CAFwd Radio: Forward Thinkers sound off

150 150 Gina Baleria

The CAFwd Radio show invited some of our esteemed Forward Thinkers on to the show to go in-depth about how they are making a difference in their communities. Listen to each of their interviews below.

The statistics were against Forward Thinker Nyeisha DeWitt. A high school dropout from Oakland who faced violence, a lack of parental support, and a drug-filled neighborhood, she somehow found her way back to education. Now, as founder of Oakland Natives Give Back, Program Director of Citywide Dropout Prevention at Oakland’s Promise Alliance, and candidate for Oakland City Council, Nyeisha works to help kids break out of the cycle that claims many and almost led her down the wrong path.

For the basketball program Forward Thinker Wornel Simpson started in Sacramento, points scored and games won aren’t the only signs of success. Instead, one of the statistics he’s most proud of is the rise in the grade point average of his players, aged 12-16. Team Sage – Scholar Athletes Globally Emerging – is helping young people excel at a sport they love, while achieving in the classroom, as well.

As a police officer in Vallejo, Forward Thinker Tony Pearsall did his best to protect and serve the community… but he knew that real success would be found by connecting more directly with the community. So, he co-founded Fighting Back Partnership, to help establish that direct link and get the community involved in preventing crime and improving the quality of life.

Forward Thinker Jennifer Waggoner wants to combat the polarized, vitriolic political landscape that too often dominates the discussion. As president of the California League of Women Voters, she works hard every day to ensure voters can get fair, balanced, trustworthy information, and that they participate in the democratic process.


Gina Baleria

All stories by: Gina Baleria