Stand up loudly and boldly

by José Luis Gandara

José Luis Gandara is a 2020-2021 Benest Fellow at Joint Venture. Originally from Seattle, Washington, José is a freshman at Stanford University. He is passionate about state and local policy and has studied gentrification processes in San José, wildfire policy in California, and rent assistance in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. He is currently pursuing a Bachelor's degree in Public Policy with a concentration in Urban and Regional Policy and he is also considering a double-major in Economics.

Illustration of Summer Taylor

On July 4th, I lost my cousin, Summer Taylor (they/them), after they were struck by a high-speed car that drove into a Black Lives Matter protest in Seattle. They worked full-time in a vet clinic but for the past several weeks had used any time off to protest against police brutality and in solidarity with Black lives. They dedicated their life and what privilege they had to make the world a better place. Summer is my hero and role model for what antiracist white allyship really looks like.

Read more: Stand up loudly and boldly

Write comment (1 Comment)

From the Farm to the Fellowship: A Stanford Student Discusses Joining Joint Venture

by Lukas Lopez-Jensen

Lukas Lopez-Jensen

Back in September, I took a Stanford class on regional politics in Silicon Valley with President Hancock (Russ, as I know him). Within weeks, I was transfixed by the intricate, beautiful, hot mess that is the Valley. It was the only class of mine that allowed me to engage directly with agents in the real world—city council members, Google workers, and local activists—and learn about their issues in ways much more compelling than the internet and textbooks can offer.

Read more: From the Farm to the Fellowship: A Stanford Student Discusses Joining Joint Venture

Write comment (1 Comment)

A Time for Systems Thinking

by Robin Martin

pancakes on plates on a tray

The kiddos made us chocolate chip pancakes in bed!

Had this pandemic not shaken the US food system to the core, I would have spent the next few years happily chugging along in my own lane - supporting the food recovery organizations of Silicon Valley and working on next steps for our area around new laws for food recovery. Now it's impossible to ignore how interconnected we all are as humans, how interconnected all our work lives are, and how changes in one corner of the food system ripple out to affect the rest of us.

Read more: A Time for Systems Thinking

Write comment (0 Comments)

About the Blog

There's something about a crisis that brings people closer together. The Joint Venture Blog was created on the heels of the COVID-19 pandemic as we shelter in place. Stepping outside our usual structure, the blog is intended to provide an informal window into the people and the inner workings of the organization. Please feel free to jump in with your own comments.