“Growing up in Brooklyn, New York, I saw firsthand what happens when corporate interests interfere in urban systems – neighborhoods are bulldozed, lives and livelihoods are interrupted, and cities generate capital for corporations, rather than investing in places and spaces for people.”
Lena has long been involved in environmental education and food justice work. Lena is most interested in facilitating the connection between people and the resources that make our lives possible – an exchange they’ve observed as often being moderated by corporations, whether it’s Big Food in public schools or the contamination plumes left behind by Big Oil.
Lena also has direct experience in challenging corporate power. In the past, they’ve taught indoors and outdoors about the influence of the fossil fuel industry on urban waste streams, and wrote curriculum funded by a liability lawsuit that Exxon lost. They also mobilized young people to campaign against Dart, the corporation that produces Styrofoam, which repeatedly tried to sue, delay, and block the ban on this toxic material. In 2019, the Styrofoam ban went into effect, proving yet again that people power is more powerful than corporate might.
Lena graduated from The New School with a Bachelor’s degree in urban environmental studies. In their spare time, Lena likes to ride their bicycle (in all weathers!) and bake sourdough bread. They also write a daily newsletter called ‘Digestable,’ in which they summarize and analyze news from around the world.