Luci Murphy is a native of D.C. where she is a vocalist who often leads group singing, and has worked as a medical interpreter of Spanish and English. She facilitates a music therapy workshop with D.C. parolees. She has a long history of community activism, especially working with children at risk. She has visited Lebanon to observe Palestinian Refugee Camps, China just before the normalization of relations with the U.S., Brazil for a grass-roots organizing conference, and Cuba to oppose U.S. travel restrictions. A past president of the D.C. League of Women Voters, she has also served on the Steering Committees of the People’s Music Network, "Health Care Now!," and Washington Inner-city Self Help. She has also been the convener of the Gray Panthers of Metro D.C., an associate producer of Sophie’s Parlor Women’s Radio Collective at WPFW 89.3 FM, the Pacifica Station in D.C. and member the D.C. Afro Latino Caucus. To facilitate greater understanding between African Americans and Latinos, she tutors anti-racist activists in Spanish. Currently she sings with the SGI New Century Chorus and the D.C. Labor Chorus. In 2007, she received the Paul Robeson Award for Peace and Justice from the Friends of the People's Weekly World. In 2012 the Emergence Community Arts Collective gave her its IN HER HONOR Award. In 2016 she received the JOE HILL AWARD from the Labor Heritage Foundation. Luci has been performing since her childhood in the 1950s. To reach the members of our diverse human family, she sings in ten languages: English, Spanish, French, Creole, Portuguese, Zulu, Arabic, Hebrew, Cherokee, and ki-Swahili. She draws on the folkloric traditions and musical idioms of all these cultures, as well as her own roots in Spirituals, Blues and Jazz.
Dwayne B! aka the “Crochet Kingpin” is a homegrown DC native poet, activist, break-dancer, and fashion designer. He is one of the hosts of DC’s longest running open mic series, Spit Dat, as well as a member of the Busboys and Poets hosting team for the 5th & K location. In addition to featured readings at every Busboys and Poets location, SAGAfest Iceland 2015, Spirits and Lyrics NYC and Manassas, Woolly Mammoth Theater, and the C2EA “We Can End AIDS” march, Dwayne’s short form poetry prowess led him to win the Best Haiku Award at the 2011 National Underground Spoken-Word Poetry Awards (NUSPA). His work to increase HIV awareness through spoken-word garnered recognition from the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, BBCAmerica, the Discovery Channel, and The Washington Post. Ultimately, his goal is to force his audience to feel. He tends to meet goals. When not documenting his life through poetic meter, he can be found on the metro making scarves and hats, or singing karaoke.
Rose Jaffe is a visual artist, with mediums spanning mural painting to book illustration. Born, raised and in love with Washington, D.C, she earned her BFA at the School of Art and Design at the University of Michigan. Since graduation she has taught art in high school and after school programs in the city before pursuing an art career full time. The content of her work is most often based upon the human form - exploring themes of political activism, female empowerment, natural healing and spiritual grounding. She strives to use her art as a tool to create beauty, find connection, and promote social change. She is dedicated to the District!
Manissa M. Maharawal, PhD.
Manissa M. Maharawal is Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology at American University in Washington DC. Her scholar-activist research focuses on social movements and urban space. She is the co-founder of the Narratives of Displacement and Oral History project with the Anti-Eviction Mapping Project and an oral historian and poet.
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