizations to coordinate a series of Just Transition Assemblies in Detroit, Vermont, Seattle, Rhode Island, and Portland.  Before joining GGJ, Jaron was an organizer with POWER and Causa Justa::Just Cause for nearly 13 years, building the power of working class Black and Latino families in the Bay Area.