Staff and Board
Carey Fay-Horowitz, Founder & Executive Director, is a graduate of NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study, where she earned a B.A. in writing and community activism while playing drums for several independent bands. Throughout high school and college, she spent summers working at the Berkeley Tuolumne Camp, where she developed an understanding of the power of camp to create community. After volunteering at the Rock 'n' Roll Camp for Girls in Portland, Oregon in 2006, she returned to Oakland to establish a local version of the camp, which debuted in 2008. She plays in the all-female band Songs For Moms, and her spirit animal is her cat, Sketchy.
Kandi Custodio-Tan, Program & Outreach Coodinator, known as DJ Kuttin Kandi, born and raised Queens, NY, is widely regarded as one of the most legendary, accomplished female DJ's in the world. She is also a Writer, Spoken Word Poet, Theater Performer, Educator, Hip Hop Feminist and Community Organizer. She is a member of DJ team champions 5th Platoon, CoFounder and DJ for the all female Hip-Hop group Anomolies, Cofounder of the famed NY monthly open mic nights “Guerrilla Words” and CoFounder of the coalition R.E.A.C.Hip-Hop (Representing Education, Activism & Community through Hip Hop. Djing for nearly 18 years, Kandi competed in over 25 DJ competitions such as ITF and Vibe Music Seminars. She is the 1998 NY Source Magazine DJ Champion and has been the only female DJ to make it to the DMC USA FINALs. Kuttin Kandi has been interviewed in numerous magazines and newspapers such as Source, Vibe, Vogue, YM, Rolling Stones, the New York Times, the Daily News and the Vibe Hip-Hop Diva’s book. Kandi has performed all around the world with artists such as Bob James, Kool Herc, Afrika Bambaataa, Jay-Z, Gangstar, LL Cool J, Mya, MC Lyte, the Roots, Young Gunz, Dead Prez, Immortal Technique, Black Eyed Peas, Common, Jean Grae, BlackStar and punk Riot Grrrl group LeTigre; just to name a few. Kandi has been honored and performed at venues such as the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Lincoln Center and at Madison Square Garden for WNBA’s NY Liberty. She is the Co-Editor for the newest book “Empire of Funk: Hip Hop and Representation in Filipina/o America”. She is also a known Pop-Culture Political Essayist and has written for several blogs and anthologies such as Dr. Kevin Nadal’s “Filipino America Psychology: A Collection of Personal Narratives”. Since 2007 Kandi worked at UC San Diego’s Women’s Center and specialized in programming and provides various lectures on diversity, gender & sexuality, race, abilities and etc. Kandi now resides in the Bay Area and is the new Program & Outreach Coordinator for Bay Area Girls Rock Camp. www.kuttinkandi.net
Voula O’Grady, Development Coordinator, is a graduate of Wesleyan University’s College of Letters and is the founder of the Creative Action Project (CAP), a program for teen girls focusing on creative expression and leadership development. Voula brings a wide range of skills and experience to BAGRC, including a background in arts education, curriculum development, community outreach, and volunteer coordination. She has completed over 200 hours of youth worker training and has coordinated fundraising projects for organizations including Community United Against Violence and Spontaneous Celebrations Art Center. She is passionate about the power of the arts to create change, and sells her art, craft and design work via her Gold Dust Studio line.
Board of Directors
Melissa Connelly, President, is a BAGRC camper parent whose daughter gained so much from the camp that Melissa joined the board to help the camp grow and thrive. Melissa is a social worker currently working for UC Berkeley's California Social Work Education Center, planning and revising curricula for training child welfare social workers in California.
Susan Donaldson, Secretary, is a rocker and mother of a future BAGRC camper. She sings in San Francisco's The Gun & Doll Show and has toured the globe as a performer in Gogol Bordello. She proudly holds an undergraduate degree in Studio Art from Mills College and an MBA in Sustainable Management from the Presidio Graduate School, and is currently the Director of Merchandise for eco-retailer, VivaTerra.
Ellie Erickson, Treasurer, is the Director of Operations at Community Works West and is a bass player with Erase Errata. She is currently seeking an MBA from UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business.
Lauren Hall has worked in the nonprofit/youth arts sector for the past ten years, currently working with young people in the Bay Area on their literacy and writing skills through 826 Valencia. She’s served as a program coordinator, event planner, grant writer and development director during her tenure at 826 Valencia and has been involved with BAGRC since 2008.
Lori Zook is a development manager with the arts management firm Quinn Associates, and has been involved with the Oakland and Bay Area arts and cultural community for two decades, including co-founding the Oakland Metro in 2001, serving as executive director of Oakland Opera Theater from 99-05, serving on the Oakland Cultural Affairs Commission, and serving on numerous funding panels, boards and committees. Her daughter Tasha attended the inaugural year of BAGRC, and Lori is delighted to be involved with this organization!
Kiran Nigam is an educator, facilitator, and artist with roots in California, Michigan, Iowa and Uttar Pradesh. Politicized through the Riot Grrrl movement in the mid-90s, kiran coordinated women's empowerment festivals and organized district- and county-wide for the right to high school gay straight alliances.
