Carin Hewitt, Executive Director
Carin brings 27 years of nonprofit management experience to VIDAS. She is recognized for her ability to assess situations from a systems perspective while still valuing the human factor. With a deep background serving people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, she is a passionate and skilled advocate for developing individuals to achieve their highest potential. Her effectiveness stems from an instinctive ability to assess individual and organizational strengths and then equip people - employees, managers and leaders - with tools and processes that help them reach their goals, both individually and as a team.
Richard L. Coshnear, Attorney and Removal Defense Legal Director
Office: B Street, Santa Rosa, CA and Petaluma, CA
After 12 years as a physician assistant in a farmworker clinic, Rick turned to law in response to the Proposition 187 attempt to criminalize immigrants and prohibit them from going to school or getting care at the clinic. He completed law school and opened an office in 2003, representing immigrants in removal proceedings, as well as with affirmative applications for residence, visas or citizenship for “low-bono” fees. During the campaigns to win a DREAM Act and a Comprehensive Immigration Reform in 2013, he and three immigrant women paralegals converted that law office into the non-profit agency, VIDAS, to offer lower-cost and pro bono services. He has been active in community organizing for greater immigrant rights with the Committee for Immigrant Rights, later known as Comite VIDA, helping to win new policies from the Sheriff and ICE regarding detention of immigrants.
Now, Rick is the Legal Director at VIDAS for the removal defense aspect of our work, supervising 3 attorneys and 4 paralegals. In the Secure Families Collaborative and with state grants, we provide pro bono representation to a caseload of about 40 Sonoma County Immigrants in removal proceedings, and a caseload of about 30 from other counties, and about 20 unaccompanied minors.
Chandler Jordana, Associate Director
A graduate of the University of Utah’s Master of Science in International Affairs and Global Enterprise Program, Chandler’s work mainly entails administrative tasks including writing grants, grant management, and reports.
Chandler has seven years of experience working in the non-profit sector, previously working in both administrative and client-facing roles. Chandler has previously worked as a Board Vice President, Board Treasurer, Executive Director, Development Director, Development Manager, Program Coordinator, Writing and Communications Coordinator, case manager and case management supervisor. As the son of a formerly undocumented immigrant, Chandler is passionate about immigrant rights and became acutely aware of migrant and asylee issues while living in Beirut, Lebanon at the height of the Syrian War.
Chandler speaks five languages and enjoys writing poetry and comedy in his spare time. He also enjoys learning about different languages and cultures.