Cole_Headshot_10.10.jpg  B. Cole, Executive Director

Cole holds an MSc from the London School of Economics and has worked as a community facilitator and strategist for more than 15 years.  Drawing on her experience as a consultant, Cole launched the Brown Boi Project in 2010. As an activist, Cole introduced the term “masculine of center”, which is now being used to forward understanding of the incredible breadth of masculinity within the queer community.  A Black Male Achievement Echoing Green Fellow, Rotary International Ambassadorial Scholar, and recipient of the Spirit of Delores Huerta Award, Cole has worked across the U.S. and internationally on issues of leadership development and building social capital for young people of color.  Follow her @bespokebutch.

bb_2083.jpeg  Erica Woodland, Field Building Director

Erica is a healer, activist, trainer and a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who works in communities most impacted by the prison industrial complex and HIV/AIDS. She is a founding member of Power Inside, a harm reduction organization in Baltimore city that serves women who are survivors of gender-based violence, incarceration and abuse. She has done extensive work with youth, people of color and the LGBTQ community providing direct services and advocacy rooted in social justice and self-determination. She believes that using harm reduction strategies and community organizing will lead to healthy and powerful families and communities. Erica also works with HIV Education and Prevention Project of Alameda County and the Downtown Youth Clinic providing clinical supervision and consultation for a new project focused on expanding sexual health services for young queer men and trans people of color.

IMG_5210-Edit.jpg  Carla Zamarripa, Communication and Development Manager

Carla was born and raised in the Pico-Union area of Los Angeles by her Mexican, single mother.  After high school, she got a job in a clothing factory where she worked for ten years. After a serious back injury at work, she realized how unhappy she had been and how important it was for her to get an education. She motivated herself to attend community college—eventually transferring to UC Santa Cruz where she double majored in Sociology and Feminist Studies. Her upbringing, based in Los Angeles and in Mexican culture, motivated her to write her thesis and do a field study based on paisa identified, masculine Latin@s. This study aimed to highlight Latin@ masculine identity in relation to Mexican paisa cultural ties and its importance in identifying masculinity through this specific cultural expression.

IMG_2233.jpg  G Hernandez, Youth Circle Leader

G was born and raised in Santa Ana, CA, by two Mexican immigrant parents, and currently resides in Oakland, CA.  G is trying to finish their biochemistry degree while working as a mentor for Brown Boi Project's Youth Program, and curating content for the Brown Boi Project Tumblr.  G also works as a teacher for the Sylvan Learning Center.  A firm believer that the revolution is going to need doctors and scientists, G hopes that they can use their education to help the communities that are responsible for instilling in them the determination to become a doctor.


Zach.jpg  Zach Murray, Youth Circle Leader
Hailing from Baltimore, MD Zach is a social justice and anti-oppression activist and educator. His involvement in activism is credited to his mother who as a prison activist who encouraged him to meet and engage with other activists from around the world. These opportunities instilled in him a deep passion for speaking truth to power and taking advantage of his privilege to promote the wellbeing of Black people. Attending Cornell University and completing degrees in Africana studies and urban studies provided him a platform to conduct research and develop public policies predominantly addressing food justice, inequality, poverty, and racism. He has worked as a public policy researcher for a number of organizations including Cornell Cooperative Extension, Center for American Progress, the Urban Institute, and Just Harvest in Pittsburgh, PA. In his spare time Zach enjoys riding his bike around town, gardening, and engaging in long, loud, and passionate debates with his close friends.

BBP Fellow

Nolizwe.jpg   Nolizwe Nondabula

Born in California and raised in South Africa, Nolizwe is currently pursuing her M.A. in Urban Affairs at the University of San Francisco.  Before moving back to California, Nolizwe spent her time in Boston serving as the AmeriCorps Financial Grant Coordinator for YouthBuild USA and the Mentorship Program Coordinator for the Hispanic Black Gay Coalition (HBGC).  Nolizwe is deeply committed to using the foundation of love in the gender, raicial, and social justice movement. 

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