After living in the Berkeley Student Co-ops, kiran worked as the Director of Education and Training for NASCO, where she facilitated workshops for housing cooperatives across the US and Canada. Kiran spent three years teaching at a democratically run school, and has served on the Boards of NASCO and the US Solidarity Economy Network. She was a participant in the Cooperation Works! week-long training on the Art and Science of Cooperative Business Development. In 2010, kiran was inducted into the NASCO Cooperative Hall of Fame for her contribution and commitment to cooperative education and training.
Passionate about building healthy and sustainable organizations, kiran loves facilitating organizational retreats, strategic planning sessions and longer camps and trainings that allow for deeper growth, strategizing, and skills development.
Ingrid Hu Dahl directs all Next Generation (youth) programs at Bay Area Video Coalition (BAVC). Formerly a program officer of youth media and editor-in-chief of Youth Media Reporter at the Academy for Educational Development, Ingrid has extensive knowledge of the youth media field as an intermediary, leading a National Youth Media Summit in 2009 and the GFEM Investing in Youth Media funder briefing. She also has a history of working with youth on the ground, launching a middle grade "Youth Create Media Project" throughout the boroughs in New York City and Newark, NJ; and, she is a founding member of the Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls (Brooklyn, NY) where she teaches girls expression/empowerment through music and collaboration. Dahl lectures nationally and internationally on youth media, gender and music, and social change. She has also taught courses at Rutgers University on imagery and culture, media and pop culture, as well as created her own course on Riot Grrrl and public speaking at the Barnard Center for Research on Women. A musician over 12 years, Dahl has toured the nation, examining the intersections of race, class, gender and sexuality. She is currently in the bi-coastal band RAD PONY. Dahl is a board member of Women, Action and the Media and affiliated with The Op-Ed Project.
Essence Harden is a current graduate student in the department of African American Studies at UC Berkeley. Her work explores post Black Power articulations of Black masculinity through the lens of aesthetics. Along with serving on the advisory board of Bay Area Girls Rock Camp, Essence is an interviewer for the literary company RADAR Productions, and volunteers throughout Berkeley and Oakland public schools.
Jillian Sandell is an associate professor of women and gender studies at San Francisco State University. Jillian's area of interest include feminist cultural studies, popular cultures of the United States (including film, visual culture, music, literature, and activism); globalization and transnationalism; and anthology studies. She is currently completing a manuscript entitled "Transnational Ways of Seeing", which analyzes the proliferation of representations of globalization in contemporary U.S. popular culture and the forms of identification and disidentification they elicit. She is working on a second project that discusses feminist anthologies, exhibitions, and other cultural forms and genres whose central organizing principle is juxtaposition.
Maisha Davis is currently a UCSF medical student completing a dual degree program in public health at UC Berkeley. Originally from Los Angeles, she spent the bulk of her formative years in the Bay area, graduating from Stanford University in 2007 with a B.A. in Human Biology. Soon after, Maisha completed her pre-medical studies at Mills College and became enamored by the East Bay; its people, its sunshine, and Oakland most of all. Before matriculating to the UCSF , she spent much of her time entrenched in policy advocacy and community engagement efforts for California Black Women’s Health Project, a not-for-profit whose mission revolves around the health promotion for Black women and girls throughout the state. It was there she was introduced to the concept of reproductive justice and its conceptualization in urban, underserved communities of color. Since that time she has been involved in academic and extracurricular endeavors that center around “urban” youth, reproductive health, and community violence. Her current interests lie in developing novel interventions which call upon elements of traditional medicine/healing practices such as drumming, mindfulness meditation, and ethnobotany in such a way as to make them more accessible to today’s urban communities. Next year, she intends to apply to residency programs in Family Medicine and hopes to be able to stay in the area for both training and practice.
Shreya D. Shah, MPH, has been providing facilitation and education experiences for more than 9 years around the States. She is the co-founder of Rhizome Consulting Project, providing social justice-based facilitation, consulting, coaching, and mediation services. Shreya is passionate about creating healing and transformative conversations and spaces with/for LGBTQ and POC communities. She graduated from Columbia University with a Masters Degree in Public Health where her work focused on the built environment & health inequities. She is the TFC Judith C. Jones Fellowship Program Co-Coordinator, helping build the leadership of trainers of color as well as part of the 2013-14 cohort of the SiOP Institute, an intergenerational, national network of women of color. Shreya has been inspired by Process Work in shaping group & individual transformations. Shreya makes heart-filled visual art and sings and dances as much as possible.
Gabby Miller, is a graduate of Berkeley High School and Reed College, where she wrote a thesis in anthropology about experimental artists in Hanoi. Working with teens at The Oxbow School in Napa, as a co-organizer at Nha San Studio, the first experimental arts space in Vietnam, and at The Luggage Store Gallery in San Francisco, she is wholly dedicated to the transformative power of the imagination wherever she goes. She served as the Program and Outreach Coordinator at Bay Area Girls Rock Camp from 2012-2014, and is excited to stay connected to BAGRC through the advisory board.
Bios coming soon
Bay Area Girls Rock Camp is a nonprofit dedicated to empowering girls through music, promoting an environment that fosters self-confidence, creativity and collaboration.