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Staff

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Managing Director

Mohamed Attia

Mohamed Attia, SVP’s Managing Director, immigrated to the US from Alexandria, Egypt in 2008. He worked as a vendor for nearly ten years selling hot dogs, halal chicken and rice, and smoothies. He became a member of the Street Vendor Project in 2012, was elected to the Leadership Board, and served on the board until 2018, when he joined SVP’s staff. He lives in Bensonhurst with his wife.

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Development Director

Rachel Aimee

Rachel Aimee is SVP’s Development Director. From 2016-2022, Rachel was the co-founding executive director of Drag Story Hour NYC, a nonprofit that produces fun and fabulous, queer-affirming storytelling programs for children. Prior to that, she was a co-founding editor of $pread, a magazine that provided a platform for the voices of sex workers. Rachel is excited to bring her experience in development, community building, and uplifting marginalized voices to support the incredible work of the Street Vendor Project!

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Chinese-Speaking Member Organizer

Victoria Lu

Victoria Lu is a Chinese-Korean native of Queens. She’s currently studying at Macaulay Honors College at City College, majoring in Sociology and Political Science, with the goal of becoming an attorney. Victoria has been committed to student organizing with a background in both environmental and educational advocacy. As a person dedicated to improving and empowering working class and immigrant communities, she’s excited to work alongside the Street Vendor Projects as the Chinese-speaking member Organizer. She hopes to utilize her translation abilities and develop her organizing skills for the betterment of our communities! 

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Latinx / Spanish-Speaking Member Organizer

Eric Nava-Pérez

Eric Nava-Pérez is SVP’s Latinx/Spanish Speaking Member Organizer. He is a first generation Xicano community and labor organizer that believes membership led organizations are integral to the development of social movements and systemic change. Eric was born and raised in East Harlem, New York City.

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Lead Organizer

Jennifer Salgado

Jennifer Salgado is SVP’s Lead Organizer. She is the daughter of immigrant parents who migrated to the US from a small town in Guerrero, Mexico. For the past few years, she has been an education organizer in the Bronx and Brooklyn where she’s worked to elevate parent voices and bring their issues at the forefront in otherwise exclusive spaces. At the Street Vendor Project, she hopes to build power within the vending community to create longstanding change for Black and Indigenous People of Color and this way pay homage to her family, who turned to street vending when they first arrived in the states. Jennifer was born and raised in the Bronx where she currently still lives.

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Deputy Director

Carina Kaufman-Gutierrez

Carina Kaufman-Gutierrez is SVP’s Deputy Director. She brings experience in policy development, restaurants, and community organizing for equitable economic justice. At SVP she has worked to pass city legislation to reform the street vendor industry, pass state legislation to create a $2.1 billion relief fund for excluded workers, and initiated a food relief program during the pandemic that employed vendors to make healthy, culturally sensitive meals for​ distribution across the five boroughs. She has previously held positions at NYC Small Business Services, Community Service Society, and Fundación Corona. Carina holds a Masters in International Affairs and Urban Social Policy from Columbia University, and was recognized in City & State’s Labor 40 under 40 in 2021.

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Bengali Member Organizer

Rafi Islam

Rafi Islam is SVP’s Bengali Member Organizer. He grew up in Bangladesh seeing a lot of food vendors outside of his school gate and eating only street food for lunch and after school. That inspired him to stay connected with the vendors here in NYC when he moved here. And now he’s a Founding Member of JhalNYC which is a social entrepreneurship venture built to empower the Bengali New York community through food and employ stay at home mothers and new immigrants and help build their language skills and prepare them for careers they seek to transition to. Jhal connected him to SVP when they were in need of a Bengali Organizer. And now he educates and advocates the Bengali vendors in NYC with  SVP. Rafi’s favorite street food is Jhalmuri.

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Program Coordinator

Kendy Amaya Morfin

Kendy is an immigrant from Jalisco, Mexico who was raised in California's Central Valley. Both of her parents have worked in agriculture as farmworkers and growing up she was exposed to the various issues surrounding her community. She has collaborated in projects to provide immigration resources in the South Bronx and during the California midterm elections she provided voter resources through canvassing. Kendy also owns a small online business where she enjoys sharing her creative handmade jewelry. At SVP, she hopes to share what she has learned with small business owners. She holds a dual bachelor's degree in Global Studies and Geography with a minor in Public Policy from the University of California, Berkeley.

