Who We Are

WHO

The First Sins ~ The First Suffragists

Unerased was spurred by the 100th Anniversary  of women’s voting rights in 2020. That tumultuous year of unprecedented strife and challenges demonstrated  Black women’s continuous demands for our voice and our vote extend far beyond a 100-year observance.  Rewind four centuries when the first stolen Africans arrived on these shores, resisting the original cardinal sin of the nation we would inherit. Throughout history, Black women fought for power in governing our bodies, our voices and our choices. Unerased| Black Women Speak  is a tribute and celebration to the first warriors on whose path we follow.

Yesterday they carried the torch for all people stripped of the most fundamental forms of liberty. Today we pick up the baton, pledging to tell ourstory as it unfolds today. Through our lens of herstory, this space honors the sacrifices and triumphs of descendants of warriors, daughters of the enslaved and the future caretakers of our legacy.

Founding Sisters

Steering Committee

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DENISE ROLARK-BARNES

Denise Rolark-Barnes, Washington Informer publisher, is past chairperson of the National Newspaper Publisher Association, which unites some 200 Black newspapers across the country. Rolark-Barnes enjoys high civic standing in Washington, D.C. and among respected national service organizations.

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PATRICIA FORD

Patricia Ford is former executive vice-president of Service Employees International Union and a longtime labor and racial justice advocate. Her recent strides include support of the Bay Area Black Workers Center and she is a longtime board member of the Congressional Black Caucus Institute.

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JOVIDA HILL

Jovida Hill, executive director of the Philadelphia Commission for Women and advisor to the Mayor on issues of gender and inclusion, is a former journalist and filmmaker.She has piloted Suffrage. Race. Power — Shifting the Narrative initiative as part of Philadelphia’s citywide centennial observance.

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LLENDA JACKSON-LESLIE

Llenda Jackson-LeslieSRP Content Editor,  enjoys more than 20 years in non-profit communications, research and advocacy, specializing in public engagement and content management. A longtime senior associate of McKinney & Associates, she currently works with the National Partnership on Women and Families.

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MARIAH MCCLAIN

Mariah McClain, SRP Social Media Manager, cut her teeth on change and activism as a college student leader who currently commands a suite of skills in graphic design, research, integrated digital media and social media engagement.

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GWEN MCKINNEY

Gwen McKinney, founder of McKinney & Associates, birthed and sustained the first Black woman-owned communications firm in the nation’s capital dedicated to progressive public policy. She has represented and collaborated with prominent thought leaders and change agents advancing rights and equality. Since 1990, Gwen’s vision of racial and gender justice has been translated into a bold and tested suite of narrative and content creation using her skills as a journalist, advocate and communications strategist. Today that acumen is being honed into the unfolding of Unerased | Black Women Speak, a public engagement initiative that she created in 2020 dedicated to collaboration, advocacy and storytelling for, by and about Black women.

Rosemari Mealy

ROSEMARI MEALY

Rosemari Mealy, award-winning author, poet and international human rights activist, is an adjunct assistant professor at the City College of New York and splits her time between Brooklyn, New York and Coral Springs, Florida.

Project Team/Advisors

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CAROLYN MALACHI

Carolyn Malachi is a Grammy-nominated artist, an audio producer and engineer, and a professor in the Cathy Hughes School of Communications at Howard University. In addition to her award-winning creative work, Carolyn mixes records for independent artists and conducts research on the intersection of sound and blockchain technology.

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ALEX KAVOURAS

Alex Kavouras, Graphic Designer. When he is not designing he loves spending time with his family.

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LEVI PERRIN

Levi Perrin, SRP Webmaster and Content Coordinator, brings a passion for creative storytelling, progressive causes, grassroots change birthed from experience as a seventh generation South Carolinian. Levi comes to the initiative with experience in creative, digital media, and outreach and research.

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NICOLE HAYES

Nicole Hayes, Web Editor, is a published commentator on society and faith. She brings more than 14 years of public relations experience to her work in serving for-profit and nonprofit organizations.

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ALYSSA DAVIS

Alyssa Davis, Digital Media Coordinator, has a passion for creating meaningful content. She’s enthusiastic about volunteering and community outreach. She has a strong interest in addressing equality and equity related to systemic racism and how that looks in Black and Indigenous communities, especially in healthcare.

Stephanie Renée

Stephanie Renée

Stephanie Renée, Coordinating Producer, is a former on-air host and Program Director for WURD Radio in Philadelphia, as well as an accomplished recording artist and performer. She serves as the VibeMistress for her nonprofit arts education foundation Soul Sanctuary and is passionate about uplifting Black excellence through all forms of creative media.

McKinney & Associates, campaign and team director, is the first Black and woman-owned communications firm in the nation’s capital that expressly promotes racial justice public policy. For SRPUnerased, McKinney continues its decades of marrying advocacy, narrative creation into a suite of integrated strategies aimed at social change.  

The Washington Informer Charities (WIC) is our fiscal agent. Established in 1989, WIC is the nonprofit arm of the Washington Informer which continues the tradition of pioneering Black women journalists who waged gallant fights against slavery, lynching and discrimination, while advocating for women’s equality and universal suffrage.

SPONSORS

Initial funding for Suffrage. Race. Power was provided by the following organizations.

“Anonymous” Women Donors

Project Team/Advisors

SPONSORS

Initial funding for Suffrage. Race. Power. was provided by the following organizations.

“Anonymous” Women Donors

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