Sam is a graduate student at the University of Southern Maine in Community Planning and Development. She focuses her research on cooperative and local economies and alternative housing ownership strategies, such as community land trusts, cooperative living and cohousing.
Elizabeth Capone Henriquez, MPH
Elizabeth is a nonprofit professional with over 15 years of experience in the sector. Originally from Auburn, she lived in New York City from 2000-2012, where she worked for and attended Columbia University, earning both a BA and MPH. Her focus in public health was on urbanism and health. She served as board president of New Beginnings, a mid-sized nonprofit for homeless youth based in Lewiston. She currently serves on the boards of the Friends of the Portland Community Free Clinic and Home Start, an affordable housing non-profit.
Jim “Xiknawi” Melloh, MD, MS
Dr Melloh practiced and taught medical students and resident physicians in the areas of family medicine, geriatrics, and end of life care for almost three decades. A large part of his career has been in service to under-served and economically challenged populations in communities across the continent. He has served as medical director for a home health agency and two rehabilitation-nursing facilities, as well as led a geriatric home visit team in Northeast Ohio. A resident of Maine for the past twenty years, he moved to the Portland area in 2013.
Stephen is semi-retired and works part-time for the Maine Locker Project, a non-profit that collects donated fresh produce and non-perishables then distributes them to the greater Portland area public schools and community centers. He has been an activist for progressive causes for almost 50 years.
Grace is a retired civic leader who worked at the anti-poverty agency and was director of various county food programs. She was appointed as Yonkers de-segregation Fair Housing Director and later organized a neighborhood in buying and rehabilitating apartment buildings.
Jonah is the coordinator of Cooperative Fermentation, a consultant with the Cooperative Development Institute, a peer advisor with the Democracy at Work Network and cooperative designer and facilitator with the Resilience Hub. He is on the board of Crown of Maine Organic Cooperative and the Eat Local Foods Coalition. He co-founded Local Sprouts Cooperative, People’s Free Space, Meg Perry Center and Burdock Gathering.
Rob is a community organizer and project manager with extensive training in non-profit leadership. He has played an active role in mobilizing progressive community-based initiatives in Louisiana, Pennsylvania, Vermont and Maine and is dedicated to engaging diverse groups of people in efforts to strengthen their communities in meaningful ways.