Meet this year’s amazing Statewide Leadership Team!
Sarah Ryan is one of the newest members of the Statewide Leadership Team. She lives in Holbrook, MA where she actively participates with her local Chapter. In June, she testified at a local hearing to pass regulations on tobacco in her town. Sarah is also a choral singer, a journalist, and a student council representative. In her free time, she is an avid reader – her friends often joke that you’ll never see her without a book. She is very excited to work with The 84 Staff and make a difference in her community
Steven is a proud member of the Statewide Leadership Team. Hailing from Lawrence, MA, Steven joined the team in late 2014 and has been an active member ever since. He loves to work with computers and will work on projects like the 84’s Geofilter when procrastinating from working on homework or college essays. President of both the chess team and the coding club, he is a full-blown nerd and is proud of it! Give him a logic puzzle or a coding problem and he will spend hours trying to figure it out. Aside from his geeky roots, he is very passionate on youth advocacy and is excited to work with everyone to make a better future!
Makena joined the 84 team as a Statewide Leader in 2015. She was born and raised in Argentina, France, and Canada and then moved to Brookline in 2014. Now a Senior, Makena has had the opportunity to lead workshops with The 84 (including one at Northeastern University’s MLK Day), to organize and be a speaker at the 2016 Kick Butts Day, to participate in the 2016 MIT Hackathon, and to work directly with other young people at the 2016 Youth Power Summit. In her own town, Makena has worked very hard for over a year to pass a Warrant Article — and is more than excited that Brookline has voted to incorporate it into their by-laws! — that will enhance tobacco control regulations for reducing youth access. She now continues to work with the town as the youngest member of the Brookline Tobacco Control Committee. Makena’s goal in working to update legislature and advocate about the risks associated to tobacco is to give young people the time and space to educate themselves and make an informed, conscious decision about their lifestyle and their health. Beyond the realm of public health, Makena is also strongly passionate about Speech and Debate, filmmaking, making science puns with friends, and fencing.
Rachel Cohan is one of our youngest Statewide Leadership Team members at 14 years old. She is a freshman at Holbrook Junior Senior High School. Rachel plays on her school’s volleyball team in the fall and participates in the performing arts department year-round, in her choir, show choir, and the yearly musical. She got introduced to the Statewide Leadership Team through the local branch in her town, called Holbrook Cares. Although Rachel just got inducted, she can’t wait to start helping her community through being a part of the team!
Michael is one of the members of the Statewide Leadership Team. He was born and raised in Lawrence, and resides there. Michael is a student at Lawrence High school, where he holds many leadership roles. He holds positions of President and Vice President in his academy and whole school campus, and many other leader roles throughout the school and outside of school. Michael takes his role of youth leader very seriously. He recognizes the positive impact that his leadership can have on the youth, and feels that it is his responsibility to bring the best educational opportunities, events and enrichment programs to the students he represents. He joined The 84 Statewide Leadership Team with the hope of bringing the best to his community. Michael has participated in many leadership workshops and has earned the title of Youth Leader. He enjoys using his role as a leader to facilitate strength and courage to the youth. He strongly believes that young people in his community have the power to change the world, and that The 84 Statewide Leadership Team can be an instrumental part of that change.
Sherley Ortiz-Robles is a senior at Lynn Classical High School. She is a member of the Girls Inc. of Lynn Chapter for The 84 Movement, a peace activist for the Global Embassy, and a peer leader for Part of the Solution substance abuse prevention and education program. She loves to travel, meet new people and work for the greater good of her community. Whether it’s through framing public policy, starting a nonprofit for education, or building a school in a third-world country, her future dreams are full of passion with the one intention to pour her life out for service amongst her community for change at a local, state and international level starting with The 84 Movement.
Lillie is a senior at North Attleboro High School and has been a member of the Statewide Leadership Team since June. She loves working with her Chapter and the other Statewide Leadership Team members to fight youth tobacco use. In addition to tobacco-related issues, she’s also passionate about feminism and the environment. She enjoys playing field hockey, reading, and practicing Spanish in her free time.
Kayla is a Statewide Leadership Team Member for the 84. She’s a senior at North Attleboro High School and joined the Statewide Leadership Team in May! She also hopes to pursue a career in either public office or publishing in the future and is looking forward to starting her freshman year of college in the fall! In her free time (there’s not much of it), Kayla enjoys reading and writing, working at her local bookstore and sipping café mochas. She loves to travel, so far Italy is her favorite but loves all things the United Kingdom. Kayla loves elephants, the color purple and classic novels. She loves being a part of making history and helping to end teen tobacco use!
Havo Akobirshoeva is a new member of the Statewide Leadership Team. She was born in Tajikistan and moved here 6 years ago. She wants to travel more and is planning on visiting her home country for the first time this summer! She has a passion for any form of art and learning. Outside of school, she is part of a play and is a member of Waltham Youth and Community Coalition. During her free time, she likes to create short skits and trailers using her school iPad, she loves to draw, design, and paint. Havo is a supporter of animal rights, human rights, and safe environments. Her goal is to gain new skills and use those skills along with her old ones to make her community and the world a better place.