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West African Member Organizer

Mame Diarra Niang

Mame Niang is SVP’s West African Member Organizer. She is a Senegalese born and bred. Mame is dedicated to helping street vendors in Fordham and Harlem, along with communities that require her assistance. Mame will graduate from John Jay College with a B.A. in Criminal Justice and a minor in criminology in the spring.

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Legal Director

Matthew Shapiro

Matthew Shapiro, our Legal Director, grew up in Miami, where as a boy he was once ticketed by the police for selling mangoes by the side of the road without a license. He joined SVP on a fellowship in 2009, after graduating from Cardozo School of Law and the University of Florida. Matt recently spent a year in SE Asia on a street food sabbatical with his wife, Shari.

Advisory Board

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Megha Chopra

Megha Chopra is passionate about sourcing great food and championing small food businesses. In her current role at the New York City Economic Development Corporation, she is tasked with launching the New Essex Street Market, a historic community hub for affordable, accessible, and authentic food experiences. Previously, Megha was on the food team at Pret a Manger, and FreshDirect, where she worked with local food businesses to launch and develop new products. A lifelong New Yorker, Megha loves being a part of NYC’s vibrant food community and is committed to ensuring that we protect and support our city’s most vulnerable small food businesses – street vendors.

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Mandira Ghai

Mandira Ghai (she/her) immigrated from India to Pittsburgh, and a dosa cart led her to SVP in 2012.  She believes street vending represents the vibrancy of shared urban spaces globally and especially in New York City, and is essential in cultivating immigrant economic mobility and informing a more inclusive, compassionate cultural acumen.  With experience spanning tech, financial services, nonprofits, and higher education, Mandira is the inaugural project manager overseeing the Pinterest x Food52 Golden Recipe Contest, a call for diverse, sentimental recipes from around the country.  She serves as a career mentor for the Food Education Fund, was a research associate for the Museum of Food and Drink's latest exhibition African/American: Making the Nation's Table and a docent for Chow: Making the Chinese American Restaurant, and co-chairs culinary classes at the Park Slope Food Coop, where she is part of a group advocating for racial equity at the organization.  She is interested in the nexus between food, labor, access, and collaborative community empowerment.  

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Andrew Gustafson

Andrew loves sharing how the city works, especially its waterfront, industry, and infrastructure. In addition to developing and leading tours, he consults with cultural institutions on operations, interpretation, and accessibility, and he oversees knowledge management for Turnstile, maintaining the archive, library, oral history collection. Much of Andrew’s work focuses on the past and present of New York’s waterfront, and he is an avid shipspotter, birdwatcher, and paddler. Andrew is a member of the New York Council Navy League, American Institute of Architects (Allied Member), and the US Naval Institute, and he serves on the Advisory Board of the Street Vendor Project.

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Julie Torres Moskovitz

Julie Torres Moskovitz, AIA is an architect and founder of Fete Nature Architecture, PLLC (FNA) based in NYC. She began working with SVP in 2015 to help envision an exemplary commissary for the street vendor community. Her firm FNA is a vital, collaborative architecture firm whose process is founded in research and investigation of new ways to inhabit the urban fabric.  Julie is the author of a green architecture book and the architect of the first certified Passive House project in NYC. She believes that life happens in the streets and reflects the city’s spirit whether through street vendors, block parties, impromptu run-ins, or protest for environmental and social justice.

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Kelebohile Nkhereanye

Kelebohile Nkhereanye (Kele) is a food street vendor, food justice activist, community chef and leader in East New York. Kele is an immigrant from Lesotho, Southern Africa, where she learned the values of street vendors as opportunities toward economic empowerment. Currently, Kele works as a Station Agent for NYCTA. She is a committed member of SVP supporting efforts advocating for street vendors to remind New Yorkers to think of vendors as small business owners who need to work to support their families. She graduated from MCNY with MPA, Hunter  College with Sociology and Women’s Studies.

