OneLife Institute is blessed by the servant-leadership of some amazing individuals. Their profiles, below, offer only a hint of the gifts of heart and experience they bring to all that they do...
Liza J. Rankow(Board Chair; Co-Spiritual Director) is an interfaith minister and the founding director of OneLife Institute. She holds a B.A. in Human Development from Hampshire College, Bachelors and Masters degrees in Health Sciences from Duke University School of Medicine, and a Ph.D. in Religion and Social Transformation from Union Institute & University.
Rankow practiced as a PA in pediatric hematology-oncology at Duke Hospital before receiving grants from the National Institutes of Health and the American Cancer Society to address health care access issues for marginalized populations of NC women. She worked as a trainer and consultant for medical professionals, Dept. of Health and Human Services (DHHS) agencies, and community based organizations in the provision of culturally competent care to diverse populations, and developed extensive resources for community and professional education.
Liza has provided spiritual counseling and offered classes and workshops in spiritual development for over 20 years. She is a popular speaker and teacher known for bringing compassion, creativity, and insight to the process of individual and cultural healing and transformation. As a scholar and activist, her main interest is exploring the powerful synergy between mysticism and social change. She maintains a special emphasis in the life and work of Dr. Howard Thurman, teaching a variety of classes on Thurman in both academic and community settings. Liza is producer and co-editor of the six-CD audio collection, "The Living Wisdom of Howard Thurman" (Sounds True, 2010). Currently she is working on a book examining the theological and paradigmatic context of "mystic-activism" from an interfaith perspective, and offering practical applications of this wisdom for the critical issues of the present day.
Jakada Imani (Board Member; Interim Treasurer) is the Director of Capacity Building Initiatives at the Center for Polular Democracy, a national organization working to create equity, opportunity, and dynamic democracy through partnerships with high-impact community-based organizations. Previously he served as Director of the Ignite Institute at the Pacific School of Religion (PSR) in Berkeley, CA, where he worked to train, support, and inspire spiritually-rooted changemakers to be more resilient, creative and aligned in their work.
Before PSR, Imani served for six years as Executive Director of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights. After taking over from the organization’s founder, Van Jones, Imani led the Center's campaign to pass federal legislation (the Green Jobs Act), and led four successful state-wide ballot measure campaigns (No on Prop 6 in 2008, No on Prop 23 in 2010 and Yes on Props 30 and 39 in 2012), and launched the Center's newest effort -- a goal to reduce the US incarceration rate by 50% in ten-years. Before becoming Executive Director, Imani was a lead strategist and chief team member on some of Ella Baker Center’s most high profile campaigns.
Jakada also Serves on the Board of the Comption Foundation and is a member of the Church for the Fellowship of All Peoples.
Born and raised in Oakland, California, Jakada is father to four powerful and creative young girls. You can read his articles on Ella’s Voice as well as on the Huffington Post. Follow him on Twitter at @jakada_imani.
Kamal Hassan(Board Member; Co-Spiritual Director) is a spiritual leader, educator, and community servant. He currently serves as Pastor/Teaching Elder at the Sojourner Truth Presbyterian Church in Richmond California, a position he has held since 2008. Before this call Reverend Hassan spent more than three decades as both a public and private school educator, community organizer and religious worker. He holds an AA degree in Radio Broadcasting from Los Angeles City College, a BA in History from California State University Los Angeles, and a Master of Divinity degree from the San Francisco Theological Seminary.
Kamal is a founding member of both the New Afrikan People’s Organization and the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement. He has worked for social justice and Human Rights locally, nationally, and internationally. He was also a volunteer programmer of a regular liberation focused program on radio station KPFK the Pacifica affiliate in Los Angeles for 10 years.
He firmly believes that, "Spiritual Communities must be critically engaged in the effort to mend the tear in our social fabric that has allowed so many of us to focus on our individual needs and ignore the sufferings of others. To be true to our prophetic calling, we must act locally for justice, freedom, and peace while considering the global implications of our commitments. At the same time we must each pursue our inner and outer journeys of faith."
Rev. Hassan considers it a great honor have been invited to serve on the Board of OneLife Institute.
