Whole Community Project Team Members
E. Jemila Sequeira brought more than two decades of experience in community development, social work, and advocacy for the concerns of those with limited resources, to her work a director of Whole Community Project during the five years of the Food Dignity project. Sequeira's work with the project involved citizens and leaders from communities of color and low-income households, to engage in conversation and action aimed at addressing food security in the county. She was appointed civic fellow by the Cornell Public Service Center in 2009 for launching Gardens for Humanity, a community driven initiative that provides support for neighborhood gardens and hands-on gardening education programs for youth. In 2009 Sequeira also co-founded the Congo Square Market, a seasonal market with the mission to build a stronger self-reliant local community, and to develop a robust economy in Ithaca’s historically Black Southside neighborhood. Sequeira established Tompkins County’s first outreach program for homeless and transient youth from rural and urban settings. She earned her Master’s degree at the School of Social Welfare at the State University of New York at Stony Brook.
Damon Brangman was a Community & School Garden Nutritionist, and Media Specialist at Cornell Cooperative Extension Tompkins County. He taught gardening and nutrition to local high school and elementary students, consults with community gardens in the Upstate New York Fingerlakes region, and also did media production for the WCP and the Food Dignity project.
Damon grew up in Bermuda, a small island in the Atlantic Sea. He tended a family garden at a young age, and as a teenager he really enjoyed teaching younger kids about gardening. His first job was farming and landscaping with his great-uncle during summer breaks from school. He also worked closely with one of the larger organic farms on the Island. In 2014 he created Roots Rising Farm for educational farming purposes, and is enrolling at Empire State College studying Public Health and Nutrition to further his studies in nutrition.