Staff & Board

November 8, 2010


    Diana Copeland, Co-Director

    Diana has an extensive background in environmental justice advocacy, environmental project management, and community organizing. Mrs. Copeland earned her BS in Environmental Science and Tribal Natural Resource Policy at The Evergreen State Collegewatershed management at University of Washington Program in Streamside Studies, and her MS in Environmental Justice at the University of Michigan. She worked in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, connecting community leaders to solve environmental and health challenges in Rio's favelas (autonomous communities) before coming to EMEAC. She has been very active in forming coalitions between environmental organizations, community and environmental justice groups to win environmental justice and health victories. email: Diana

    Ife Kilimanjaro, Co-Director

    Ife, Co-Director of the East Michigan Environmental Action Council, has worked to strengthen organizations, institutions and efforts by and for black and brown people for the past 20 years. After completing her doctorate in sociology (focusing on race/class/gender relations and philosophy) at Howard University, Ife moved to Detroit to support teaching and learning at Michigan’s only historically black college – Lewis College of Business – as department chair and vice president.  Recognizing a need to support learning at younger ages, she served as principal of an African centered public school academy.  During that time, Ife was part of a team that launched University of Kmt Press, which later gave rise to African International, an online resource for left-of-center analyses of issues facing African people.  Upon leaving her educational leadership post, Ife returned to the grassroots activist realm of her earlier days and assumed various logistical roles during the planning and implementation of the U.S. Social Forum in Detroit.  In 2010 she joined the staff of EMEAC and has represented the organization in a variety of local, state and national coalitions; continues to participate on the Gender Justice Working Group of the USSF; serves on the board of directors for the Grassroots Institute for Fundraising Training and the U.S. Climate Action Network; assists local organizations behind the scenes to meet organization and funder-driven goals and reporting requirements; and supports groups and people seeking to do what is just and right toward the transformation of society. She is a mother and grandmother, student of life and history, reiki practitioner and life-learner of herbal medicine and natural healing. email: ife

    Dee Collins, Finance Director

    Dee joined EMEAC in 2012 as Finance Director.  With over 30 years experience in finance and accounting, she has worked for various non-profits in the Detroit Metropolitan area. Dee has also volunteered for numerous churches and non-profits to help with bookkeeping challenges. email: Dee

    Priscilla Dziubek, Senior Engagement Program Coordinator
    Priscilla is a community activist involved locally in the international struggle for water as a human right, held in the public trust, as a precious resource.  She is coordinator of our inter-generational gardening program, Gardening Angels, and instructs environmental labs within Detroit Public Schools.  She is a master composter and was instrumental in establishing the Barbara Jordan school garden.  Currently, Priscilla is planning gardening activities for the summer months that will involve both students and community seniors.  email: Priscilla

    Sonya Green, Multicultural Environmental Science and Arts Lab Coordinator

    Sonya, spiritually known as Sanaa Nia-Joy, is an informal educator with the EMEAC Greener Schools program. Prior to returning to Detroit and beginning her role at EMEAC, she worked with youth groups in Washington, DC. She is a graduate of Howard University and a Ecopsychology Masters degree candidate in Naropa University's Transpersonal Psychology department. She is also a Reiki practitioner, Belly Dance instructor and nature lover. All of her work enhances the goal of helping people express their brightest self and have a closer relationship to the earth both of which will be healing for the earth and humanity. email: Sanaa 

    Charity Hicks, Food Justice Task Force Program Co-Coordinator

    Charity is a native Detroiter, and was raised on Detroit’s lower eastside right off of the Detroit River which contributes to her love for the environment. She is a Master Gardener through Michigan State University- Extension, a member of Sierra Club, the Great Lakes Water COMMONS group, and several other environmental/ecological groups. She works as a Policy Fellow with the Everyone at the Table for Health (EAT4HEALTH) initiative of the Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation (New York) and the Praxis Project (Washington D.C.) working on equitable food & agriculture policy for urban communities. She is also the Policy Director at East Michigan Environmental Action Council (EMEAC) helping to empower the Detroit community to protect, preserve, and value the land, air and water. Previously in her food system work, she was the lead person on the team which wrote the City of Detroit Food Security Policy (2008) and the articles for the establishment of the Detroit Food Policy Council (2009), and was the initial community engager/facilitator of the Detroit Food Justice Taskforce a collaborative of 10 community based groups, and local activists in Detroit formed in 2009 to work in the food system and urban agricultural movement to promote a justice centered food system. email: Charity  

    Kim Sherobbi, Community Partners and Facility Coordinator

    Ms. Sherobbi is a retired school teacher and community activist. For 26 years, she taught physical education for the Detroit Public Schools. Her involvement in metro Detroit neighborhoods has span for over 20 years. Kim has volunteered for numerous non-profit and government agencies such as Adams Butzel Recreation Center, Reggie Mckenzie Foundation, Money Matters for Youth, Detroit Parent Network, Birwood Block Association and Detroit Impact. She is excited about helping EMEAC build stronger relationships with the community. email: Kim 


    2013 Board of Directors

    • Victor Arbulu - Treasurer
    • Hugh McDiarmid Jr. - President. Environmental Journalist
    • Bill McNight - Member, First Unitarian Universalist Detroit 
    • Odessa Murphy - Marygrove University, student; youth activist
    • Nick Schroeck - Wayne State University Law School, Professor
    • Dr. Mike Spencer - University of Michigan, School of Social Work, Associate Dean