Kristina is Co-Executive Director of the Participatory Budgeting Project (PBP) based in New York City. She was born and raised in Virginia in a multicultural home (southern US and Ethiopian). In her role at PBP, she directs a small but mighty team of 2 (herself included) in the organizational, operational, financial, and people systems and structures, working to ensure that internal systems mirror the participatory democracy practices that we advocate for and implement. Participatory democracy is a tool for systems change – investing in the long-term capacity of community members so that people are able to shape public policy and spending decisions. PBP focus is on collaborative advocacy, implementation support, research, and the creation of tools and resources to expand equity and accessibility within practices such as participatory budgeting (PB). Their work seeks to build on people’s lived experiences and create a container for communities to shape solutions that directly impact their health, safety, and opportunities. Their approach includes an unwavering commitment to community ownership that centers community-led decision making as a vehicle for systemic transformation. They seek to collaborate to create tangible avenues for real political power of public funds, policies, and structures for Black and other communities of color.