Zakiya is a lover of words—and creatively uses them by entertaining and compelling her friends and family or even strangers. Like a salmon swimming upstream, Zakiya recently returned home to Washington D.C where she works in education advocacy and community development. Zakiya places high value on faith, racial justice, love, Anthony Hamilton and laughter. Fancy, woke and southern, she’s generally passionate about being alive. She prefers singing in the keys of E or D or whatever second sopranos sing. Message tees & Bryan Stevenson are everything.
N. Young is currently living in New Orleans, where she works in education. When she’s not working, she can be found cooking, laughing, rooting for the Gamecocks, reading, eating red gummi bears, or jamming out to Tank and the Bangas and/or Stevie Wonder (in no particular order).
Kyle Southern is a doctoral student in higher education policy at the University of Michigan. His research focuses on access and equity issues in higher education.
Enchanta (En-Chon-ta) Jackson is a twerker for justice by day and a graduate student by night. She finds liberation through community engagement, laughing, dancing, traveling and writing on topics that impact women and people of color.
Shantae J. better known as “The Passion Pusher” was born in Chicago, spent her 20s in DC and now resides in Brooklyn. She is in love with sneakers and dope eyewear. When she’s not pushing people to own their truth she is hitting the books and writing papers as a MBA candidate. Shantae J’s purpose in life is to save humanity one story at a time through empowerment, storytelling and high fives! Shantae J. is a firm believer that #youmatter and so does your story!
Kushaan is an IBM Consultant and Social Entrepreneur based out of Washington D.C, curious about how humans interact, how systemic change works, how technology empowers the human spirit, and genuinely weird career enhancement insights. He has contributed to the Huffington Post, IBM’s Social Business Insights, and blogs from various non-profits including LIFT, ByteBack, and Street Sense. A Massachusetts native, Kushaan loves rooting for his hometown sports teams, passing time with Netflix sitcoms and dreaming about Taco Bell’s Dollar Cravings Menu.
Cameron Williams is a Washington, D.C. native who has spent a significant amount of time in Maryland. Cameron is an attorney that works on health policy. While law is his first love, Cameron is also passionate about topics involving faith, leadership development, service, and living with the end in mind. He express his love for these topics and shares tips on how to live an intentional life on his blog theprincipledlife.com.
Born in New Jersey, raised in Georgia, and grad schooled in California, Nikita currently lives in our nation’s capital, where she works for a nonprofit fighting for environmental justice, one research paper at a time. In her free time, she like to read, do yoga, visit art museums, and contemplate life’s mysteries. One of her goals for 2016 onward includes being more brave – by sharing her writing, traveling solo, and living an honest life.
J. Carroll, Collected Young Mind
Brandelyn N. Castine, Writer, Poet, Educator
Ashley Funderburk, Collected Young Mind
Michelle Janaye, Co-Founder and Assistant Director, The H.O.P.E. Scholarship Initiative
Reggie Legend, Writer, Steel Waters Poetry
Javier Martinez, Connector, Thinker, Doer
Marcus Simmons, Writing & Diversity Educator, Chicago
Christina Sturdivant, D.R.E.A.M. Life
Kezia Williams, Young Philanthropist
Eliot Williamson, President, The Market Rep, Inc.
Amonne, high school student