Building Bridges Staff

Adrian Cabezas
has been the Program Coordinator for the Building Bridges After School Program for the past two years. He was born in Los Angeles and made his way up to the bay over 10 years ago for his undergraduate education at UC Berkeley--GO BEARS!!  Adrian has had several jobs since graduating, including working at a non-profit that advocates for universal preschool in California, subbing in San Francisco and Oakland Unified, and teaching History and Civics/Economics for a year at St. Liz High School in the Fruitvale District.

Martha Gonzalez is in her second year working with the after school program Building Bridges.  She worked with 1st and 2nd graders last year, and this year she will continue with the same grades.   Martha will tutor the yellow group, teach one sports class (track), and lead the Girls Circle this year.  When she is not working, she enjoys spending time with friends and family.  She also enjoys reading, playing soccer, and listening to music.  Right now, Martha is also doing volunteer work for CRECE (Refugee Committee for Central Americans).   She is a soccer coach for girls ages 6-15 and she really enjoys offering young girls an opportunity to become active and healthy.  In the future, she hopes to work towards getting a masters’ degree in Clinical Psychology and hopefully travel.  Martha is very happy to be back and to be a part of these children’s learning experience and hopes to have another very successful year.

Alia Ghabra
has been at Bridges for two years.  Last year she had a 1st/2nd grade homeroom and taught Art to 3rd – 5th graders.  This year, Alia has the 3rd graders for homeroom and teaches the Garden, Writing, and Storytelling classes.  When she is not working, she loves to play music (guitar and drums), write, draw, paint, read, garden, do home projects, study Arabic and watch movies.  Alia is also a collective member and organizer with Arab Resource and Organizing Center in SF and the Bay Area Campaign to End Israeli Apartheid.  She is from Lancaster and San Diego, CA; but she has definitely found a home in Oakland, where she has been living for the last 3 years.  Next year, Alia hopes to teach English in the West Bank, Palestine and to live in Damascus, Syria with her father’s family.  When she return to the States, she will hopefully be getting her teaching credential and continuing her work with Oakland youth.  Alia is excited to be a part of our community, and she looks forward to another successful year at Building Bridges After-School Program.


Roberto Lascon is a tutor in the Building Bridges After-School Program.  This will be his third year teaching the 4th/5th grade class.  He is also the Sports Coach for the 3rd/4th/5th afterschool students.  This past summer, Roberto graduated from Chabot Community College in Hayward.  He will transfer to a University in the spring.  When he is not working or studying, he likes to play and watch sports, read, make and listen to music, watch movies, and play video games (but only when he's done with his homework).  Roberto was born in Hayward and was raised in Union City.  He moved to Oakland three years ago.  Roberto has really enjoyed being a part of the community here in Oakland and at Bridges.  He looks forward to another great school year at the Building Bridges After-School Program.

Laura Salazar has been working with youth in the Bay Area for seven years.  When she is not teaching the Mural class, she enjoys drumming, painting, and being proactive in her community of Oakland.  Laura is currently working towards her goal of being a certified teacher and freelance artist.  Culture, Language, Music and the Arts are her favorite things.  Laura is very happy to be working with the Bridges After School Program, and she looks ahead to enjoying a strong year together.

Yesenia Sanchez
is from Los Angeles CA.  This is her first year working at Bridges but her second year working through AmeriCorps.  She works with 1st and 2nd graders, leading art, team building and storytelling.  In her free time, Yesenia enjoys reading a good book, writing and listening to music, as well as hanging out with friends.  In two years she hopes to teach grade school, possibly 4th and 5th grade.