GLOBAL YOUTH ADVISORY COUNCIL
The Global Youth Advisory Council (“GYAC”) was created in 2015 to support and amplify the voices of amazing young people, like YOU, who make a difference. Check out our 2017-2018 class below!
THE 2017-2018 CLASS
Alisa is a junior in high school in Burke, Virginia. She is a fierce advocate for intersectionality and has been captivated by politics and world events from a young age – having grown up in the shadow of Washington, DC. A published author and leader of her school’s Future Business Leaders of America branch, Alisa is confident there is nowhere her words can’t take her. Her main goal in life is to give a voice to the voiceless through her stories and poems – dismantling toxic social norms along the way. She also aims to integrate more women of color into the STEM field and to normalize the LGBT community throughout society. When not writing, working for FBLA, or designing the video game she and a friend are building, Alisa enjoys selling her artwork, blogging about and discussing politics, and listening to Broadway musicals.
Ava is a senior in high school in Scottsdale, Arizona. Her eyes were opened to the issue of gender inequality when she watched Miss Representation and realized how cruelly the media was treating both men and women. In eighth grade, Ava wrote a position paper and associated speech on Women’s Economic Empowerment / Equal Representation, and she presented it at the UN where she worked with other kids from all over the world to write resolutions for these issues. She is currently running a chapter of The Representation Project at her school and has hosted screenings of both Miss Representation and The Mask You Live In. She is also creating a self-confidence workshop for young girls and serves as vice president of education and membership for her school's young democrats society. She is passionate about writing and believes she can use it as a way to inspire others to create change. In fact, she is currently working on a novel. She also served on the Global Youth Advisory Council's 2015-16 class.
Cameron is a second-year Psychology student at King's College London. He first became interested in The Representation Project after watching a screening of The Mask You Live In at his school. Cameron lives his life attempting to spread kindness and promote equality, a philosophy he sees echoed in The Representation Project. Cameron is originally from San Jose, California, and some of his hobbies include playing disc golf, playing soccer, and spending time with people he loves. He also loves animals and their ability to express themselves without effort and is super passionate about recognizing, understanding, and tackling mental health issues. Cameron wants to help individuals recognize their full potential in life and support those same people in following their dreams.
Cathy is a self-proclaimed politico, social activist, and avid writer. She is passionate about engaging youth in the political process and using the written word to empower marginalized communities and challenge stereotypes. She has been involved in state, gubernatorial, and congressional campaigns in California and serves as the Political Director of the California High School Democrats. She has worked for Running Start, a nonprofit that recruits and trains young women to run for office, and the Democratic Party of Orange County. She is also the first high school student on the Board of Directors of the National Women’s Political Caucus, Orange County. Additionally, as the Social Change and Training Coordinator for AMP Global Youth, she works to identify and train youth to be global change-makers. In her spare time, she enjoys writing (or editing) articles about the perplexities of politics and human life.
Chloe is currently a sophomore in Albany, California whose interests include public policy and media literacy. She has made two short documentaries: one about men's and women's morning routines, and the other about a restaurant in Oakland, CA and how food is connected to community. Together, they were shown at three film festivals. She is passionate about law and restorative justice, and participates in Youth and Government, a statewide model legislature and court program, and is a Basic Law Trainee at Centerforce Youth Court, which offers youth offenders a second chance through restorative justice, peer accountability, and empowering opportunities. She is also a member of a group that recently formed by her and other students, teachers, and parents that gives presentations on pertinent topics in our society such as racism and sexism.
Getzamany is from Atlanta, Georgia and will be studying in New York. She recently graduated high school and hopes to be a voice for The Representation Projects on her campus. She plans to major in political and international studies during her time at Bard College. Her passions include activism, languages, and traveling. Getzamany carries a strong interest in political representation and leadership empowerment as well as exploring the intersectionality of stereotypes. Getzamany was first introduced to The Representation Project through the documentary Miss Representation where she was compelled to host screenings of the film and create a week at her school to discuss representation. In joining the Global Youth Advisory Council, Getzamany is excited about working with other empowering young people across the world to enact change in the societies they live in.
Haley is a fourteen-year-old college student majoring in Chemistry, minoring in Education with an ultimate goal of obtaining either a chemistry doctorate or medical degree to pursue a career which promotes health equity through education, advocacy, and scientific research. Haley graduated from high-school at age 13, and started her higher education journey at community college where she achieved a 3.5 GPA and was invited into Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society, Sigma Alpha Pi National Society of Leadership and Success, and Who's Who Among College and University Students. During her homeschool years, Haley was selected as a Davidson Young Scholar, was admitted into Duke Talent Identification Program, the John Hopkins Center for Talented Youth, and The Awesome Math program. She thrived in math and science and placed in the top 25% of young test-takers globally on the American Mathematics Competition 10 earning Achievement Roll status. Additionally, she is an accomplished orchestral harpist and classical pianist. Haley is always eager to be of service and does so via multiple organizations of which she is apart: The Rhoer Club of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Incorporated; Jack and Jill of America, Incorporated where she has served as Foundation Chair; and Artemis Medical Society as a STEM National Pre-Med Club Initiative Ambassador. In her free time, Haley enjoys performing spoken word, spending time with her family, training her puppy, and drawing.
