The Community Editorial Board is made up of seven members of the Long Beach community. Board members serve a one-year term, allowing for the opportunity for new and emerging voices to have a consistently refreshed seat at the table.
Board members are welcomed and encouraged to write opinion columns during the year on issues and subjects in which they have a personal interest, experience or expertise. Members serve as advisers for any editorials that we publish as the official position of the Long Beach Post, with the expectation that members will bring forward a diversity of opinions, viewpoints and dissenting positions for our consideration. Dissenting opinions will also be published. The board is not expected to be unanimous in consideration of each position and we want to provide the community an opportunity to hear informed rebuttals and counter arguments to those of the majority of the board.
The group will operate wholly separate from the newsroom, as is the case with traditional, internal editorial boards. Reporters, editors and others on the editorial team will not be privy to the group’s deliberations, and the group will not have any direct influence in news decisions.
Members are drawn from different life journeys, different parts of the city, different socioeconomic experiences. A stipend is offered to board members to compensate for their time and labor in this advisory role.
If you are interested in joining the editorial board, applications will be accepted on a rolling basis and can be sent to [email protected]. Editorial Board terms are from September to August.
The Community Editorial Board can be reached at [email protected].
Members for the inaugural 2020-2021 board
Amber Hopper has been a teacher, educational director and community volunteer for over 20 years in Long Beach and Los Angeles. Students and colleagues voted her “Teacher of the Year” in 2008. Her love of teaching has brought her to classrooms across the globe and currently through the screen in Damascus, Syria. She has an English degree from UC Berkeley and a teaching credential from CSULB. Amber was drawn to join the Community Editorial Board because there are many stories of joy, hardship and commitment left to tell in Long Beach. Amber is married with two children.
Ebony A. Utley
Ebony A. Utley, Ph.D. is a professorpreneur. As a professor of communication studies at California State University Long Beach she researches, publishes, and teaches interpersonal communication. As an entrepreneur, she curates experiences and develops technology products for social impact. Her contributions include, but are not limited to, raising awareness about the dark side of technology, improving romantic relationship communication, supporting women recovering from infidelity, preventing domestic violence through entrepreneurship, and healing via Ebony Yoga. Her two worlds collide as the associate director for the Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at California State University Long Beach.
Jeffrey L. Rabin
retired Los Angeles Times reporter
Jeffrey L. Rabin is a retired Los Angeles Times reporter and long-time Long Beach resident. He is now an urban planning and environmental consultant. Rabin is concerned about racial, economic, and environmental injustice. He is troubled by the huge disparities in income, life expectancy, employment, education, and quality of life between low-income communities of color in north, west, and central Long Beach and the affluent east side. As a volunteer for Meals on Wheels of Long Beach, he has seen first-hand what food insecurity means for our senior citizens. Rabin has a master’s degree in urban planning from UCLA and a bachelor’s degree in history from UC Berkeley. After his career in journalism, he worked for the California Coastal Commission. He is the lead author of a major report published by UCLA’s Luskin Center for Innovation about California’s investments in pioneering programs to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. He wrote a major article about the impact of climate change on Long Beach published last fall in UCLA’s Blueprint magazine.
Criminal justice reform consultant
Jose Osuna wears many hats in the community. He is a formerly incarcerated Latino living in North Long Beach with a consulting business that centers around assisting organizations that serve individuals that have been impacted by the justice system, especially the gang-impacted community in Long Beach. Jose spent almost a decade working at Homeboy Industries, in Los Angeles—the world’s largest re-entry and gang rehabilitation facility—under the leadership of the Rev. Gregory Boyle, where he discovered his passion for working with gang members and the formerly incarcerated. Jose is also co-founder of a small organization, Restore I.N.K., whose mission centers around serving the gang-impacted community in Long Beach. He is father to four children and lost his oldest son, Moises, to gun violence in 2008. This tragic incident is the driving motivation in Jose’s work with the community.
Mariela Salgado, MBA is a local small business co-owner, Long Beach Parks, Recreation and Marine commissioner, education advocate and most importantly, mother of two Scouts. Her business has been recognized for its service and commitment to Long Beach and awards include Best of Long Beach, Best Small Business 2018 and most recently Community Impact Award 2020. She strongly believes in being of service and can often find her and family working on a community improvement project or event. Her personal experiences as a first-generation college student fuels her desire to serve and champion policies and programs to provide recreational and educational opportunities for all children and abilities. Today, she joins the community editorial board to share the importance of education and service.
Computer systems engineer
Murriel McCabe and her husband, both native Angelenos, landed in the Wrigley neighborhood of Long Beach four years ago and quickly fell in love with the local community. She has been working in technology for over a decade and is currently focused on cloud computing technologies as a customer engineer at Google. She is deeply interested in exploring ways that technology can be used for social good and community empowerment. A longtime volunteer, Murriel has served on non-profit boards focused on technology, mentorship, and education; and is passionate about diversity, equity and inclusion. She has previously developed mentorship programs, launched a local youth literacy initiative, and coordinated hackathons and STEM/STEAM education events. She strongly believes in the value of independent media, that the voices of the community at the ground level are meaningful, and that transformational change and lasting impact will come with continued accountability and awareness. Despite the current state of the world, at heart, she is still an idealist and optimist.
Employment specialist for people with special needs
Shilita Montez is a longtime Long Beach resident, student, parent, educator, and community agent. She has served in various administrative offices in LBUSD schools, as a dance and theater coach at Long Beach Renaissance High School for the Arts, and as a community college and learning community English instructor at Long Beach City College. Shilita currently serves as an opportunity specialist, a community agent and advocate for special populations such as people with special needs and people experiencing homelessness. In addition, Shilita works with community and faith organizations where she applies doctoral research in intercultural studies.
People Post was a space for opinion pieces and guest submissions from members of the Long Beach community and did not necessarily reflect the views of the Long Beach Post. They have been discontinued and replaced with the Community Editorial Board.