Meet our Staff

Being interviewed at the Ford School Garden for that Highlands History Project.

David Gass

Director

Raised in Lynn, David went to Antioch College in Ohio, participating in the civil rights and anti-war movements. His goal was to be a community organizer. He worked 10 years in machine shops in Cleveland in the labor movement. He graduated with a BA in American history in 1983.

 He returned to the North Shore with his wife and sons to build houses, then worked for community development corporations (cdcs) in Somerville and Boston on affordable housing. He directed LINC, a cdc in Lynn, creating award-winning housing/offices on Union St. He helped found the Highlands Coalition at the Ford School in 2006.
From an immigrant family, he would like new arrivals to share in Lynn’s wealth and power, not in its poverty. Education and good health are pathways out of poverty. Community schools working with neighborhood groups empower residents. As Frederick Douglass, former Lynn resident, taught: It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.

Yonerky Santana

Community Organizer

Born in the Dominican Republic and brought to the U.S at the age of nine, Yonerky is a health science major at North Shore Community College. In 2010 she was the lead organizer for the Student Immigrant Movement (SIM), working for equal access to higher education for immigrant and undocumented students. She helped hundreds apply for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival. She works with nonprofits and churches fighting for human rights, equality and social change. She worked for Fair Shot.

 


Tanveer Malik

A human rights activist, social worker, HR advisor and film maker, For 15 years he worked with United Nations agencies, USAID and government organizations, raising awareness about crimes against women and children. He founded South Asia Peace Institute for Conflict Management. He manages large teams and humanitarian projects.  He has masters degrees in Mass Communication and Computer Science. He founded (Pakistan Human Resource Network), specializing in the human aspect of planned change and the American Refugee Council. Read more on his Official Website