Katelyn is a teenage multimedia journalist, founder of a nonprofit organization, and a motivational speaker. At the age of 12, she started a 501c3 nonprofit charity, The Angels Community Outreach. The organization's mission is to provide a hand-up to those in need by distributing free clothing, food, and other services. Katelyn has won numerous accolades for her volunteer work, including the Presidential Volunteer Service Gold Award, Prudential Spirit of Community Award, and has been honored by the New Jersey General Assembly. Since 2015, Katelyn has served on the Global Youth Advisory Council at The Representation Project. Katelyn has spoken to schools, groups, conferences, and recently presented a TEDx Talk in London about making a difference and how she started her charity. As a multimedia journalist, Katelyn has worked with a variety of news outlets, producing compelling reports from a teen's perspective. She has written about everything from gender equality to social justice. Katelyn is currently an undergraduate student at UCLA and interning with UN Women.
Lacy is a senior at the University of Pennsylvania studying Art History and Urban Education Policy. She is an advocate for sexual violence awareness and reform, serving as a member of the Rape Abuse Incest National Network's Speakers Bureau and a prevention educator on her campus. Lacy volunteers regularly in local schools, currently teaching in local prisons through the Petey Greene program and teaching Spanish at local elementary schools. She is an Editor at Large with The Huffington Post, a contributor at The Moviegoer, and the editor in chief at her school's law journal. Lacy writes and speaks regularly on gender representation in media, the intersections of mental health and sexual violence, and using art in activism.
Lily is heavily involved in her campus and community. She is passionate about empowering girls, dismantling white supremacy, and being a force of change in the world. In addition to being involved in a number of organizations and affinity groups, Lily is the creator of an online platform to promote awareness about sexual assault on college campuses called the Red Tape Project. Lily is a psychology and English major with a minor in Gender and Women’s studies. She has spoken at Ignite 26 on the topic of secondary trauma in the civil courtroom, and also spoke at the Project PAVE annual luncheon as a 2017 Transformations scholar. Lily hopes to work for a community agency to offer affordable mental healthcare to survivors of trauma and to continue to empower women across the country.
Lindsay is a sophomore in university, a proud Canadian, and fluent in three languages. She loves cats, Costa Rica, and cucumbers (just kidding, but don’t you love the alliteration?). Growing up in a community of quirky personalities (cucumbers), and Canadian humor, Lindsay has developed a strong global perspective and a passion for equality and social justice. Lindsay first began her involvement in Me to We campaigns for social change at the age of fourteen, then served two terms on the Youth Volunteer Corps’ (“YVC”) International Youth Advisory Board, attended a YVC summit in Kansas City, participated in a human rights trip to Washington, DC with the Asper Foundation, and attended The John Humphrey Center for Peace and Human Rights “This is Our Canada” retreat. Through these and other incredible experiences, Lindsay established an even stronger desire to create change. She is proud to be a part of the Global Youth Advisory Council – a small yet powerful group of individuals scattered across the globe that she likes to call “world changers and history makers.” During her second term on the Council, she ambitiously aims to replace Western culture’s judgment, envy, and prejudice with acceptance, respect, and tolerance. She is thrilled to once again join the Council and grateful for the opportunity to collaborate with such strong, young, and independent individuals in promoting positive social change.
Mars is a non-binary thirteen-year-old freshman at the Journeys School High School. Mars was born in San Francisco, California but now lives in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Mars founded the Gay-Straight Alliance for their middle school when they were in 8th grade, where they ran weekly meetings. In 8th grade, Mars organized a middle-school-wide spirit week and an event with the local PFLAG chapter, the nation’s largest family and ally organization. Their interests include watching TED Talks, playing tennis, and playing kendama (a Japanese skill toy). Mars is very passionate about minority representation in the media, as media plays a very powerful role in affecting how youth view themselves in the world. In particular, Mars is very motivated to educate their peers and teachers on how the gender binary affects kids like Mars who fall outside of the typical gender binary. Mars has always been interested in activism through means of documentaries, so watching Miss Representation was a very empowering experience for them.
