ROOTers at ROOTS Week 2019. Photo: Melisa Cardona


Introducing! Alternate ROOTS Membership Team


For the past few years at Alternate ROOTS, we have been growing and refining our team structure, asking ourselves: what is the best container to hold the work of this organization, at this pivotal time? Through the course of many conversations among staff, ExComm, and members, it became apparent that ROOTS needs a membership team. The work of supporting our members was happening everywhere and nowhere – all existing teams had a hand in it, but no one was expressly tasked with intentionally guiding this vital work.

Of this new team, ROOTS Executive Director, Michelle Ramos says: “As a membership led, member run organization, ROOTS has always modeled for the field what the power of the collective has the potential to create. At this unprecedented time in our growth, it only makes sense that we establish the first-ever Membership Department in the organization’s history. From our 2020-24 Strategic Plan to the culmination of our Ford Foundation BUILD planning process, it was clear that a staffed department solely dedicated to serving and supporting the needs of our members was the next step in our organizational journey.”

With that being said: we are thrilled to introduce ROOTS’ Membership Department. The Membership Team exists to support members and their membership, connect them regionally and interregionally, and highlight their work. The Membership Team will reinforce and solidify the core values of ROOTS as a member-based organization.

In the first year of its existence the Membership Team plans to: 

  • Embark on the ROOTS Rhizome Tour
  • Develop a membership orientation process and curriculum
  • Ideate and reactivate ROOTS Rhizomes
  • Clean and organize our membership database
  • Supervise the Member Emergency Relief program

Introducing! Alternate ROOTS Membership Director, Aimee McCoy

As excited as we are to announce this new team, we are equally excited to announce who will be leading it: Aimee McCoy. Aimee joined ROOTS as a member in 2014, came on board as a Arts Management fellow in 2017, and officially joined the staff in 2019, most recently serving as  the Oracle of Synthesis [Operations Manager].

“Aimee McCoy has grown to be a cherished and valued leader who is loved by our community and is absolutely the best person to lead this new work,” Michelle says of the decision to offer Aimee this new position. “Aimee will now be in shared space with the membership across our region listening, learning, and supporting.”

“In my new role, I have an opportunity to give back in a way I never dreamed of,” Aimee wrote in a letter to the membership, “The gravity of this position and its responsibilities hit home, especially in these uncertain times… The need for Alternate ROOTS as an organization with a membership base that is activated and leading the charge is beyond apparent.” (Read Aimee’s full letter HERE).

We are excited about this next stage for our beloved ROOTS community, and thrilled to have Aimee and her team leading this work, beginning with listening to our members, through the ROOTS Rhizome Tour.



Alternate ROOTS supports the creation and presentation of original art that is rooted in communities of place, tradition or spirit. We are a group of artists and cultural organizers based in the South creating a better world together. As Alternate ROOTS, we call for social and economic justice and are working to dismantle all forms of oppression—everywhere.