Executive Director / Co-founder
Bill has a total of 31 years of community organizing experience. In addition to being the Founder and Director of the Harriet Tubman Center, he is currently the Director of Community Partnerships at Southwest Solutions, a 340-staff agency that provides mental health services and community development in Southwest Detroit. Bill's work in Southwest Detroit was featured in an LA Times article. Click here to read the article.
Prior to founding the Harriet Tubman Center, Bill was the Mid-East Regional Director for the Gamaliel Foundation from 2003-2008, working with 17 community organizing projects in Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and New York. In 1993 he founded the Jeremiah Project in Southwest Detroit and Downriver and in 1996 he created the MOSES organization, a large 3 county urban/suburban faith based community organization in Metro Detroit, which he directed until 2004. He has conducted many leadership trainings and workshops for community organizers, students and community leaders at the local, state, national and international levels.
Bill speaks Spanish fluently and has traveled extensively in Central America, India and Romania. His education includes a BA from Univ. Detroit, an MA from Boston College and a Masters of Divinity from Loyola Chicago.
Lead Community Organizer - Civil Society in Detroit / Manager of Leadership & Training Programs
Dione Novais Rocha is an Organizer for Rebuilding Civil Society in Detroit and manages Training and Leadership Development for the Harriet Tubman Center for Organizing. Dione has over 6 years experience in labor organizing. She has worked on campaigns from Alaska to Florida and a large number of states in between, coordinating the planning and implementation of campaign strategies and tactics with staff and labor leaders to win fairness in the workplace. Dione is a native of Brazil, where her passion for social movements originated. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Communication Studies, with an emphasis in radio and TV production. Dione enjoys swimming, riding her bike at the park, listening to music, dancing, traveling, meeting diverse people and learning about them.
Lead Community Organizer - Metro Coalition of Congregations
Luke Allen grew up in the small town of Bear Lake, in rural northwest Michigan. He attended Lake Superior State University in Sault Ste Marie Michigan where he ran Track and Field and studied Political Science and Evolutionary Psychology.
Graduating in 2009, he comes to the Tubman Center after a year of service with City Year Detroit, where he led a team of 8 young adults who tutored and mentored students full time in a middle school on the east side of Detroit. In his spare time, he enjoys running, watching and participating in sports, reading, and jumping off of things into water.
Lead Community Organizer - YOUTH VOICE
Kayla Mason was born in Los Angeles, CA and began community organizing in high school. She was a youth peer organizer at the Los Angeles Community Coalition and in 2005 helped pass a resolution that brought college opportunities to thousands of South LA students. Kayla received her Bachelors in Sociology at California State University-Dominguez Hills and worked as a student organizer for the California Faculty Association advocating to stop fee increases at CSU campuses. In 2010, Kayla was a fellow for AmeriCorps Public Allies of Los Angeles and served at Community Development Technologies where she facilitated youth leadership trainings and co-created the youth group Speak Up.
In December 2011 Kayla received her Master of Social Work degree from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor as a Community-Based Initiative scholar. She completed her field placement at the Harriet Tubman Center working with YOUTH VOICE and was promoted to the lead organizer for YOUTH VOICE.
Community Organizer - Our Kids Come First / YOUTH VOICE
Kari N. Foote-Johnson has a long standing history working with youth and parents throughout communities in Detroit and its surroundings cities. Kari’s experience in child welfare practices and youth development initiatives has led to her desire to participate in grassroots actions affecting the community.
Kari’s passion to community organizing stems from the principle behind Harriet Tubman’s vision that “every great dream begins with a dreamer.” The sense of accomplishment that comes with seeing a dream come into fruition speaks volumes to the capacities of individuals and communities as a whole.
Kari received her bachelor of science in Psychology from Michigan State University as well as her Master of Social Work degree from Wayne State University, specializing in community practice and social action. Kari currently works full-time at Tubman as an organizer with Our Kids Come First and YOUTH VOICE chapters.
Community Organizer - YOUTH VOICE
Raymon Winans, being born and raised in the city of Detroit, has transformed pain from personal tragedy into motivation and determination to reduce youth violence and increase education through love and experience. He is an activist, community organizer and mentor who uses his passion, energy and love of youth to empower, mentor and educate Detroit’s young people. Raymon, as known as Ray, is currently pursuing his degree in Mental Health. He is also a full-time organizer working with communities to address the school to prison pipeline, youth violence and literacy issues.
