Rashanda Bruce (she/her) is a cofounder of LOCUS and recent graduate of Mitchell Hamline School of Law. She will join Fox Rotschild LLP as an associate in the Minneapolis office this fall. During law school, Rashanda served as a judicial extern for the Honorable Katherine Menendez and the Honorable Sara Grewing. She also was a student attorney in the Child Protection Clinic and Innocence Clinic, and served a one-year-term as Co-President of the Black Law Students Association.
Prior to law school, Rashanda was a Mass Tort Paralegal at Robins Kaplan LLP, where she worked on large product liability cases. She has coached cheerleading for over a decade and currently serves as the Program Director and Head Cheerleading Coach for the Apple Valley Elementary and Middle School teams, where she instills and builds confidence and pride in young girls.
Kristell Caballero Saucedo (she/her) is the Senior Program Associate for the Racial Equity Initiatives at Borealis Philanthropy. As a low-income, first-generation immigrant woman, her work is committed to social justice that puts race and kyriarchy [a social system or set of connecting social systems built around domination, oppression and submission] at its nexus. Most recently, Kristell was a Ron McKinley Philanthropy Fellow at the Bush Foundation where she was responsible for managing grants for the Community Innovation Program. She has also worked as a consultant to foundations and nonprofits on racial equity and inclusion and community-led work.
Kristell holds a B.A. in Political Science and Spanish from St. Olaf College. She worked as a New Sector Alliance Fellow and later as the Racial Equity Project Manager at Northside Funders Group where she led and created a racial equity framework and toolkit. As a Fulbright Scholar in Mexico, Kristell focused her research on Afro-Mexican rights. She spent a year working on anti-racism nonformal education at Phiren Amenca, an International Roma Rights organization based in Hungary. Kristell is a salsa dancing enthusiast and Crossfit addict.
Lindsay Pluger (she/her) is a nonprofit professional with a great deal of experience with youth leadership and community engagement. Currently, Lindsay is at Breakthrough Twin Cities assisting in programming and operations logistics for the nine-week summer program at the Mounds Park Academy site.
Prior to Breakthrough Twin Cities, Lindsay’s experience nonprofit leadership experience has been as a Program Manager at Students Today Leaders Forever (STLF). STLF provided Lindsay the space to create & implement, as well as train others on programming at partnering nonprofits, middle schools, high schools, and colleges nationwide.
In addition to the LOCUS Leadership Team, Lindsay also serves on the board for Leaders of Today and Tomorrow (LOTT).
Thet-Htar Thet (she/her) is originally from Yangon, Myanmar and moved to Minnesota five years ago to attend Carleton College. She earned her Bachelor Degree in Political Science/International Relations and Education and has always been interested in the intersection between social justice, racial equity, education systems and politics.
Currently, Thet-Htar works as a College Possible Coach at Highland Park High School, where she works with low-income, predominantly students of color, to provide support and resources to access college. With College Possible, she is additionally a Recruitment Ambassador and works on the National Committee on the Treatment of Others Policy – working towards College Possible’s commitment to diversity and inclusion.
Outside of her work, Thet-Htar enjoys writing creative non-fiction and poetry about life and all its wonderful and chaotic things.
Diane Tran (she/her) is the founder of Minnesota Rising and LOCUS, and the Senior Director of Community Engagement at HealthEast, a part of Fairview Health Services.
Previously, she provided strategic consulting services at Grassroots Solutions, directed Minnesota field activities for the Pew Charitable Trusts’ program to advance federal clean energy policies, and coordinated a local public health advocacy campaign to advance the Freedom to Breathe Act of 2007, a statewide smoke-free workplace policy protecting Minnesotans from the harmful effects of secondhand smoke.
Diane serves on the boards of The Saint Paul and Minnesota Community Foundations, Minnesota Humanities Center, The College of Saint Scholastica, and Propel Nonprofits.