Meet the Staff at Metro Justice!

Colin O'Malley


Organizing Director
(716) 400-6287

Colin has been senior staff at Metro Justice since late 2010 and has helped to guide the organization's growth through the Occupy Movement, the foreclosure crisis, Fight for $15, and our recent long-term strategic planning process. He began organizing for social and economic justice at 17 as part of the Buffalo Activist Network, which organized against corporate globalization.  Since then he has organized for workers rights with Buffalo Jobs with Justice organizing high school students, as a regional organizer for United Students Against Sweatshops, a Justice for Janitors campaign at the University at Buffalo, and organized public housing tenants into Buffalo Tenants United.  He spent 2007 in Argentina learning from the Recuperated Factories Movement, and brings much of his inspiration from the movements of Argentina to his work in Rochester with Metro Justice.

Mohini Sharma


Restaurant Worker Organizer
(585) 623-9633

Mohini joined Metro Justice as staff in March 2017 after engaging in the Fight for $15 and a Union as a volunteer. She is a native of Rochester and graduated from SUNY Binghamton with a degree in Human Development and Sociology, with a minor in dance. Her experiences bartending and serving tables, as well as struggling with poverty while being a full time student, drive her dedication to build worker movements. Thus, she is excited to be organizing full service restaurant workers with Metro Justice as a part of the Fight for $15 and a Union!


Ashley Gantt


Lead Fight for 15 Organizer


For the last 5 years Ashley has worked in the heart of the social justice movement first  as an organizer with B.L.A.C.K. Currently she serves as chair of the Advisory Board for the YWCA of Rochester where she works with families directly affected by homelessness, addiction, and domestic abuse. Most recently, Ashley became Co-leader and Diversity Chair for Action Together Rochester where she fights for progressive causes through collaboration, education, equity and advocacy in our community. She strives everyday to love mercy pursue justice and walk humbly before her God.

Mercedes Phelan


Lead Education Organizer

Mercedes is a native of Rochester, NY. She studied Education at Keuka College and proceeded to work with children in the Rochester area. In 2016 she became the Community Outreach Chair for the Rochester Chapter of NOW (National Organization for Woman). Through encouragement of friends and family she is excited to be the new Community Organizer for Metro Justice/AQE. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her daughter Allison and our dog (Percy P Jones). I also enjoy Football (go Steelers!), Camping and reading. I look forward to getting to know everyone and becoming a part of the family. 

Andrew Thomas


Fundraising and Membership Director

Andrew is a former middle and high school social studies teacher and adjunct professor who changed careers to practice the kind of civic engagement that he has been preaching to students for years.  Andrew was a volunteer on the Metro Justice Education Campaign, along with other non-profit organizations, prior to coming to work for Metro Justice.

Jay Rowe

Office Manager

Jay first became a Metro Justice member back in 2006, mostly out of a burgeoning curiosity about local progressive movements.  Within a couple of years he was becoming heavily involved with local environmental and community development causes.  In early 2015 he was hired as the part-time Metro Justice bookkeeper, and two years later moved up to the position of full-time office manager.  When he’s not working he’s most likely hanging out with his 3 amazing kids.  

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  • commented 2016-04-06 13:52:44 -0400
    Team highly qualified to face any kind of situation. Very cool! Fernanda Haten do Trader Esportivo
  • commented 2016-02-29 22:05:55 -0500
    Hi, I was at the Rally last week at the school board and wanted to touch base with the two girls that were volunteering there that live in Gates, NY.

    If someone can please have them reach out to me that would be awesome.
    MY name is Michelle Metallo and they can email me at