GROWING UP: I was raised in the San Francisco Bay Area by way of Nairobi, Kenya. I have a Bachelors Degree from University of California Santa Barbara and a Masters Degree from NYU.
CURRENT GIG: I am fortunate enough to be currently working in the profession I am most passionate about – the Entertainment Industry. I am passionately involved in raising awareness to causes that affect us all. I am also the co-founder of this campaign as one of the causes that is important to me.
EXPERIENCES WITH RACE: When I was about 12 years old or so, I was riding my bicycle with some friends in my home town of Albany, California (one of the more progressive and diverse towns a person of color can grow up in) when I heard a man screaming. At first, I didn’t think he was yelling at us until I realized we were the only ones around and that I was the only black kid in my group. The man was screaming “Get out of the street, Nigger!” I remember my blood turning cold in my body. I had heard that word before and knew it was used throughout African American history in this country but it was the first time I had heard it directed at me – and with so much vitriol. It froze me. And I wanted to die. I am not sure my friends heard it or understood it but it left me feeling so alone and unwanted – it changed me in one simple second. I remember not even talking to my family about it – it had filled me with so much shame. That was the FIRST time I was called that.
FINAL THOUGHTS: I am a pisces, very sensitive and very artistic. I was scared of dogs having been bitten by one when I was younger but have since fallen in love with a few. I love cake. I used to hate my feet now I’m neutral towards them and I just let the pedicurist deal with them. I want to learn how to speed read. I am creative. a lover, a pacifist, curious, a good friend and a puppeteer. I love to DANCE though i’m only medium at it. I love to LAUGH and I am a professional at it. I sing and do improvised monologues in the shower and it never gets old. In fact, it makes me feel young, vibrant and creative.
Photograph by Spencer Susser