SPOKES Youth Advisory Board
SPOKES are the decision-makers, vision bearers, and spirit of what Youth Speaks does. SPOKES is a Bay Area cohort of youth leaders who have love for their community and passion in their craft. SPOKES is a paid position that works directly with Youth Speaks staff to build community and receive artistic and leadership development through hosting, curating and leading event and workshop spaces.
SPOKES 24-25 applications due Monday, July 25 by 6pm
My name is Rena Yamamoto. I am 17, and from the Mission district of SF! This is my third year on the SPOKES cohort. I am a visual artist and writer excited to explore the intersections of art, culture and identity. As a Japanese-Jewish young person, I am always looking for community in dif debt sectors and spaces.
Rose America Garcia is a 17 year old Nicaraguan-American poet from San Leandro, California. For the past 5 years, her poetry has been defined by resilience and advocacy. From heartbreak to harassment, Rose’s poetry encompasses the challenges of navigating through adolescence. She was recognized for her poetry as a 2023 Alameda County Youth Poet Laureate Finalist. In her junior year, Rose was one of the founders of her school’s poetry club. As a SPOKES member, Rose hopes to provide a healing and creative space for young poets throughout the Bay Area. In her free time, you can find Rose at the Walgreens photo department, listening to music, or searching for inspiration in nature.
My name is D.B. Moments and I’m from Antioch, California. I’ve been making music since I was 7 years old, but just started taking it seriously as of December 2020. Since then, I have competed in Rap competitions, went viral multiple times on TikTok and Instagram, and networked with some of the biggest names in the game. My biggest inspirations are J.Cole (for his lyricism), Drake (for his Versatility and relatability), and BabyTron (for his punchlines). Now, my goal is to use my skills and personal life experiences to create music that can relate to the Masses. I want people to hear my songs and get chills, I also want people to relate to me as a person, so any emotions I put into my art will maybe be a place for someone to visit knowing they are not alone.
Yzabel Lam (pronounced iZ-uH-belle) is a Chinese-Filipino poet and change maker from San Francisco, CA. Currently a junior at the Ruth Asawa School of the Arts, Yzabel is deeply immersed in the world of poetry and is constantly exploring different performance styles. With a passion for social justice, they utilize their knowledge to inspire individuals to find their voices and speak their truth on stage, in hopes of bringing on the culture of spoken word into the next generation. Through their involvement with Youth Speaks, Yzabel aspires to compete in slams and refine their craft.
Lauren Lin is a senior in high school and a poet-activist. She is the inaugural Burlingame-Hillsborough youth poet laureate and inaugural San Mateo County youth poetry ambassador. She believes in our communities to rectify the past towards healing when we listen and speak with empathy. She founded and leads Words for Change (@wordsforchange2363), a coalition of young writers and leaders eager to use spoken and written language for social change. She LOVES the Office, Taylor Swift, the Bee Movie, and so much more!
Julia is a 15 year old poet from Berkeley. She is a sophomore and the president of her schools SLAM club. Her poems frequently utilize rhythm, slant rhyme, and alliteration to explore topics such as femininity, identity, and religion. She is excited to build her writing and leading skills on SPOKES and work to better Youth Speaks! When not writing, you can find her playing or coaching Ultimate Frisbee, baking, or playing guitar.
Mei Chung is a 14-year-old poet from San Francisco who joined SPOKES because poetry and spoken word is something that she couldn’t live without. She aims to inspire people with her poetry and help other teens feel heard and understood. Mei is also a singer with the Young Women's Choral Projects of San Francisco. In her spare time, she enjoys playing guitar and hanging out with her two cats. She is the youngest member of SPOKES and hopes to make a positive impact on the world with her writing.