Bus Riders Union: Meet the nominees for the 2013 Planning Committee!

After two months of nominations it's now time for the 2013 planning committee elections. The Bus Riders Union Planning Committee is the leadership and decision making body for the union. It is made up of 5 volunteer members who serve for one year, and 4 LCSC staff members.  There are 10 candidates running for election this year. Each candidate has written a short statement to introduce themselves to the membership.

The Nominees for the PC are:

Ellis ArklissEllis Arkliss: He has been a member of the Bus Riders Union since 2011 and he served on the 2012 Planning Committee. "Personally, I want every single member of the BRU to put their all into the efforts of the organization...Let's try to form an action committee where we can train other members to be the best organizers around. It [BRU] is a place where people are investing in my education and leadership development, where I have developed a hunger for learning and have greatly deepened my commitment to being better and making society better." to read the complete statement


Aracely Barboza: She has been a member of the Bus Riders Union since 2009.Aracely Barboza "Before being involved with the BRU, I didn't know about civil rights, especially transit racism and how we as bus riders are entitled to our Title VI rights! I've become more conscientious about different struggles and have taken action by speaking at MTA board meetings on reinstating our million hours of bus service, organizing on the buses, attending press conferences, and, more than networking, building strong relationships with our allies." to read the complete statement


Ronald Collins

Ronald Collins: He has been a BRU member since 2006 and has also particpated on the Clean Air Action Committee. "If elected, I intend to concentrate on member recruitment especially focusing on college students, movement building by working closer with existing allies as well as finding new allies, and diversifying our organizing approach by finding new tactics in our fight for transit justice. By gaining new allies and working closer with the allies we already have, we can start to build a stronger movement and ensure that we keep winning critical victories."
to read the complete statement


Joanna Gaspar: She has been a BRU member since 2009 and has served on the Planning Committee in 2011 and 2012. Joanna Gaspar"I am ready to keep contributing with more ideas to keep the members as active as possible. I also have ideas about having more workshops, teach-ins, political education where members can learn and teach those same subjects to others outside the organization. Through this exchange, we can strengthen our members' abilities as strong leaders and learn from members of allied organizations about the work they do. That way, we can gain a clearer understanding of why we as the BRU support their work." to read the complete statement


Juan HernandezJuan Hernandez: Juan has been a BRU member since 2011 and is a graduate of the 2012 Clean Air University. "I got more involved in the organization because the BRU is involved in many struggles, not only public transit but all aspects of the lives of poor people and the oppressed class. I believe that learning and personal improvement must be ongoing and are key parts of creating new visions and challenges for an organization. During the last year and a half, I've attended meetings, actions, and training workshops with the BRU and I have learned many new things."
to read the complete statement


Lawrence Lancaster: He has been a BRU member since 2011, and participated in the Speaker's Bureau. Lawrence Lancaster"I feel a grassroots organization is only as strong as the people who greatly benefit from the movement. Working together with like-minded allies in a grassroots movement will give a greater voice and political presence to those communities where in the past their voices have been silent."
to read the complete statement



Michelle LopezMichelle Lopez: She has been a BRU member since 2009 and has served on the Planning Committee in 2011 and 2012. "I learned that we must understand other struggles faced by different communities so we are able to connect with allies working outside of our specific issues. Personally, it made me learn that whenever faced with a challenge, it is another opportunity for growth and to improve on our weaknesses. One of the biggest political lessons I was taught from the recent No on Measure J campaign was the impact of building coalitions and what a united front can do!" to read the complete statement


Bianca Sadi: She has been a member of the BRU since 2011 is a graduate of the 2012 Clean Air University.Bianca Sadi "My exposure to the fight for better human conditions influenced my views on the need for people to mobilize together and make change happen. I knew then I would always want to be part of the struggle against injustices. I want to be a model to my children on the importance of organizing to fight for human rights.to read the complete statement


Steve SamayoaSteve Samayoa: He has been a member of the Bus Riders Union since 2011 is a graduate of the 2012 Clean Air University.: "Let us also not forget the ever present, but often hidden-until-they-strike corporate mosquitoes, the real estate firms and contractors; these mosquitoes fly over our already hemorrhaging neighborhoods, killing off our transportation lifelines: our buses that take us to work, school, and our families. The BRU was my outlet to fight back, to let them know that there is a force willing to fight against transit racism."
to read the complete statement



Beverly Taylor: she has been a BRU member since 2011 and is a member of the Mailing Committee and the Speaker's Bureau.Beverly Taylor "I have learned that our organization also supports and works on LGBTQ rights and gender justice, both of which are very important to me and our membership. The environment is near and dear to my heart and our polluting ways are going to be the death of us all if we don't inform the public about our wasting and polluting and our plans to bring about an environmentally just transit system."
to read the complete statement