Coordinator of Civic Engagement - Michigan Organizing Collaborative
Michael Edwin has five years of experience working for state and local elected officials. He has conducted numerous trainings for grassroots community leaders on civic participation and policy issues. He is a graduate of Western Michigan University where he received his Bachelor degree in Communication.
Outside of his organizing work, Mike enjoys spending time with his friends and family. He also enjoys writing music.
Temporary Office Manager
Though she was born in Oregon and has family ties to Virginia, Maureen has spent the majority of her life in Redford Township, on the western border of Detroit. Her passion is her family, she is married to her best friend and, without a doubt, knows that being a mom has been the greatest gift she has ever been given, and now she is a Grammie. Since the minute her children started pre-school, she has been involved with public school and has volunteered countless hours from pre-school through high school. She has been very active with the school board, parent organizations and fundraising for the school district. She has worked with her daughters closely at Redford Interfaith Relief to help feed and clothe the community. They are part of a new Church Plant in Dearborn Heights, Redeemer Community Church, which they are hoping to launch in September 2013. Maureen is excited to be part of The Harriet Tubman Center. She brings many years of experience in office management and human resources, and looks forward to being an asset to the growth of the center and helping all the organizers she works with.
David P. Anderson is an ex-journalist living and working in Detroit. He studied English at Penn State. After getting laid off from the newspaper industry in 2009, he switched to non-profit work and is not looking back.
David is the Communications Coordinator at the Harriet Tubman Center. He tells the stories of the many Tubman affiliates and the leaders they empower. As a foreseen but unintended consequence of this, he writes press releases, newsletters and takes pictures.
He makes long-format lo-fi documentary music about mountains. He bikes to work.
Organizing Fellow - YOUTH VOICE
Janet "Sala" Ivey has a long standing history in the community with youth and youth development. Youth empowerment is her passion. The conditions of youth today, knowing the strength and sheer knowledge of the power that the youth possess, is the drive that keeps Sala going. Sala’s ultimate desire is to assist youth in being the catalyst to the change they need to see.
Sala started a thriving youth ministry called EPIC Youth Outreach Ministry, Extremely Powerful in Christ. Where the objective is to direct, guide and equip young people to grow spiritually, socially, mentally, emotionally, physically and morally. They have come together to help young people discover their gifts for the perfecting and building of one another by working hand in hand with the church and our community. EPIC is growing tremendously and is an environment that creates awesome youth leadership.
Currently Sala is working with YOUTH VOICE's EPIC Chapter working on faith based youth organizing. She is dedicated to build a bridge between youth organizing and youth ministries, providing a platform for youth to make changes in their community and opening their eyes to the power that they possess to make these changes.
Organizing Fellow - Civil Society in Detroit
Omari Hall is a young, passionate organizer brought on by The Harriet Tubman Center to be the lead organizer for The Michigan Election Coalition's Election Protection Campaign. As a lifelong Detroiter, Omari attend Detroit Public Schools, until high school when he went on to Cranbrook Kingswood Upper School. From there he attended Oberlin College, where he received degrees in History, specializing in African-American Studies, and Music Technology.
Since his work with the Election Protection Campaign, Omari has joined the Civil Society Detroit team, dedicated to building a team of institutional leaders, united to work for a better Detroit.
Outside of his organizing work, Omari is passionate musician specializing in Electronic and Hip-hop production. He also has a profound interested in exploring the progressive potential for Hip-hop as a tool for teaching in both urban and suburban communities.
Organizing Fellow - Metro Coalition of Congregations
Shauna has spent the her first 10 years of her career working with churches leading service and justice initiatives in partnership with local non-profits and community leaders. Starting to work in community organizing with the Metro Coalition of Congregations has been a natural transition and fit because of her experience and passion for community service, development and equality.
Shauna and her family moved from Colorado to Detroit in the summer of 2012 and enjoy frequenting Eastern Market, getting to know their neighbors and spending time outdoors as much as possible.
Program Assisstant - YOUTH VOICE
Amy grew up in Livonia, about twenty minutes outside of the city. She attends the University of Michigan-Dearborn and is working to obtain her bachelors degree in Urban and Regional Studies. There she is also a member of Delta Phi Epsilon Sorority. She has volunteered with many different organizations within Detroit such as Greening of Detroit, Gleaners, and United Way.
Amy has always known that she has wanted to work with the youth. After taking classes in community organizing she realized that she wanted to make a difference by empowering the youth to become leaders in their community. In her spare time she likes to watch movies, listen to music, practice piano, and travel.
Left to right: Turaí Finley, Quentin McKinnon, Rasul Zakie, Trevon Stapleton, Michael Reynolds, Cheyenne Walker.