Leadership Board

The Leadership Board of the Street Vendor Project is composed of deeply invested organizational members who work closely with staff and the general membership to plan and direct the organization’s priorities and actions. Each year, members campaign for a seat on the board, and are elected through a democratic process by the general membership. The 2019-2020 board has 15 members who reflect the demographics of our membership.

Leadership Board 2019-2020 (elected May 2019)

Adelaida Simon, originally from Mexico, has been a member of SVP for 5 years. She is a single mother to three young children, and sells tamales and flautas in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. Adelaida is a founder of the Women’s Committee, a working group composed of female vendors, staff, and advisory board members.

Heleodora Vivar Flores has served on the leadership board of SVP for over a decade. During her time, she has developed strategic organizational alliances with nonprofits serving similar populations, including Laundry Workers Center and Make the Road New York. She sells general merchandise in Washington Heights. She migrated to the USA from Mexico.

Maria Marin, originally from Mexico, is a mother, has been on the Leadership Board of SVP for one year. She was inspired to join the board to advocate for safer working conditions for female vendors. She sells tamales throughout the week in Downtown Brooklyn.  

Policarpo Cortez is a former vendor from Mexico who has been with SVP for over a decade. He has been integral in developing the organization’s police accountability policy, which involves mobilizing vendors to accompany one another to NYPD precincts to fight unjust tickets. 

Juan Salas is a former vendor who sold tamales from 2009 to 2012, and who is seeking to return to vending. He was forced to quit vending because he received such a large quantity of tickets for vending without a permit. Juan is also disabled, which makes vending hard for him. He continues to work with the SVP because the community is important to him and he hopes to be selling again. He is originally from Mexico.

Hui Jin Wang joined SVP in 2017, and was elected to the Leadership Board in 2019. Originally from China, Huijin sells general merchandise in Chinatown, Manhattan and lives in Flushing, Queens. She is the owner and manager of Taste of Northern China, a much loved restaurant located in Chinatown, Manhattan.

Fallou Seye has been selling ladies handbags and t-shirts in East Harlem since 1993, after moving to New York from Kenya. He joined SVP because a staff organizer helped him obtain his license, and he now feels so he now feels he should help others obtain theirs. 

Kabir Ahmed is a former food vendor from India who has served for 7 years on SVP’s leadership board. In 2019 he had to quit vending because renting a permit got too expensive. He is dedicated to fighting to lift the cap on permits to create opportunities for fellow immigrants. 

Mounir Bouabane is a food vendor from Tunisia who has been working in downtown Manhattan for more than 15 years selling coffee, breakfast and Halal foods. He joined SVP in 2010, and has has been active since 2018. He was elected to join the leadership board in May 2019. 

Guadalupe Galicia, originally from Mexico, has been a member of SVP for over 7 years, and has been on the leadership board for the majority of that time, except for when she took time off to raise her children. She sells tamales in the mornings in Bushwick, Brooklyn after dropping off her children at school, and finishes her workday in time to pick them up. 

Hulya Svendik is a longtime fruit and vegetable vendor, originally from Turkey, who works and lives on 14th Street in Manhattan. She and her husband own a fruit and vegetable cart. She joined SVP in 2014 and was elected to the leadership board in October of the same year. She has been involved with SVP in reaching out to vendors all across the city and planning for strategies to push our Lift The Cap campaign forward. 

Sonia Perez joined SVP in 2015, and was elected to the Leadership Board in 2016. She is a single mother of three daughters, originally from Mexico, who sells tamales in Bushwick, Brooklyn on the weekends. Sonia has been leading training for members on waste reduction and how to procure recyclable food containers. 

Juana Sosa joined SVP in 2018, and is currently serving her first year on the Leadership Board. She is originally from Mexico, and sells tamales in Corona, Queens. She is a lead member of the Women’s Committee. 

Eliana Jaramillo has over a decade in leadership with the organization. She has been selling food on the streets of Midtown Manhattan since the 1980s. She was one of the first female Latinx street vendors to serve food in Midtown. Eliana is an integral part of SVP’s mobilization efforts, and prioritizes attending meetings with elected officials to push them to pass the bill to lift the caps. 

Sophia Laskaris migrated to the US as a child from Greece. Upon her family’s arrival in NYC in the 1950s, her parents began working as street vendors. She took up the trade herself as an adult. She has over a decade with SVP, and has been an integral force in conducting outreach to bring new members into the organization.