Our Team

Pennie Opal Plant


Pennie Opal Plant is and Indigenous grandmother of Yaqui, Mexican, European and undocumented Choctaw and Cherokee descent. Born in the shadow of the Chevron Refinery in Richmond, CA she has been a leader in her community fighting for justice following the explosion of that facility in 2012. She is co-founder, along with Shannon Biggs, of Movement Rights. She has been an activist for over 35 years on anti-nuclear, environmental and indigenous rights. Her current work includes assisting communities and tribal nations in aligning human laws with the natural laws of Mother Earth in order to confront corporate power that is harming life. She is a founding member of Idle No More SF Bay, and a signatory on the Indigenous Women of the Americas Defending Mother Earth Treaty. Pennie also is a founding member of the Bay Area Rights of Nature Alliance and has been deeply involved in promoting the Declaration on the Rights of Mother Earth. She lives near the Richmond Chevron refinery, is the wife of actor and artist Michael Horse, and happily lives with her husband, daughter, grandson, two cats and four chickens.

Shannon Biggs


Co-founder and Director of Movement Rights, which was born in 2015 out of her 12 years of work at Global Exchange, where she was Director of Development until 2005, before beginning the Community and Nature’s Rights Program, focused on assisting communities confronted by corporate harms to enact binding laws that place the rights of communities and nature above the claimed legal “rights” of corporations. Over 160 communities have passed these new laws across the US, and have used this new understanding to stop working defensively against corporations and take courageous action to assert their rights to make governing decisions where they live. She is the co-author of two books, Building the Green Economy: Success Stories from the Grass Roots and The Rights of Nature. She is also a leading international speaker, author and activist on the growing movement for Rights of Nature. Shannon is a lecturer of weekend “Democracy Schools” that explore the rights-based framework for change, and leads rights of nature trainings around the country. Prior to coming to Global Exchange she was a senior staffer at International Forum on Globalization (IFG), where she organized large international teach-ins and wrote and edited for IFG publications. She also was a Lecturer in International Relations at San Francisco State University. Shannon holds a Masters in Economics/Politics of Empire the London School of Economics (LSE), and has a BS in International Relations from San Francisco State University (SFSU).