Ameer (Lead Speaker)
Ameer is a graduate of UC Berkeley, with a bachelor’s degree in African American Studies. Ameer also holds a Masters in African American Studies from UC Berkeley and is currently working towards earning his doctorate in African Diaspora Studies. His research explores Reality Television as a social phenomena, and how its effects on the perception of Blackness outside of a televisual space. Ameer has conducted research for Harvard University’s Du Bois Institute for African and African American research (The Hip-Hop Archive) and currently works with Harvard University’s Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice on a series of summer forums. Ameer also received the University of California Berkeley 2011 Graduate Council Advisory Committee for GSI Affairs, Outstanding Graduate Student Instructor Award.
Carmen Perez is something of a Renaissance woman in modern-day activism. In her years of work, the executive director of The Gathering for Justice has touched on many of today’s important civil rights issues, including mass incarceration, gender equality, and community policing. From working with young women as a probation officer to helping organize labor activism, she hasn’t shied away from any challenge. Carmen Perez has been an activist nearly her entire life. After the death of her 19 year-old sister when she was just 17, Carmen began dedicating her life to creating programs and initiatives that would help transform the lives of young people. As Executive Director of the Gathering for Justice, Carmen has crossed the globe promoting peace, advancing human and civil rights, and building alternatives to incarceration and violence while collaborating in national policy presentations. She has organized cultural, spiritual and educational events and provided support to individuals incarcerated in juvenile detention centers and inside California’s and New York’s prisons. In November 2013 she founded Justice League NYC, a task force of juvenile and criminal justice advocates, experts, artists, and formerly incarcerated individuals brought together to build “Growing Up Locked Down” (GULD) a at The New School in September 2014. Justice League NYC led a 250 mile, 9 day March2Justice from NYC to DC to deliver The Justice Package to Congress – 3 pieces of federal legislation to end racial profiling, stop the militarization of the police and invest in our children and protect our communities. Carmen has gained respect as an expert in the field of juvenile and criminal justice and system accountability, and in that capacity has appeared on CNN, MSNBC, NY1, CNBC, CBS and been featured in articles in the NY Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal and more. She recently testified before the President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing as a criminal and juvenile justice reform expert.
Mariela Regalado is a Bilingual, first generation, Dominican immigrant. She is a College Counselor for Juan Morel Campos Secondary School in Brooklyn, NY. Her goal is to help change the landscape for students of color attending institutions of higher learning. She works towards empowering the youth by providing them with tools to achieve their post-secondary goals and career readiness. Currently, 90% of her Senior class(es) attend college upon graduation.
Mary Caba is the daughter of two Dominican immigrants. She graduated as Valedictorian from Juan Morel Campos Secondary School. She is attending CUNY: John Jay. She is a College Coach at her former high school, where she is able to help students that sit in the same seats she once occupied. Mary plans on becoming a full time college counselor after she graduates college. Her goal is to start a college and career counseling organization in the Dominican Republic in order to address the high illiteracy rate and lack of formal education.
Real Estate investor, Entrepreneur
Jay Morrison, also known as “Mr. Real Estate”, is a successful real estate developer, celebrity realtor, author, TV personality, entrepreneur and social activist. Jay is the CEO and founder of the Jay Morrison Brand which is the parent company to Tulsa Real Estate Fund, a $50MM regulation A tier 2 real estate fund, Jay Morrison Real Estate Partners, a real estate consulting firm and the Jay Morrison Academy, an online real estate investor’s school and mentorship program.
Despite being a high school dropout, an at risk youth and three time felon, Jay made a major life transformation for the better over a decade ago that not only made him a millionaire before the age of 30 but also propelled him into the national spotlight. He now uses his life experiences and personal story of triumph to empower and impact the lives of thousands of his Academy students, troubled youth, ex-offenders and real estate professionals throughout the world.
Doctor Natural is a holistic health educator who from the age of 6 has been an outspoken opponent of the killing of animals for food, clothing, or sport. From a very early age, he has sought to inculcate in himself and others a profound spiritual awareness of our connectivity to nature and a sense of inquisitiveness in search for ways to fully realize our divine purpose and presence.
Since the age of 15, Doctor Natural has been a strict vegan and has developed a strict methodology for assessing the “who”, “what”, “when”, “where” and “why” of food preparation and consumption. What started as a dare for a young man named “George Gittens,” became a lifelong purpose for that same young man whom everyone began to refer to as “Brother Natural,” due to his consistent adherence to consuming only the best of what nature offers.
Doctor Natural graduated from Bishop Loughlin Memorial High School where he was noted as most popular student. He went on to receive a Bachelor’s of Science degree in chemistry from S.U.N.Y. College at Westbury. He was also elected to serve as a member of the Student Government. Due to his life’s work, the community that he serves gave him the title “Doctor Natural.”
For over 30 years, Doctor Natural has been an ardent student of the art of natural healing and holistic health. He is an experienced chemist and medical technologist. In addition, he has a wealth of experience as a support group counselor, yoga and meditation instructor, fitness and motivational speaker. Through years of challenging the “status quo” and seeking to impart true knowledge, Natural has developed finely honed skills in the area of critical, analytical, objective and intuitive thinking. He is a strategist, an organizer of people, a planner and a master in the art of networking. Notwithstanding all that he has accomplished, Doctor Natural considers his greatest achievement to date is “that after being self-taught in natural healing for over 25 years, I now effectively teach people how to heal themselves.”