Kazu Haga(Board Secretary) is a certified trainer in Kingian Nonviolence and the founding director of East Point Peace Academy. He also sits on the board of PeaceWorkers and Communities United for Restorative Youth Justice (CURYJ), of which he is a co-founder.
Haga was introduced to the theory of Kingian Nonviolence in 2008, and has been an active trainer since the summer of 2009. He has conducted trainings and workshops throughout the country in high schools, detention schools, county jails, community organizations, and for many other diverse communities including in the Occupy movement. He has been active in various movements and campaigns for social chance since he was 17 years old, when he embarked on an 18-month journey with Nipponzan Myohoji, studying nonviolence and social change throughout the United States and South Asia.
Kazu began his work at the Peace Development Fund in 2002, eventually becoming Program Director. In his 10+ years working in progressive philanthropy, he managed the Peace Development Fund’s grant-making portfolio, as well as coordinating two capacity-building initiatives working with formerly incarcerated communities and communities impacted by the nuclear cycle. He also served on the founding Steering Committee of the Bay Area Justice Funders Network.
He has had roles with many other organizations, including having served as the Bay Area Coordinator of the Positive Peace Warrior Network, National Convention Coordinator and later Executive Committee member of Harry Belafonte’s The Gathering for Justice, Program Committee Clerk of the Western Massachusetts AFSC, a co-founder of the Western MA Nonviolence Trainers Network, development committee member of the Intertribal Friendship House, and coordinator for the Prison Book Project.
Leah Kimble-Price(Board Member) is a community healer from Oakland. She is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with over a decade of experience as a psychotherapist and clinician in community mental health. Leah is the owner and operator of Lotus Liberation Clinical Services, providing mental health counseling to children and families. She also serves the community as a Clinical Supervisor of Therapeutic Behavioral Services Lincoln. For more information about her clinical work, check out lotusliberation.com and follow her on social media @lotusliberationoakland
Leah holds a BA in Psychology and an MS in Clincial Psychology, both from San Francisco State University and studied under the strong influences of Dr. Wade Nobles, Dr. Oba T'Shaka, Dr. Dorothy Tsuruta, and Dr. Johnetta Richards.
She is the community liaison/media coordinator for the Therapists of Color (TOC) Bay Area support community and has enthusiastically served as facilitator of TOC's monthly Consultation Group in 2013, 2014, and currently, for 2016. You can learn more at therapistsofcolor.org.
Leah strongly believes in fostering mental emancipation within communities of color and other oppressed groups. She considers it her life's work to aid in the emotional liberation of children of color and those who love them.
As a third generation daughter of Oakland, Leah stands on the shoulders of giants, specifically her parents Wanda Jean Price (iba e) and Hillard Stewart (iba e), her vibrant and effusive grandmother, Electra Kimble Price, and her great grandmother, Clyde Hill Kimble (iba e).
Ms. Kimble-Price is humbled and inspired to be invited to serve the community in this new role on the Board of OneLife Institute.
E.N. Hill- pronounced "Ian" (Organizational Outreach & Program Support Contractor) is a Masters of Divinity student with a focus on multi-religious studies and liberational ministry at Starr King School for the Ministry in Berkeley, CA. They hold a B.S. in Interdisciplinary Studies from Liberty University of Lynchburg, VA with concentrations in Aeronautical Science and Spiritual Coaching.
E.N. served in the U.S. Air Force for 15 years before answering the call to ministry. They have been deeply involved to movements for equality and restorative justice in both the military and civilian communities. For over 10 years, E.N. has been an advocate for LGBTQ liberation as well as a leader in events supporting African-American Heritage, Women's Equality, Differently-abled Employees and Sexual Assault Survivors. In 2014, they were recognized with a regional level award for exhibiting innovation, commitment and a selfless spirit of service to others while significantly improving the integration and expansion of opportunities for people with marginalized identities in the military.
E.N. considers themself a "Spiritual Activist," a compassionate/loving, optimistic agent of change, blended with a balance of justice seeking, interdependence and self determination.
E.N. is married to Dr. Aja Hill, who is also a committed practitioner of community healing and empowerment, and they have a made a home in Oakland for nearly 10 years.
Our Wonderful Volunteersare vital members of the OneLife Institute team! You can find photos and profiles of many of our core volunteers in a special album on our Facebook page,linked here.
And to learn more about how YOU can volunteer,click here.