Jackie Byers, Director
Jackie Byers has over 16 years of experience working in low-income communities of color as an organizer and trainer on a broad array of issues, including tenant organizing, youth organizing, regional equity, and more. She is the founding Director of the Black Organizing Project (BOP) in Oakland. Prior to Directing BOP, Jackie served as the Associate Director for the Center for Third World Organizing (CTWO) where she had the opportunity to support community organizing work by providing training and developing some of the most talented young organizers in the country. Jackie is a native of Minnesota where she worked as a Lead Organizer for neighborhood based organizations in Minneapolis working on affordable housing. Prior to moving to Oakland, she was the Training Director for the Organizing Apprenticeship Project (OAP) in Minneapolis. Before leaving Minnesota she served as an active board member with Headwaters Fund For Justice. As a volunteer, Jackie was one of the first recipients of the DFL’s Rising Star award for her work developing training and activating new voters. Jackie is a firm believer in the importance of community, spirit and culture as essential to the transformation of individuals as well as institutions.
Jasmine Jones, Community Organizer
Jasmine Jones has always had a strong commitment to creating a more equitable world for low-income communities. While she attended San Francisco State University, she was an active member of the Black Student Union. She was introduced to organizing in 2010 through a course tailored to organizing in communities of color. While learning theories of organizing she became acquainted with the Black Organizing Project and joined the organization as one of the founding members. Upon graduation Jasmine received the John Kinch Humanitarian award and was the voted the class speaker for the Sociology department. Since her introduction to organizing, Jasmine has worked tirelessly organizing around issues that impact the Black community. In January of 2011 Jasmine was hired to be an organizer with BOP. She currently leads membership development, youth development, and the Bettering Our School System (BOSS) campaign. Jasmine has a strong vision and passion around creating a world where all people are valued and respected.
Misha Cornelius, Communications Coordinator
Misha Cornelius is a recent graduate of the Political Science department at San Francisco State University (SFSU). On campus, Misha was dedicated to organizing students and faculty in her department, and served as the editor-in-chief of a student-run publication titled Politics by the Hour. In the early part of 2010, Misha joined BOP as one of the founding members. Her passion for journalism and story telling led Misha to focus on developing the organization’s print communications by creating the Black Organizing Project’s Our Story newsletter, to document BOP news and events, as well as the captivating stories that BOP members and the community had to share. Today, Misha is inspired by the powerful role that journalism and mass-media have played in highlighting social movements throughout history, specifically during the civil-rights era, and aspires to empower communities of color by sharing their stories.