Team

Co-Directors

Suparna Kudesia, Executive Director (pronouns: she/her, they/them)

Email suparna@cofed.org about funding, partnerships, and education opportunities (all things CoFED!)

Suparna is a decolonial educator and immigrant mother. She brings with her over 15 years of experience imagining and breathing life into educational programs and leading organizational development. Suparna believes in the power of unraveled unlearning to shift narratives, heal trauma, and transform systems. She is guided by ancestral re-visioning, abolitionist and decolonial praxis, and manifesting collective dreams. Suparna responds to the call to return stolen wealth as the Choreographer of Collective Change by moving money where it can have a critical impact on building a beautiful regenerative food system – into the hands of young cooperators of color. Suparna lives on unceded Kumeyaay land with her partner, toddler, and numerous bunches of mint.

Teia Evans, Finance & Operations Director (pronouns: she/her)

Email teia@cofed.org about financial harvests and relationships and CoFED operations.

Teia Evans is the Director of Finance and Operations at CoFED. Ms. Evans has been with the organization for 2.5 years, first serving as a board member and now as Director of The Dolla Dolla Bill. She now works with the internal operations and finance for the organization. She has been working to provide the tools for people to start their own cooperatives for the past 5 years and is passionate about cooperative development and building thriving communities. She serves on the boards of both local and national organizations that are committed to economic justice and advancement. Ms. Evans earned her Juris Doctorate and Master of Business Administration degrees at North Carolina Central University.

Education and Curriculum Developer

Ayano K. Jeffers-Fabro

pronouns: she/her

Ayano K. Jeffers-Fabro is an independent consultant for community food initiatives, specializing in place-based, sustainable food system practice. Her most recent work was acting as Project Manager for incubating a community-led grocery cooperative in East Oakland. Ayano grew up in the rural sugar-plantation town of Waialua, Hawai`i, a very different built environment from East Oakland, her experience in both places gave her the insight to draw urban-rural parallels around impacts that gentrification, social disenfranchisement, economic disinvestment and lack of resources in communities of color, has on creating and sustaining a healthy, thriving community. Being a resident and community builder in East Oakland, Ayano sees and lives through the food apartheid mechanisms in motion, such as lack of prioritized availability to fresh, healthy foods. Bridging these urban-rural connections has given Ayano the insight needed to utilize her talents and callings to combat these oppressive forces and inter-generationally heal community. Her consulting business is named Kauhale Honua, which in Hawaiian translates to “earthly village”, and is the lens in which she views the world.

Racial Justice Fellows

Briana Sidney (pronouns: she, her)

Email: briana@cofed.org 

Briana Sidney is a co-owner at Mandela Grocery Cooperative (MGC). She began working at MGC in 2017 at 19 years old. She had no previous grocery store or formal cooperative experience but was intrigued by the idea of cooperative economics and the coop’s mission to be active community members. As an Oakland native, she wanted to work somewhere local that gave back directly to her community. Since then she has been a dedicated member of the coop striving to help uplift and enrich her people. Currently, she is working to create a self-sustaining farmer’s market at a local elementary school to help expose the community to a wider variety of fruits and vegetables.

Maya Marie (pronouns: she/her)

Emailmayam@cofed.org

Maya Marie is a farmer, cook, educator, writer, and budding photographer, born and raised in Baltimore, who now calls Brooklyn home. She’s interested in supporting Black and brown people in deepening their relationships to food and land, and aims to do this by creating educational spaces and mediums that center Black and brown foodways.

Yahdi (pronouns: they/yah)

Email: yahdi@cofed.org 

Yahdi is a Black aspiring farmer, striving for creative avenues to increase access to The Land. Through the fellowship with CoFED, yah and their community are working to increase land access through kits designed from upcycled wood and a lightbulb. Their dream is to guide people in understanding how The Land heals and provides; quite literally supporting us with every movement, waiting to welcome us back with open arms.