FEEST Staff

Lisa Chen

Executive Director, lisa@feestseattle.org

By way of San Diego, Lisa is a first generation Taiwanese-American organizer that has focused the last ten years of her career on empowering working class communities of color in systems change work. She became politicized as a college student when she saw the contradictions of the University refusing to give their food service workers a living wage while at the same time raising student fees at an alarming rate. She organized student-led advocacy campaigns that related to access and affordability for low-income students of color, in-state tuition for undocumented students, and a fair union contract for service workers. She then moved to San Francisco to work at the esteemed Asian Law Caucus as a community advocate leading campaigns to end deportations of Asian undocumented youth and organize for comprehensive immigration reform at the national and state level. She landed in Seattle to work for a union that empowered housekeepers to advocate for better working conditions and livable wages.

Her political identity stems directly from growing up as the only child of an immigrant single mother where she saw first hand how limited English workers were treated unfairly. Her relationship to food is rooted in her experiences growing up eating Burger King and McDonald’s out of convenience and seeing the ongoing mental and physical health impacts. She has a special place in her heart for youth work, and believes deeply that transformative breakthroughs in young people will shift our communities to act from a place of love instead of anger. In her spare time you will find Lisa camping in the Cascades, trying new soup recipes, and patiently waiting for pumpkin season to roll in and feed her endless pie craving.

Misha Jackson

Outreach and Operations Coordinator, misha@feestseattle.org

Misha’s enthusiasm for life was ignited as a child riding horses and digging her fingers into rural Washington dirt. She took her passion for holistic community development and began working with young people as a camp counselor and mentor on a farm in South Puget Sound.

Growing up, Misha was fed a strict diet of instant oatmeal, Hamburger Helper and other ready-made foods. After venturing out into the world, she discovered the physical, emotional and spiritual benefits of real food. In turn, her inner activist was awakened. She devoted her studies to food systems, particularly the way we think about food in our schools. Misha believes wholeheartedly in the power of youth-driven solutions and is thrilled to be joining the young people at FEEST as they work toward manifesting their dreams.

Look closely and you might find Misha meandering down a side street in search of a snack unless she’s off somewhere writing poetry and watching the clouds.

Becca Meredith

Development Manager, becca@feestseattle.org

Becca comes to FEEST with six years of non-profit and organizing experience in the Seattle area. Previously she was Community Engagement Program Manager at Forterra where she worked throughout South King County on food access and policy change. Becca is passionate about the intersections of health and justice and is thrilled to be joining the FEEST team as Development Manager to support youth empowerment and food justice systems change.

As an organizer, Becca educates and organizes white folks for racial justice. Locally she is on the leadership team of the Coalition of Anti-Racist Whites and nationally she works with Showing Up for Racial Justice.

Becca grew up in the PNW and is blessed to have a big family and strong community around her. In her free time you can find her making sauerkraut, spending time outside or learning to play the piano.

 

Zumi Mizokami

Dinner Coordinator, zumi@feestseattle.org

Zumi is a trans/queer martian Yonsei, originally from the deserts of LA.  He used to aspire to be a fashion designer but by way of life, he’s taken his rocket through the worlds of political theater, sci-fi filmmaking, sexual health education, queer youth organizing, worker organizing, and kitchens.

For over a decade, Zumi has been navigating being a restaurant worker while being queer, femme, trans, androgynous, and masculine (all of these expressions simultaneously).  As a worker in many hierarchical kitchens, he has aimed to evolve kitchen culture to be zero percent racist, misogynistic and patriarchal, and in return two hundred percent about connection and creativity.  Although this has always been a steep challenge, it has been a survival practice.  In a previous Los Angeles restaurant, Zumi was able to build worker solidarity with his co-workers and eventually launched a worker organizing campaign that successfully pushed back against wage theft and disrespect in the industry.  He learned that there is infinite power in the people, that worker justice is food justice, and that we have a lot more transforming to do.

Zumi is forever dreaming of making food with people he loves, for people he loves, and is stoked that he gets to do this in the FEEST kitchen.  He sees that young people of color are bursting at the seams with brave and radical creativity, and is so honored to be in the realm of this magic.  With lots to learn, and lots to explore, Zumi is a hungry creature with wide eyes and a grandpa spirit, SO ready to revolt in love with ya’ll.

Thuy-Mai Nguyen

FCYO Organizing Fellow, thuy-mai@feestseattle.org

Thuy-­Mai Nguyen first fell for FEEST after consistently stalking their website 2,000 miles away. Typical modern­-day love story. She had been making home in Providence, RI for the past seven years where she played rugby, found life-long friendships, and mentored youth with talks of future. Having grown up in a working class immigrant household, Thuy-­Mai found her political passion in access to post-­secondary education for first-­generation and low-­income students of color. Whether the options after high school are workforce development, trade school, college or otherwise, she is dedicated to advocating for the agency and autonomy of young adults to be able to choose their own life paths. Joining FEEST, Thuy-­Mai is amped to continue working alongside youth in demanding a more just future for our bodies, minds and communities.

In any free moment, you can find Thuy-­Mai eating through Seattle’s International District one steaming­-hot-­bowl-­of-something-­obviously-­awesome at a time. Phở, Bibimbap, Szechuan hotpot – you name it.

Elizabeth Ortega

Program Manager, elizabeth@feestseattle.org

Elizabeth Ortega is a mixed-Latinx who found her way to FEEST from the hot borderlands of the Southwest desert.
Her FEEST crush began when she worked at the Youngstown Cultural Arts Center as a teaching artist where her nose was hit with the smells of food and her ears perked to sounds of TLC. She peeked into a scene of young people bumpin’ and cookin’ up some magic and the story began.

Elizabeth has roamed the PNW for 6 years working with young people, getting her graduate degree and finding adventure at every turn. Wanting to follow in her father’s footsteps of being the first to go to college, she found herself studying social movements, power and privilege in ways she’d never done before. She is deeply curious about how to decolonize our minds, hearts and spirits AND how to find joy and celebration in this life.

Her journey of being woke and learning how to dismantle systems of oppression and create beautiful alternatives has been filled with the love of community, the natural world and remembering to play again. She is constantly awed by the power of imagination, art, young people, grassroots people power and vulnerability.

You might find Elizabeth carving linocuts with some tea, adventuring in the woods with loved ones, or excavating bookstores to find more books to pile on the already tipping “to be read” pile.

Recent blog posts

Find out the latest news from FEEST participants and staff.

GiveBIG on May 10th

Will you join us? GiveBIG is on May 10th   Celebrate and support your favorite nonprofit through GiveBIG! Schedule your gift today or donated on the BIG day May 10th. The first donations up to $1000 will be matched by our amazing sponsor Bellwether and thanks to...

May 9th: Make Food Make Fam

Join FEEST on May 9th for our second annual Make Food Make Fam! This is a fun, informal event for the FEEST family cook, eat, share stories, experience the FEEST magic and celebrate everyone who supports FEEST, from parents to teachers to community partners to...

March FEEST Newsletter

Happy Spring from FEEST! We hope the season of change, rebirth and transition is treating you well. We are in the midst of lots of action at FEEST and we are excited to share stories from recent adventures. Taste the Rainbow Salad Challenge  FEEST recently hosted a...

FEEST on Instagram

Follow us @FEESTSeattle! We cultivate youth food justice leaders. Join us at Chief Sealth H.S. and Evergreen Campus!

Show FEEST some love!

Youth are in the lead at FEEST because we know that change is not effective unless those most impacted by health inequities are the decision makers. Support youth leadership by donating today, OR sign up for our newsletter to get the latest from FEEST!

Donate nowSign up for our newsletter