Co-Executive Directors

Suparna Kudesia, Co-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 living in unceded Kumeyaay lands. 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 of CoFED by moving money where it can have a critical impact on building a beautiful regenerative food system – into the hands of young QTBIPOC cooperators.

Teia Evans, Co-Executive Director (pronouns: she/her)

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

Ms. Evans has been with the organization for 5.5 years, first serving as a board member and now as Director of The Dolla Dolla Bill. As the Co-Executive Director, Teia leads 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 decade 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.

Communications Coordinator

Paulina Rodriguez Ruiz

pronouns: they/them, she/her

Email paulina@cofed.org about any media inquiries and collaboration opportunities.

Paulina Rodríguez Ruiz (they/she) is a storyteller, cultural worker and environmentalist currently residing in occupied Tongva (Long Beach) and Yokuts territories (Fresno). Their work is rooted in the belief that
stories have the power to transform ourselves, each other and our environment, challenging long held narratives and shaping meaning. Living in the Central Valley amongst oppressive systems that seek to dehumanize land and people, while thriving off the exploitation of both, led them down a path of food sovereignty that centers the liberation of QTBIPOC, indigenous and immigrant folx. In their previous work, they developed a food policy council framework for the city of Fresno, established mutual aid networks amongst QTBIPOC farmers within the Valley, and utilized art, culture and storytelling to create intentional spaces of joy.

Just Leader Fellows

ab banks (pronouns: they, them)

ab is a non conforming (in every way) healer and farmer. They’re a deep advocate for complete self sustainability. Born in Oakland, they embody the heart of the Black Panthers. They were the first member to join People’s Program back in 2017, believing in the mission and getting it out the mud. They rock with The Republic of New Afrika; freeing the land and the people is their top priority along side of healing the people! They care about creating sovereignty from an intersectional stand point, pushing folks that experience multiple oppressions to the forefront in leading us to liberation…letting love lead the way. No one is free until we are all free.

Email: ab@cofed.org 


Axúl-Sól Sankofa (pronouns: he/they)

Axúl is Black trans nonbinary queer; earth-worker, DJ, chef, artist, abolistionist, history-keeper, and story-teller. Born and raised in Trenton, New Jersey, sharing community and interdependence was a constant practice and reminder to Axúl that we have a purpose to be here, at this time, with one another. Axúl is a student of herbalism and has been growing food for the past decade and been taught through these practices the power of healing justice, interdependence, patience, and liberation. Their artistic practice is best described as multidisciplinary. He uses the medium of writing to best illustrate his imagination and bring to life other worlds and outer realities full of ancestral dreams. Axúl brings their visions of alternate economies based on just relationships to the ecosystem. Through CoFED, he will deepen his project’s committed to cooperative principles, and steeped in the knowing that it is the earth that frees us.

Email: axul@cofed.org

Gabriela Silva (pronouns: they/she)

Gabi is deeply rooted in community, self-love, and practicing holistic sustainability. With a B.A. in Black Studies from UCSB, they have devoted themselves to a life-long commitment in dismantling oppressive systems and institutions, whilst incorporating healing and joy. Growing up in alternative economy structures, they realized how pivotal community is in addressing and meeting the needs of one another through non-extractive exchanges. Having been involved in mutual aid and reparative work founding a local community pantry and holding healing spaces for misogyny-affected individuals, they firmly believe in community and collective power in building a regenerative, sustainable, and liberated future. In a time where meeting basic needs has become tainted with neoliberalism, their project aims to create an autonomous movement of food and land sovereignty through guerilla gardening in urban landscapes with the use of GIS Mapping, social media mobilization, and people-power. They initially got involved in the regenerative communities and food empowerment movement when they got diagnosed with an autoimmune and witnessed the transformative and regenerative abilities within their own body. Connecting with the Earth and with food has been an incredibly healing experience that she is incredibly grateful for. “Although colonialism may have attempted to break my ties to my ancestry I follow the example of a deep-rooted dandelion, where I plant myself firmly in this Earth connecting to my wide network of family and community to continue this cycle of life, healing, joy, and liberation here in this moment and time.”

Email: gabi@cofed.org