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Justin Pollack

Justin Pollack is a life-long patron of New York City vendors. He is a Managing Director at PineBridge Investment LLC, a global asset manager, where he focuses on private equity investments. Justin holds a B.S. from New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business. 

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Fa-Tai Shieh

Fa-Tai Shieh has been very interested in food issues around New York City since moving to the Big Apple.  He currently works for city government as the Director of Citywide Procurement.  Among his various responsibilities, he provides food for inmates on Riker’s Island, source food for the City’s emergency food programs, and feed dogs and horses of NYPD.  Fa-Tai also teaches part-time in the Food Studies program at the New School.  He is an experienced farmer and is currently the President of the board  at Added-Value, a non-profit that manages a 3-acre urban farm in Red Hook, Brooklyn. Fa-Tai is an immigrant from Taiwan and while growing up worked in his father’s seafood restaurant in Washington D.C. 

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Cheikh Fall

Cheikh Boubacar Fall is a veteran street vendor living in New York City since 2003. He emigrated from Senegal to live in the US in 1990 where he worked for the New York State Unified Court System while serving as a busboy, food runner, and waiter at Carmine’s Restaurant. In 1998 he joined the United States Armed Forces as a logistic specialist with two deployments in Europe where he served with honor and distinction. He then joined the Air Traffic Controller Aviation School where he soon after joined Naval Air Station Lemoore in Fresno, California. After serving, Mr. Fall used his business drive to open up a street vending business in New York City. It was through this work that Mr. Fall became engrossed in supporting local communities through various activism avenues. He served as a board member of the Street Vendor Project from 2005-2011 and he has served on the board of directors of the Mouride Islamic Community of America since 2015.

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Nick Gulotta

Nick Gulotta is a passionate community organizer with deep roots in advocacy and impacting change through local government. Nick's activism began early when he organized students in support of halal school lunch for NYC schools. After graduating from Hunter College, he worked for nonprofits focused on human rights, environmental justice, and voting rights. At City Hall, he launched programs to support community organizations and helped lead the City's fight against the Trump Administration's Muslim Ban and family separation policies. He later served as the Director of Organizing for the Mayor's Office of Immigrant Affairs where his team's nationally recognized campaigns connected tens of thousands of New Yorkers to safety net programs and free immigration legal services. Following the successful 2022 campaign to pass the NYC Racial Justice Commission's ballot proposals, Nick returned to government where he serves as a Chief of Staff in the City Council. He is also an adjunct lecturer at City College.

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Sari Kisilevsky

Sari Kisilevsky is a philosophy professor at Queens College CUNY who focuses on issues of ethics, business ethics, ethics of identity and immigration, and philosophy of law. She teaches classes in ethics, business ethics, feminism, and philosophy of law. She has organized workshops on philosophy of food and co-taught a class on Food and Identity. She has published articles in philosophy of law, just war theory, and Kantian political philosophy, and is currently researching ethics of punishment and ethics of food and identity. Sari’s work focusses on creating communities and economies that work for everyone and lift people up; she believes everyone has the right to work with dignity and participate in a community and economy that is built for their success. She has been working with the Street Vendor Project since 2019.

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Elizabeth Murray

Liz is the Chief Operating Officer for The Marlow Collective and a co-founder of Women in Hospitality United, a non-profit organization dedicated to reimagining the hospitality industry. She sits on the Board of Directors of the NYC Hospitality Alliance, the NYC Small Business Services Hospitality Council, the Emma's Torch Culinary Council, and the Urban Justice Center's Street Vendor Project Advisory Board. She lives in Brooklyn with her dog, Gristle Trout.

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Tatiana Orlov

Tatiana is an event producer, a community organizer, a senior team + project leader, an immigrant, and a mother. Her career has included leadership in community engagement, event planning + production, coalition building, policy + stakeholder-led advocacy strategy, partnership and resource stewardship, and program design + management — in issue areas spanning community-driven placemaking, local food economies + immigrant food ways, public market + street vendor advocacy, place-based sustainability + resilience strategy, and land + soil preservation. She has worked with City Harvest, the National Parks Conservation Association, American Farmland Trust, City Parks Foundation, and the Street Vendor Project, among other organizations. Tatiana now runs commonplace, her multidisciplinary events shop working to build community solidarity — through food, shared experience, and cultural practice. 