Neha is a second-year student at the University of Virginia (UVA), majoring in Systems Engineering. Her initial interest in feminism sparked after watching Miss Representation in tenth grade and then cultivating a profound interest for the organization itself. As president of the UVA chapter of SPICMACAY, a organization that promotes Indian classical arts, an executive officer of Meditation for Students, a writer for the Cavalier Daily, UVA's highly recognized student newspaper, and a member of the Engineering Student Council, Neha has learned the utmost importance of education beyond the classroom and its impact on true change and progress. She finds her passions in discussion of reform, particularly in the STEM field, which she envisions herself in someday. Outside of school activities, Neha is also an avid meditator and certified Heartfulness Meditation Trainer, which centers her on a daily basis. Neha is honored to be part of the Global Youth Advisory Council again.
Olivia is originally from Atlanta and studies film at King’s College London, UK. As project manager of King’s Women in Politics Society, she is determined to empower women as well as break down harmful gender stereotypes that oppress us all. Since high school, Olivia has been an avid believer in the power of media as an agent for change from co-hosting her high school’s news channel to directing her own radio show in college. Olivia is also the Events Manager for the King’s Players, King’s College’s leading theatre society, and she recently directed a play which addressed the nationalist wave sweeping through the West. Olivia is also a member of King’s College’s LGBT society and Amnesty International. She had the opportunity to help screen The Representation Project’s The Mask You Live In when it toured in London and is a huge admirer of the film and the work of The Representation Project.
Samantha was born and raised in New Jersey and is now a senior broadcast journalism major at the University of Maryland, College Park. On campus, Samantha serves as the Vice President of Public Relations for the Panhellenic Association, which oversees all sixteen panhellenic sororities on campus. She also serves as the Treasurer of the Society of Professional Journalists chapter and is the student representative to the journalism college's faculty assembly. Additionally, Samantha serves as the Vice President of Communication for the Mortar Board Senior Honor Society. In her free time, Samantha enjoys editing videos, playing sports, and binge watching Netflix with her friends. She is committed to eradicating sexual assault on college campuses, and has been working with several student organizations to figure out how to best combat this issue. She has dreams of one day being a political reporter or an elected official.
Shambhavi is a fifteen-year-old sophomore in Plano, Texas. She is passionate about human rights and women’s causes. Outside of school, she is involved with French club, Venturing Crew (Co-ed organization under Boy Scouts of America), Science Fair, and various other volunteering endeavors. She credits her feminist personality to her strong foundation in martial arts (she is a 2nd degree black belt) and the multitude of strong women in her life. Shambhavi is thankful to the Global Youth Advisory Council for the exciting opportunity to work on a project in education for teen parents.
Sho Sho is a sixteen-year-old junior at an all girls’ school in Northern California. She is passionate about feminism and race and does her best to be civically engaged. She is part of her school newspaper’s editorial board and serves as the opinions editor, the editor-in-chief of the literary magazine, the head of her school’s Humanities and Social Change Club, and a lead in her school’s Diversity Club. This year, she is collaborating with California Assemblymember Low and his district office to work towards lowering the voting age to seventeen and making California a sanctuary state. She is looking forward to making a difference through the Representation Project!
Sierra is a sophomore at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor working towards a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Acting and a double minor in Political Science and Community Action, Social Change. She is beyond grateful to be part of the Global Youth Advisory Council as it will allow her to formally contribute to an organization and movement that has greatly affected her and the lives of many. This past year, Sierra started working as the Director of Education with Project SOAR to create a curriculum for high schools to promote greater diversity and equity in arts education. She has also been organizing events such as the Women’s March Ann Arbor with Progressives at the University of Michigan to combat the political climate. In the coming year, Sierra will be serving as the School of Music, Theatre & Dance Representative for the Central Student Government and will draft resolutions to better her community from a grassroots foundation. Back at home, in San Francisco, Sierra works with Charis Denison, facilitating workshops based in identity and self advocacy. In 2016, Sierra workshopped her own curriculum with focus on gender stereotypes at the Marin Teen Girl Conference for hundreds of girls. Sierra is excited to continue empowering young women to enact real change.
Sofia is a high school student with a deep passion for all things social justice, diversity, and representation. She's loved being part of the Global Youth Advisory Council for the past two years and can't wait to serve on it again this year. This year, Sofia is serving as the chair of a subcommittee which is working to plan a 5K run for her school's celebration of International Day of the Girl. Additionally, she's a mentor for her school's affinity group and member of her school's Diversity Council and Girls Learning and Making a Difference Club. She believes writing is one of the most important tools to create social change, and, in addition to winning national awards from the Scholastic Art & Writing awards for her creative work, she's also won multiple regional awards for essays about feminism and race. In addition to social justice advocacy and writing, Sofia has a love for music and is a piano and voice student at the Manhattan School of Music precollege. She is so excited to be working with the Council to amplify marginalized voices and work towards social justice!
Thanks to the Global Youth Advisory Council Class of 2015-2016!