Meet the Policy Entrepreneurs
kier blake is a second-generation Jamaican organizer who is dedicated to disrupting the status quo in climate education. At Next100, kier will work to expand access to interdisciplinary, justice-centered climate education in New York’s K–12 schools. kier’s approach is informed by the lack of climate education they received learning in Los Angeles and while working in New York City schools, despite living in a community disproportionately impacted by climate change.
Cheyanne is a fierce advocate for young people with child welfare involvement. At Next100, Cheyanne is developing innovative, sustainable solutions that address the root causes of housing instability among youth in, and transitioning out of, the foster care system. Her advocacy is fueled by her personal journey in foster care in New York, which has given her a profound understanding of the challenges and systemic barriers faced by youth in similar situations.
Sofie is a tenacious advocate for foster youth and cash transfer programs, driven by a deep commitment to ensuring every young adult has their basic needs met. At Next100, her work centers around dismantling systems that dehumanize, and replacing them with initiatives that empower and uplift, especially for foster youth and the unhoused. Sofie’s personal experience with homelessness fuels her passion for policy change.
Derrell is an unwavering advocate for justice-impacted young people and emerging adults, an expert in criminal justice reform, and a champion for community transformation. At Next100, Derrell’s work focuses on removing barriers for young people in the justice system and decriminalizing poverty. As a justice-impacted individual and a child of incarcerated parents, Derrell is determined to shape a brighter, more just future for communities like the one he grew up in in Baltimore.
Rudrani is a storyteller and an advocate for migrant rights, hailing from the city of Kolkata, in India. At Next100, she focuses on increasing access to affordable and dignified housing for refugees and asylum seekers. Shaped by her experiences as a first-generation immigrant from a low income family, Rudrani also works to expand economic stability and educational resources for migrant communities.
Chantal is an advocate for students involved in the foster system, working to ensure they have the school support they need to succeed. At Next100, Chantal’s work focuses on improving academic outcomes and narrowing the opportunity gap between students in the foster system and their peers. Chantal draws on her experience as an education attorney working directly with students and families impacted by the foster system and seeks to see schools as sources of support, encouragement, and care for this unique and vulnerable population.
Nia is a labor organizer and economic policy researcher who centers racial equity and intersectionality in her approach to policy development. At Next100, Nia works to increase labor bargaining power and uplift corporate accountability movements that center racial and social equity. Driven by her early exposure to the Occupy Oakland demonstrations and participation in the Fight for $15 campaign as a youth activist, Nia is unapologetically taking the fight to corporate villains and standing up for the workers left in their wake.
Next100 is powered by The Century Foundation, a progressive public policy think tank that celebrated its 100th birthday in 2019. To mark its centennial, TCF launched this one-of-a-kind, independent think tank for a new generation of policy leaders. Next100 represents a continuation of TCF’s century-long commitment to elevating the best ideas and most diverse perspectives, and pursuing policy research with purpose.The Century Foundation
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