On July 1, 2020, Ali Knight was appointed the new President and CEO of FLY after our Founder and CEO of 20 years, Christa Gannon, moved into a formal Founder role. He explains the focus of this new era at FLY: using our energy and resources, and lifting up the voices of our youth, to disrupt the pipeline to prison and help further bend the arc of the universe toward justice.
On Wednesday, June 24, the Oakland Board of Educators voted unanimously to eliminate its police department. OUSD was the only district in the county with its own school police force. This victory was the culmination of years of work in the community with leadership from Black Organizing Project and the youth of Oakland. FLY’s Alameda County staff and youth strongly supported their work and contributed to the effort’s success.
FLY is honored to publish an open letter from June Wang, Vice Chair of our Board of Directors, about her perspective as an Asian American supporting the black community. She also includes a list of writings and references that have helped her learn about systemic racism.
FLY is unequivocally and unambiguously pro-Black in this moment. We acknowledge and support Black people who have been killed, who have lost family members and friends, who live in fear for their lives and the lives of others, who are protesting and risking their own safety, and others in their communities who are affected by police brutality.
FLY is 20 in 2020 October 2020 will mark exactly 20 years since the first FLY law class was taught by Christa Gannon. At the time, Christa was FLY’s only staff member and she worked with a handful of volunteers to serve youth in a few neighborhoods in San Jose. Today, with 65+ staff, 200+ volunteers, and a growing list of programs, FLY serves approximately 2,500 youth annually throughout the Bay Area. We’ll celebrate this coming October with our longest-running supporters and stakeholders, then with all of the FLY Family at our Showcase event in December. Systems Change FLY believes