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Krishnendu Ray

Krishnendu Ray is the Chair of the Department of Nutrition and Food Studies at NYU. He is the author of The Ethnic Restaurateur (2016, Bloomsbury) and The Migrant’s Table: Meals and Memories in Bengali-America Households (2004, Temple University Press). He co-edited Curried Cultures: Globalization, Food and South Asia (2012, University of California Press). He is currently the President of the Association for the Study of Food and Society which is an international consortium of academic Food Studies programs. He thinks street vending is crucial to immigrant livelihoods and the liveliness of cities.

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Cindy VandenBosch

Cindy VandenBosch founded Turnstile Tours & Studio to create interactive and content-based experiences that foster engagement and interaction within and across communities in partnership with non-profit organizations in the neighborhoods of New York City. Cindy is passionate about offering experiences that are welcoming and accessible to people of all ages and abilities, and she has long been interested in socially-responsible business models, which led her to found Turnstile as a Benefit Corporation in 2012.

Leadership Board

Each year, our membership elects a Leadership Board of 16 deeply invested organizational members who are representatives of the broad membership and engage in organizational decision-making. 

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Mohamed Awad

My name is Mohamed Awad. I have been a vendor at Hudson Yards for more than a decade, way before the mall existed. I have dealt with major issues throughout the years, battling with real estate big bosses and harassment from different enforcement bodies. Fueled by my passion to defend my business, I want to bring this passion to the SVP leadership board and find solutions that will work for all vendors across NYC. I am committed to defending my fellow vendors and committed to fight for change. Thank you.

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Calvin Baker

My name is Calvin Baker. I have been a vendor on 125th Street for more than 15 years selling general merchandise. I am committed to advocating for the rights of vendors all over the city. I have done a lot of work on the ground supporting vendors and trying to find ways to ease the struggle. I see the work that SVP does as a key asset to the vending community and I think it's important to bring the voice of Harlem vendors to the table.

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Helen He

My name is Helen He. I am a street vendor from Flushing. I lost my job in 2020 due to the pandemic, and became a street vendor because of the immense pressure to support my family. In the beginning, I sold bread but it wasn't sufficient so I turned to antiques and eventually clothing, which earned me enough income and I gradually grew to like this job. With my previous business experience in China and the different products I've sold, I'm starting to think bigger. I hope everyone can elect me to join SVP's Leadership Board and become one of you. I hope to contribute to the overall street vending community and connect with vendors of different cultures and backgrounds and lead us to develop, innovate, and grow our businesses through our own efforts, so we can all live better lives.

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Emily Lam

My name is Emily Lam, and I'm a mother of two. I am a street vendor and I sell Chinese and Western antiques, as well as jewlery and accesories. I'm very honored and excited to run for SVP's Leadership Board and I will do my best and give my all for this work. I have been to marches and protests, and participated in meetings with local councilmember. I've felt especially deeply through these experiences from this past year. Although we couldn't accomplish everything we wanted, I've learned a lot and will continue to improve. I will do my best as a part of the Leadership Board.

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Alejandra Marin

My name is Alejandra Marin, I live in the Bronx, and I am a seasonal vendor on Jackson Ave. I started selling in 2021 because of the pandemic. I lost my job and was affected financially. This led me to street vending. I want to run for the Board of Directors, in order to fight for licenses and permits for all vendors without excluding any food or general merchandise. My motivation in achieving this goal is my father, who years ago sold flowers. On several occasions he received fines, confiscation of goods and much more. On one occasion, my dad cried when he saw what was happening to his merchandise and asked me if I was doing something wrong and I told him no that I was just doing an honest job and I hugged him tightly. That's why I want to be on the board of directors, to be able to achieve what we long for -- licenses and permits for everyone without excluding anyone.

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Sarai Rodriguez

My name is Sarai Rodriguez, I have been working for 7 years as a street vendor, for 2 years I sold food outside my house without a permit until I had the opportunity to acquire a push cart. Since then I have rented a permit for 5 years. I vend in Manhattan, on 30th Street and Broadway. I would like to be part of the leadership board to fight for permits, but I also want to be part of the board because there are many issues that are not talked about as much, such as garage rentals where there are many deficiencies.

