I want to take the opportunity to uplift the inspiring and strong black women in our community who dedicate their lives every day to fight and educate for social justice and reform. I am not an activist but I will always use my platform and voice because I believe that is the true purpose in wearing the title of "Influencer". These incredible women inspire me to be and do better. I encourage and challenge you to follow their lead and this is why...
Layla F. Saad (@laylafsaad): She is a New York Times and Sunday Times bestselling author of Me and White Supremacy, anti-racism educator, international speaker, and host of Good Ancestor Podcast which delves into topics of race, identity, leadership, personal transformation, and social change.
Rachel Elizabeth Cargle (@rachel.cargle): She is a public academic, writer, and lecturer. Check out her link tree on social media which provides numerous tools and resources that encourages critical thinking, and conversation that explores race and womanhood.
Adwoa Aboah (@adwoaaboah): She is an activist, model, and founder of GURLS TALK. Gurls Talk is an online community for young women to discuss issues such as education, mental health, depression, sexuality, self-care, and relationships problems.
Brittany Packnett Cunningham (@mspackyetti): She is an activist, educator, and writer. She is the co-founder of Campaign Zero and a co-host of the political podcast Pod Save the People. Campaign Zero is a police reform campaign and a comprehensive platform of research-based policy solutions to end police brutality in America. Her podcast, Pod Save the People explores news, culture, social justice, and politics with a special focus on overlooked stories and topics that often impact people of color.
Tamika Mallory (@tamikadmallory): She is a social justice leader, political activist, advocate for human rights, equal rights for women, health care, gun restrictions, and ethical police conduct. She co-founded Until Freedom which is an intersectional social justice organization rooted in the leadership of diverse people of color to address systemic and racial injustice.
Ava DuVernay (@ava): She is a writer, producer, director, and distributor of independent films. She just started an initiative to spotlight police brutality called the Law Enforcement of Accountability Project (LEAP) which will fund 25 projects ranging from film, theater, photography, poetry, and music to sculpture and dance. She is the founder of Array Alliance that believes in demonstrating rich cultures, diverse viewpoints and unique perspectives of the communities in which we live are fully represented through film, positively impacting racial and social injustice around the globe. You should also check out her movies/documentaries: Selma, 13th, and When They See Us.
Austin Channing Brown (@austinchanning): She is a writer, speaker, producer, and New York Times best selling author of I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness. She focuses on faith, racial justice, and black womanhood. She has a video web series called The Next Question on racial justice.
Cleo Wade (@cleowade): She is an artist, poet, activist, and author of Heart Talk: Poetic Wisdom for a Better Life and Where to Begin: A Small Book Your Power to Create Big Change. Cleo sits on the board of The Lower East Side Girls Club which connects girls and young women to healthy and successful futures, the National Black Theatre in Harlem and the Women’s Prison Association. Her website cleowade.com provides a number of resources to educate yourself on antiracism.
Ijeoma Oluo (@ijeomaoluo): She is a writer, speaker, and self-proclaimed Internet Yeller. She’s the author of the New York Times Best-Seller So You Want to Talk About Race. She focuses primarily on issues of race and identity, feminism, social and mental health, social justice, the arts, and personal essays. Follow her linktree on Instagram for all her latest articles and work.
Monique Melton (@moemotivate): She is an anti-racism educator, podcast hope, author, and speaker. She provides an online group learning experience to explore the work of anti-racism through self-paced workbooks, classes, and online/in-person experiences. Her podcast, Shine Brighter Together, focuses on sharing the challenges, complexities and sheer joy of building healthy relationships and doing the heart work for true diverse unity.
Tarana Burke (@taranajaneen): She is an activist and founder of the Me Too Movement. Burke is currently Senior Director at Girls for Gender Equity. She organizes workshops to help improve policies at schools, workplaces, and places of worship, and focuses on helping victims not blame themselves for sexual violence. On her platform she provides action and resources for solidarity to bring awareness for black trans women.
Janet Mock (@janetmock): She is a writer, director, and activist. She is a New York Times best seller for her book Redefining Realness and podcast host of, Introducing Never Before with Janet Mock. She is an activist for transgender rights and for an intersectional and inclusive movement that includes all women: trans women, undocumented people, sex workers, and disabled folk.
I truly hope this list motivates you and provides the necessary knowledge, resources, and tools as you continue to educate yourself on racism, anti-racism, police reform, and social justice.