Melissa (she/her) is an herbalist, writer, facilitator, and birthworker based in Ohlone Territory/Oakland, CA. Melissa’s family has roots in Puerto Rico and Poland and she has spent over 18 years working in a variety of social justice, learning, and healing spaces. In 2015, after teaching elementary school for eight years, Melissa published I am Sausal Creek/Soy el Arroyo Sausal, a bilingual English and Spanish picture book about the history of Oakland told through the voice of a local waterway. A graduate of the 3-year Cecemmana herbal medicine program and a practitioner of curanderismo, she currently helps teach the Curanderx Toolkit class at Ancestral Apothecary, School of Herbal, Folk, and Indigenous Medicine. Her journey of reclamation also includes playing and teaching bomba, traditional Afro- Puerto Rican music and dance!