I had no idea I was Black until I was twenty-one on safari in Kenya. My father abandoned me when I was five and my extended family lives in the Virgin Islands and Jamaica so I had to create my own understanding of self.
When my mother gave me away at eleven I went to a boarding school for financially needy and orphaned children and was raised by several sets of White houseparents and a set of Black houseparents. There were few outside forces limiting my interests. As a result, I was the young Black girl who hiked, fished, played basketball, acted in plays, analyzed literature, threw discus, and played the french horn; I defied stereotypes. Most of my interests led my peers and some members of the Black community to refer to me as a “sell-out.”
I went on to college and pursued an unconventional course of study, theatre. I never wanted to pursue acting professionally, but assumed that theatre was my only passion and I needed to spend the rest of my life onstage. I have since realized that my love wasn’t solely for theatre. The dramatic arts are a facet of my true passion; experiential education.
My current interests are race, power, privilege, gender, and class in Outdoor, Environmental, Arts, and Adventure education. I do theatre for social justice youth work, and hold workshop for adults as well. I want to continue my work on adolescent racialized identity development and academic achievement, theatre for healing and reflection, and the intersection of experiential adventure education and theatre arts curriculum. I also blog about my life, my passions, and my work