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Vicente Veintimilla

My name is Vicente Veintimilla, I am 53 years old, I have been a vendor for more than 30 years, and currently I sell coins and banknotes of the world .NUMISMATIC, basically and alternate with general merchandise of the season. Being part of the leadership board of SVP is a real challenge, merging the experiences of the street with the knowledge that the SVP provides is a complement to ensure the welfare of the vending community. As vendors we have projects, aspirations and being the spokesperson for my colleagues motivates me to participate in decision making, as it is an imperative need to be able to disseminate our obligations and defend our rights.

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Jack Yan

Hello everyone, my name is Junhui Yan, or Jack in English. I vend Chinese antiques like ceramics and other artware. I am running for SVP's Leadership Board because I want to contribute and be a meaningful part of my community. This past year has been especially difficult and complicated for us street vendors, and I have led and organized vendors across Flushing to participate in rallies, marches, and other events like meeting with elected officials. Even though we couldn't achieve what we wanted in Flushing, I have learned a lot and am more knowlegeable when it comes to organizing for future actions and campaigns. I am looking forward to working with and learning from everyone here at SVP.

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Ramatu Baba

My name is Ramatu Baba and I have been a vendor for 10 years. During my time on the streets of Harlem and throughout the country, I have seen firsthand a lot of the struggles vendors experience. I join the leadership board and join forces with vendors all over the city. We all share the same struggles and the board is the perfect place to come to the table and discuss solutions together. Thank you.

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Xochitl Campos

My name is Xochitl Campos, and I sell a variety of products including Mexican candies, raspados, and prepared meals for gatherings like mole and pozole. I am a representative of Corona Plaza, and I have been a street vendor for 18 years. In addition to my work as a street vendor, I am also a healer who uses traditional, indigenous medicines and practices. I wish to be part of the leadership board to continue fighting on behalf of all of you for a better response to licenses and permits so that one day we will no longer be in the shadows and someday stand proudly as vendors.

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Cleotilde Juarez

Hello, my name is Cleotilde Juarez, I am an entrepreneur and I sell Mexican food on Junction Boulevard, Queens. I would like you to vote for me so that I can represent my comrades from my local area, so that their voice, their grievances, as well as their demands can be transmitted from their perspective. Like our comrades in other commercial districts, ours is considered a restricted street, we want more streets to work in and less restricted streets. Another concern we have is about garbage, there should be more garbage cans in the streets so that the public can properly dispose of their waste and not blame it on the street vendors. Lastly, I want to learn how one should communicate with fellow street vendors, as a leadership board member I want to be able to communicate with my peers about their duties as part of the community.

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Maria Angelica Castillo Luna

Good afternoon, my name is Maria Angelica Castillo. I would like to run again to be part of the leadership board because I have never liked the injustices that have been done to the vending community I have always fought for my community and I think we need to keep fighting to get the city to give us permits to work with dignity and while the work we have done has been strong, we have to keep fighting!

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Ahmed Mourad

My name is Ahmed Mourad. I work as food vendor in 3 boroughs and I know how dangerous and unsafe it is  to work at night in the Bronx, Manhattan, and Brooklyn, and I know how much tickets cost in Manhattan and I want make a big difference.  Knowing how hard it is let’s bring our challenge and solutions in our board to help our community to work in a better and save and easy environment. I am committed to open for changes that will make my colleagues' lives easier.

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Rosario Troncoso

Hello, my name is Rosario Troncoso, I am a general merchandise vendor at Corona Plaza. I would like to join the SVP leadership board because I want to learn more about how to support street vendors. I am also a good candidate because I have a lot to contribute on how the Corona Plaza street vendors association was formed.

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Theresa Wright

My name is Theresa Wright, a general merch vendor + business owner on 125th Street. I have been vending for about 3 years now. I have been to protests and been involved in meetings and love the sense of community that is fostered in these environments. I hope to be elected to the leadership board to further support my comrades on 125th Street and also explore how we can assist vendors all across the city.

Careers

Are you passionate about food, small businesses, vendor rights, or Social Justice? Check our our vacancies below, our team would love to hear from you!

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