Denise Escobar

Denise Escobar

Denise was first introduced to Planting Justice in 2010 when her teenage brother came home one day, raving about this incredible non-profit organization that was going to support him and his school in establishing a raised vegetable garden at Fremont High School in Oakland. One day after school, her brother made kale smoothies from ingredients that were uncommon in their household but hyped up the smoothies he had just learned how to make with Planting Justice’s educational team.

Back in 2010, Denise wasn’t aware of the benefits of consuming fruits and vegetables or even growing her own food. Denise and her family lived in a state of food insecurity and lacked access to affordable and nutritious food. Denise didn’t know it then, but her brother and Planting Justice were going to introduce her to many new things in her life to come.

As the years passed, the positive influence of Planting Justice reached Denise’s children. Their indirect association through her brother pulled her and her kids in, making them interested in and involved with small things they learned throughout the years. These experiences supported Denise and her family in developing a deeper connection with their food and a better understanding of where it comes from.

Denise officially joined Planting Justice in 2024 as the Lead Tree Planter / Tree Canvasser. She spends her days planting and educating the residents of Deep East Oakland about the benefits of having fruit trees planted on their properties. Denise has also been working on advancing her education with a focus on law. She aims to someday use the education she has acquired to aid the community with family law and juvenile reentry matters.

Working for Planting Justice is important to Denise because it allows her to reconnect with her community on a personal level by going door to door, offering the opportunity to beautify the community by bringing fruit trees to their homes, helping them access sustainable, healthy foods. In her off time, Denise enjoys muscle car meets and considers herself a muscle car enthusiast.

Job Title
Lead Tree Canvasser & Tree Planter
Planting Justice Since
    • I have seen myself in the best, best headspace in my life. I’m not drinking no more. I’m eating healthier. It took me to come here, to be here, to really learn to love myself again.

      1. Otis Spikes, Nursery Manager
        Planting Justice since 2016