Dara Illowsky

Occupation: Legal Assistant at the Sierra Club

University: Brown University ’14

Organizations: Jewish Voice for Peace (Denver-Boulder Chapter), IfNotNow (Colorado Chapter), Sierra Club, National Lawyers Guild

Dara is a Jewish-American activist who envisions, and actively works toward, a world of equity, justice, and dignity for all peoples. She grew up in New York and graduated from Brown University with a Bachelor’s of Science in Environmental Science in 2014. She now lives in Colorado and works as a legal assistant for the Sierra Club’s Environmental Law Program. She aspires to one day be a full blown lawyer working to protect our planet and its people.

A relative new-comer to the world of Palestine solidarity work, Dara was inspired by abolitionist and anti-racist activists she worked with in New York to take a closer look at her complicity in the oppression of the Palestinian people. In late 2016 and early 2017 joined Jewish Voice for Peace and IfNotNow and never looked back. She believes that American Jews are in a unique position to lift up the voices of Palestinians and combat the idea that anti-Occupation rhetoric is anti-Semitic; in fact, it is our moral duty to do so. Her work with JVP and INN has included organizing street theater outside an AIPAC bruncheon, a “Walk for Gaza” at a “Walk for Israel” event, speaking at her Congressman’s town hall, and more. She is grateful for the friends and family who have helped her along this journey and continue to support her pursuit of a better world. She is especially grateful to the progressive Jewish community in Denver and Boulder for welcoming her back into Judaism after several years astray, wondering if her Jewish identity can exist alongside her identity as an anti-racist, anti-imperialist activist. It can, it does, and it will.

In her spare time Dara also enjoys volunteering at a local church serving as a Sanctuary for immigrants facing deportation, hiking and playing outside, dancing with Mokomba, a West African drumming and dance ensemble, petting dogs, and attempting to coax her small garden through multiple Colorado hail storms.

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/daraillowsky