Alchemist CDC

A Catalyst for Change

Alchemist CDC - A Catalyst for Change

Staff & Board


Tiffany Rosso, Executive Director

Tiffany picTiffany Rosso recently joined the Alchemist CDC Team as Executive Director in 2017. She has over 20 years nonprofit experience and has held many different roles in the organizations she has partnered with. Her professional accomplishments include nonprofit development, volunteer and events planning, and program development. She has worked for several Bay Area and Sacramento-based nonprofits, including Off the Mat – Into the World, March of Dimes, and California Musical Theatre. Tiffany volunteers actively in her community to raise awareness and funds for local and global causes.

Tiffany received her BA in Environmental Studies from San Jose State University and earned her Masters of Nonprofit Administration from University of San Francisco. She is passionate about her nonprofit work and provides tools and resources to empower organizations to build capacity and scale programs to maximize mission impact. She takes a collaborative approach to nonprofit management and aligns her work with her core values of integrity, community engagement, and sustainability.

Davida Douglas, Programs and Operations Director
Davida was Alchemist’s first employee. She oversees programs and manages the day-to-day operations of the organization. Davida came to the organization with over ten years’ experience working with non-profit organizations, as well as several years with a private community outreach firm, and general business management experience. She is originally from rural Missouri, and has been a Sacramento resident for over 18 years, currently residing in the Oak Park neighborhood. Contact Davida at 916-204-8260 or by email: davida(at)alchemistcdc(dot)org

Emma Burke, Farmers’ Markets Program Coordinator
Emma works on our CalFresh: Connecting Families to Farmers and Market Match programs, including volunteer and intern recruitment and coordination. Emma is a recent graduate of California State University East Bay where she received her Masters in Public Administration and Policy. While attending graduate school, Emma worked in the public sector as a nonprofit strategic planning consultant and as an organizer for the California Faculty Association. She is excited about bringing her passion for community development and nonprofit work together at Alchemist.

Jacob Sacks, Administrative Manager
Jacob assists with all programs on the administrative side. He graduated with a B.A. in Political Science from UC Davis in 2011 and has experience working at public interest law firms. In addition to having a passion for social justice issues, Jacob is also passionate about Red Sox baseball, cooking and travel. 

LaTisha Sohai, Healthy Communities Program Coordinator
2017116 Tisha website picLaTisha conducts educational tours related to nutrition and food access at neighborhood grocery stores. She also provides CalFresh booth staffing and outreach support for our CalFresh: Connecting Families to Farmers and Market Match programs.
LaTisha is a Sacramento native and holds certifications in Health & Wellness Education, Food Service Management, Culinary Arts and Medical Assisting. After moving to Denver for college she returned home in 2015 and has worked extensively with multiple nonprofits.

Shelly Smith, Farmers’ Market Associate
Shelly staffs the CalFresh booth at the Galt Market, and as a long-time Galt resident, is passionate about serving her community.


Humphrey Manacsa and Christine Russo: Green Alley Project

Elliott Froissart and Kristin Jacobs: Pansy Ave. Community Park and  Garden Project

CalFresh: Connecting Families to Farmers Program interns:
Kristin Jacobs – Midtown Farmers’ Market
Emily Lovell – Central Farmers’ Market

To find out more about internship opportunities with Alchemist CDC, click here.

Board of Directors

Elizabeth Smoker, President
Holding an M.S. in Food Systems and Society from Marylhurst University, Beth is a Policy and Communications Consultant for the California Climate and Agriculture Network. She also consults for the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, contributing to research on their Agroecology Knowledge Hub, and serves as Vice Chair on the Sacramento Food Policy Council.

Beth has volunteered with numerous nonprofits: helping market managers at farmers’ markets and teaching cooking and nutrition classes in low income communities. Prior to joining Alchemist’s board, she helped us facilitate the use of CalFresh benefits at farmers’ markets. Beth also loves to experiment in her own kitchen, baking homemade bread and pickling anything she can get her hands on.

Shawn Mainville, Vice President201751 Shawn for website
Shawn is a CalWORKs Employment Policy Manager with the California Department of Social Services. He has worked in his time at Social Services with county partners, Community Based Organizations and advocates to implement policies that increase CalFresh program access. A Sacramento native, Shawn received a Bachelor of General Studies from Arkansas State University in 2000, and was a member of the 2013 cohort of the Boards and Commissions Leadership Institute, conducted by the Sacramento Housing Alliance. Shawn lives in Tahoe Park with his nine-year-old daughter and ten-year-old greyhound. In his free time he enjoys fishing and riding with the 2nd California Cavalry living history reenactors.

