Rose is the Executive Director of the Community Agroecology Network (CAN) and a passionate advocate for amplifying the voices of youth and women to lead grassroots social change. At CAN, Rose engages in participatory community-based learning and action, and establishing strategic partnerships to further agroecology and food sovereignty at the intersection of gender justice, alternative economies and immigration. She is a bicultural, bilingual Latina and daughter of Colombian immigrants. Her doctoral research in Colombia focused on campesino and indigenous land claims under conditions of insecure land tenure, forced displacement and violence. This experience shaped her decision to work at an organization committed to co-creating knowledge with small farmers, migrant communities and the people most deeply connected to soil, land, plants, animals and growing food. Rose holds a Ph.D. from the Environmental Studies Department at the University of California, Santa Cruz, with a specialization in Latin American and Latino Studies. Rose was a fellow at the Agrarian Studies Program at Yale University, and serves as a Research Associate at the Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems (CASFS) at the University of California, and the Agroecology Livelihoods Collaborative at the University of Vermont.
Carmen J. CortezAssociate Director of CAN
Carmen is the Associate Director at CAN and is driven by her deep commitment to community processes of exchange, food sovereignty, and the connection of land, culture, and community self-governance. Through her involvement in research, community organizing and teaching, Carmen has developed multiple collaborations with farmers, scientists, and community member by co-creating agroecology and food systems courses in Santa Ana, Los Angeles, and Belize Central America. Through such collective learning experiences, community members and students compliment their own traditional ecological knowledge (TEK) with scientific knowledge on traditional farm management, land use, indigenous self-governance, alternative economies, and the economic and political realities of community land tenure in a globalized market.
Carmen holds a Ph.D. in Ecology from the University of California Davis Graduate Group in Ecology (GGE). Her dissertation work on human ecology focused on examining agroecological strategies used for intensifying milpa farming by Maya farmers and the impact of the formalized school system on time spent acquiring TEK by young people in the Maya region of Southern Belize.
At CAN Carmen supports with strategic planning on programing and fund development for collaborative knowledge production.
Maria Eugenia Flores Las Segovias Project Manager
María Eugenia Flores was born in Nicaragua in 1976 and grew up during a time of social conflict, struggle and changes. She studied popular theater as tool to help communities recover from the impact of natural disasters and graduated in 1998 from the UCA, Nicaragua with bachelors’ degrees in social psychology and humanities. She also has post-graduate certificates in anthropology and community development and sustainable organizational management. Finally, she has more than 15 years of experiences as a professional working for peace, women rights and participatory social development in Nicaragua and Central America.