Please join the LA Partnership for Early Childhood Investment and our co-sponsors, the Los Angeles County Anti-Racism, Diversity, and Inclusion (ARDI) Initiative and SoCal Grantmakers, on Wednesday, January 18th from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. for a virtual discussion on power building with LA County’s lowest-income children, families, and providers.
On nearly every important measure of health, well-being, and success, LA County’s lowest-income families with infants and toddlers, as well as their early care and education providers, remain distressingly far behind their peers. While these inequities and disparities have been persistent, they do not have to be permanent. Power building from both within the community and within families can serve as a catalyst for lasting change.
Join a panel of experts as we explore the key strategies for building power to create long-term, sustainable change in ways that center the needs and agency of low-income families and providers.
Executive Director, InnerCity Struggle
Maria began her activism over twenty-five years ago as a high school student living along the U.S./Mexico border during a time when state legislation was proposed that criminalized immigrant families and youth. This hostile environment resulted in Maria and her fellow Latinx schoolmates being removed from their schools. Despite the discrimination she faced, she completed her studies and later earned degrees from UC Berkeley and Harvard University. The experience taught her the importance of lifting up her voice through collective action to ensure disadvantaged students have access to a quality education.
Maria has organized for educational justice through various campaigns and initiatives. Since 2002, as a leader of InnerCity Struggle, she has spearheaded an expansion of the influence of students and community residents in decision-making about Los Angeles' public schools, mobilizing thousands of Latinx parents and students in the Eastside of Los Angeles.
Maria's work with InnerCity Struggle has resulted in a wide range of improvements within Eastside schools as well as schools throughout the Los Angeles Unified School District. In the last few years, Maria's leadership has helped win several breakthrough victories; new schools for the Eastside, a district-wide policy focused on preparing all students for college, increased funds for high-need schools, smaller learning environments in Eastside high schools and an expansion of school-based health services. After years of demanding that all students be prepared for college, the tide is changing. Graduation rates in the Eastside are rising and more students are informed about what is needed to succeed.
Over the last decade, InnerCity Struggle has educated and mobilized thousands of Eastside voters ensuring greater civic participation and community action.
Maria's leadership also resulted in the construction of the organization's new permanent home now serving as a Youth and Community Center for the Eastside.
Executive Director, Advancement Project California
John Kim is the Executive Director of Advancement Project California. He has a long track record as a coalition-builder and facilitator of multi-stakeholder collaborations and has established a wide range of partnerships with community-based organizations, elected officials, governmental agencies, academic researchers, and foundations across the state. John most recently oversaw the strategic direction and development of RACE COUNTS, a first of its kind initiative that examines racial disparity, performance, and population impact in each of California’s 58 counties.
President/CEO, Liberty Hill Foundation
Shane Murphy Goldsmith is the President and CEO of Liberty Hill Foundation, one of the nation's most admired social change foundations. Ms. Goldsmith served previously as Liberty Hill's Vice President and Chief Program Officer. She was responsible for the day-to-day oversight of Liberty Hill's programs including our training, grantmaking and campaigns as well as Liberty Hill's operations and finance departments.
Shane is a former Vice President of the Los Angeles Board of Police Commissioners and LA Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA) Commission, and has served on the Commission for the Housing Authority of the City of LA. She is the Co-Chair of the Southern California Grantmakers Board of Directors, California Funders for Boys and Men of Color (CFBMoC) SoCal Region, and People Assisting the Homeless (PATH). Shane was a Durfee Foundation Stanton Fellow focusing on youth justice issues, particularly on ending youth incarceration as we know it in Los Angeles. Shane won the 2014 Congressional Hunger Center Alumni Leadership Award for leadership in programs or policies that promote social justice, reduce poverty and oppression and improve food security.
Prior to joining Liberty Hill, Shane was the Executive Director of PATH Ventures, an affordable housing development agency. She also served as a senior advisor to then-City Council President Eric Garcetti, overseeing housing, economic development, the city budget, public safety and LGBTQ issues. Shane has also worked as a community organizer focusing on economic justice in low income communities of color in LA.
A graduate of Kenyon College, Ms. Goldsmith spent a year as a National Hunger Fellow managing a homeless shelter in Indiana and then conducting federal policy research on welfare reform in Washington, D.C. Shane has a Master's degree in Public Policy and Administration.
Shane lives in Los Angeles with her wife Monica Granados and their two children
D'Artagnan Scorza, Ph.D.
Executive Director, Racial Equity, Los Angeles County Chief Executive Office
Dr. D’Artagnan Scorza currently serves as the inaugural Executive Director of Racial Equity for Los Angeles County. In this capacity, he is tasked with championing the elimination of structural racism while also promoting efforts to deepen the County's work on diversity, equity and inclusion.
Dr. Scorza’s life’s work is centered on building leaders who fight for equity in communities and schools. In his previous roles as the Executive Director of Social Justice Learning Institute, a UC Regent and the President of the Board of Education for the Inglewood Unified School District, he launched programs that helped youth of color become social justice leaders and college graduates. He also helped pass policies that prioritized $160 million for student services across UC campuses and secured $350 million to support school construction for k-12 schools.
As a U.S. Navy Iraq-War Veteran and civic leader, he has received numerous awards and accolades, including being recognized as one of the 40 Emerging Civic Leaders under 40 in 2018 and received the UCLA Recent Graduate Achievement Award in 2016.
Dr. Scorza has been quoted in multiple publications, such as The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Huffington Post, Los Angeles Magazine and several podcasts.