Great Grinds Drink Alike: Arnold Perkins - Red Bay Coffee

Great Grinds Drink Alike: Arnold Perkins

Red Bay Coffee is inspired by the many talented people we are surrounded by in Oakland. Our Great Grinds Campaign proudly features people we admire for their commitment and grind to their craft.

Arnold Perkins is an agent for social change locally, statewide, nationally and internationally. His work has impacted philanthropy, public health, criminal justice, government, and violence prevention. He has a special interest in working with young people who are experiencing life challenges in the criminal justice system.

People know Arnold as “Baba Perkins” because he is a trusted messenger. He takes this role seriously and is a fixture at the Alameda County Juvenile Justice Center where you can see him mentoring young men.  He is also an advisor to the Warden at San Quentin State Prison.

His background includes such varied positions as Alameda County Director of Public Health; high school teacher and principal; non-profit executive director; family counselor and advocate; foundation program officer and Trustee; college teacher and administrator; and restaurant owner. He is an experienced speaker and facilitator in the areas of organizational change, conflict resolution, team building, creative leadership, community development, and group dynamics. He currently consults with various organizations in these areas and is known for creating good trouble. An example of his “good trouble” is being a founder of the Brotherhood of Elders Network.

Arnold has received many awards and recognitions for his commitment to social change from organizations, including the Centers for Disease Control, the United Way of the Bay Area, The Center for Independent Living, and The San Francisco Foundation. In 2014 the California Endowment awarded Arnold Perkins with the Arnold X. Perkins Health Equity Founders Award “for a lifetime of inspired vision, passion, and commitment to social justice and health equity in California”. In 2016 he was named a Salzburg Global Fellow for his work in building communities.

At any given moment, Arnold can be found with his camera in hand, caring for his orchids, or on a river fly fishing.