Why did you agree to be co-chair of An Evening of Joy and Liberation?
This is my third year attending An Evening of Joy and Liberation. The first time, I came as a guest and fell in love with the great work that Sadie Nash is doing to help young women of color find and use their voices. The mission resonates with me deeply, and you can immediately see the manifestation of the organization's work whenever you interact with the Nashers. Last year, I had the great fortune of being honored at the event. I was thrilled but honestly nervous about being interviewed by two Nashers live on stage because I know how smart, confident and tough they are!
What should guests coming to An Evening of Joy and Liberation be looking forward to?
They should look forward to an inspiring evening that leaves you feeling like you're ready to take on the world! They should also look forward to leaving with the feeling of assurance that the world is in good hands with this next generation of young women who are equipped and empowered to make a difference.
How did you discover Sadie Nash?
I was invited to attend the 2017 "Garden Party" on a rooftop (that was not a garden! :-) by board member Meera Marti. I love Meera, so I didn't really ask many questions. I just wanted to support her and trusted that she wouldn't lead me astray. But what a wonderful discovery it was. Once I saw the Nashers in action, I was hooked! I knew this organization would become a part of my life because the work they do aligns so closely with my personal values and vision for a life well lived.
Why do you think it is important to invest in the leadership of young women of color?
Studies show that young women of color are the most undervalued people in society. They bear the burden of sexism, racism, classism and many other -isms that if allowed to fester and take root in their psyche could prevent them from reaching their full potential. But they are also some of the most brilliant and resilient people you will ever meet. And when that brilliance is nurtured -- confidence, self awareness and self love are powerful enough to overcome any obstacles they may face.
What are the causes that you are currently most excited about?
I am always most excited about advocating for the advancement and enrichment of young people. As the founder of Moms of Black Boys United, an organization that works to change the policies and perceptions that impact how Black boys and men are treated and perceived by law enforcement and in society, I am dedicated to doing my part to try to create a more fair and just world for future generations. Girls and gender non-conforming youth also need and deserve advocacy around issues that impact them most, and they need to be trained on how to advocate for themselves. That's why I'm proud to support Sadie Nash!