Jamie Cutlip,Treasurer
Jamie is a Local Government Affairs Representative at SMUD. She has an extensive background spanning 15 years in government and nonprofits including community planning, economic development and environmental advocacy. She holds a B.A. in Urban Studies from San Francisco State University, and is a former board member of the Northern California Solar Association. As a former Associate Planner with the City of Sacramento, her expertise extends from permitting/entitlement reviews to sustainability program management and policy development focused on green building, solar permitting and infill development. When not exploring new campsites or wineries, Jamie resides in Sacramento with her husband and two dogs.

Mariko Yoshihara, Secretary
Mariko is the the Legislative Counsel and Policy Director for the California Employment Lawyers Association.  She works on legislation, education and outreach, and amicus briefs, to help advance and protect workers’ rights in California.  In 2015, she helped pass the Fair Pay Act, giving California the strongest equal pay laws in the nation.  She is also the board chair of the Center for Workers’ rights in Sacramento.  In law school, Mariko studied health law and food policy, which helped develop her interest in food access and food justice work, and steered her toward Alchemist.  In her free time Mariko enjoys volleyball, soccer, and traveling.

Jamila Bebe Khan
Born and raised in Sacramento, Jamila is the Content and Social Media Coordinator for Sacramento365, the year-round source for events. Jamila is a graduate of the University of California, Davis Community and Regional Development program, where she first was introduced to Alchemist’s work. Before joining the Board in 2011, Jamila worked as an stipended intern at the nonprofit’s Bryte and Broderick urban farm stand in West Sacramento. In her free time, Jamila loves to add new stamps to her passport, attend community events, discover new music, and try out new recipes in her kitchen.

Colin Bailey
Colin is the Executive Director and an attorney at law at The Environmental Justice Coalition for Water. He received his J.D. from the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Law, where he participated in the Program in Public Interest Law & Policy and the Critical Race Studies concentration. He lives in Sacramento with his wife and two daughters.

Arwen Chenery
Arwen is Chief of Staff for Assemblymember Al Muratsuchi. A graduate of Mills College, Oakland, Arwen holds a B.A. in European History, and a Certificate of Scottish Art and Literature from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. With over 20 years of experience in the political field, her most recent positions include principal policy consultant (transportation and housing) to the Senate President pro Tempore, Darrell Steinberg.  She has also held manager, field, and fundraiser positions on a number of local and statewide campaigns.  A native of Toronto, Canada, she currently resides in Sacramento with her husband and cat.

Dave Kempa
Dave is a freelance journalist and Adjunct Professor of Journalism at American River College. Holding a B.S. in English-Creative Writing and M.M.C. in Journalism & Mass Communication, Dave earned a Robert F. Kennedy Award for Journalism for his 2009 exploration on why southern Mexico’s young men continued to risk their lives crossing the United States border. He serves on the board of 916 Ink, reports on poverty, arts and life in the Sacramento region, and even sets aside time for creative writing of his own. In his free time Dave enjoys running, soccer, crosswords and disappearing into foreign lands.

Sarah Dillon
Sarah is the Development Director for Wellness Within, a nonprofit that provides support services to cancer patients in the Greater Sacramento Area, and has previously worked doing field organizing for political campaigns. Holding a B.A. in Urban Studies & Planning from UC San Diego and an M.S. in Food Systems & Society from Marylhurst University, her love of urban spaces and food justice brought her to Alchemist. Sarah loves yoga, climbing, traveling and attempting inbox zero, and lives in Midtown with her 11 houseplants.

Stacy Towles

Stacy is an accomplished project management professional backed by 10 years of experience across nonprofit and tech industries. She earned her MBA from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas and her BA from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. For the last 5 years she has led global teams to complete high profile projects at Intel Corporation. The projects and campaigns she managed vary from updating health benefits specific for transgender employees, to managing a speaker series that included Olympic Gold Medalist Allyson Felix discussing faith as a career guide.

Stacy is also an essayist, poet and performer. The audio books she narrates and her own writings have similar themes; human interest stories, strong female lead, urban characters, or personal development.

 Tamara Srzentic
Tamara is the Outreach and Communications Director for the California Department of Public Health.