Uplift is excited to introduce the newest member of our team: our recently hired Uplift Coordinator. We interviewed her so that you can get to know her a bit. Read on for her story!
Where are you from?
Hello! My name is Eva Malis and I am 21 years old. I grew up in the sunny suburbs of Los Angeles County and was fortunate to spend many of my growing years romping through the Eastern Sierras. I have spent the more recent years of my life in the SF Bay Area as a UC Berkeley student, and have experienced the Colorado Plateau through the Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program.
WHAT MOTIVATES YOU TO WORK WITH UPLIFT?
In my time as a student, I’ve learned that our power comes from rising together--especially for young people facing oppression. Coming together to learn, share stories, and be in community with each other might just be the most vital form of resistance and healing right now. That is why Uplift is so important--we must claim our collective power in the continued fight for all forms of justice.
I see the Colorado Plateau as a place with so much potential to set a precedent for the kinds of landscapes, policies, sustainable and just communities we want to see. Through Uplift, I cannot wait to work with youth on the Colorado Plateau to collectively shape the future of the region and the field of conservation itself!
YOU BRING SUBSTANTIAL ORGANIZING EXPERIENCE. CAN YOU SHARE WITH US SOME OF THE MOVEMENTS AND EVENTS YOU'VE BEEN A PART OF LATELY?
I spent the latter half of 2016 organizing the Power Shift West Convergence with the California Student Sustainability Coalition and the Power Shift Network. It was a gathering of hundreds of youth from around the western US to reshape and redefine the mainstream environmental movement into an inclusive, intersectional movement that centers the people most impacted by environmental degradation and climate change.
I also have spent the last two years organizing with the Students of Color Environmental Collective (SCEC), providing safe space and opportunity for students of color to be involved in environmental organizing. Recently, SCEC has partnered with Students with Standing Rock to provide support for the resistance of the Dakota Access Pipeline.
My first introduction to organizing was with Students Against Fracking and then the fight against Keystone XL. Ever since, I have been redefining what activism means to me in search of intersectionality and collective liberation.
WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE PLACE ON THE COLORADO PLATEAU?
It is so hard to choose a favorite! If I had to go with one, it would be Arches National Park. I was first introduced to the Colorado Plateau by reading Desert Solitaire, and was charmed by Abbey’s raw descriptions of his surroundings, so Arches holds a special place in my heart. My favorite arch is Double Arch! Other favorite places include Canyonlands, Monument Valley, and Sedona.
TELL US WHO YOU'RE READING RIGHT NOW.
I just started reading The Beautiful Struggle by Ta-Nehisi Coates. Favorites that I’ve read recently include The White Boy Shuffle by Paul Beatty, Lizard by Banana Yoshimoto, and Ceremony by Leslie Marmon Silko--would definitely recommend these for the soulful revolutionary!