Mayor’s “Juneteenth” Town Hall

I was at the meeting that was held on Juneteenth. I found it ironic that the staff of a Black history institution nor the elected Mayor acknowledged the significance to US and world history.

But on to the issues. I did not notice anyone at the meeting promoting anarchism  or “Black Bloc” as they’ve been called. There were a number people that were VERY vocal about issues related to police misconduct and accountability. There were also other issues raised.

The media, and Mayor’s office it appears, is not mentioning the biggest issue raised that led to the arrests were about corruption related to the ownership and occupancy of Colman school.

The meeting started with representatives of the African American Heritage Museum & Cultural Center asserting ownership and the founder presenting the Mayor with legal documents regarding ownership of the Colman school building and demanding an full scale investigation into corruption and fraud resulting in current occupancy by Urban League Village. They challenged the attempted corporate takeover involving prominent white Seattle power brokers including Bill Gates mother in law Mimi Gates. Barbara Thomas, the director of NAAM admitted that their organization did not own the building.

People also expressed:

-a need to stop the “plantation politics” and high level institutional racism and corruption that has effectively destabilized the African American community creating the conditions that foster the negative culture of crime and violence leaving everyone vulnerable as evidenced by tragic death of Tyrone Love and Justin Ferrari in the same block.

-Questioned the wasting of public resources such as the situation with Horace Mann being funded by the city yet kept empty.

– Reiterated ongoing need for a world class cultural center, an institution that effectively inspires and nurtures positive culture, pride and productivity. Too many African American youth who lack a positive cultural identity and framework adopt negative lifestyles trying to imitate European mafia gangster culture (i.e., Al Capone, John Gotti and Al Pacino Scarface). Colman school was fought for to be a center of cultural and economic revitalization for the community but was co-opted into a real estate development with a milquetoast museum-gallery that has not significantly impacted the issues of education/youth development, culture, economic development and public safety. The estimated 30 million dollars that has gone into this building could have made a serious difference if strategically invested.

-Raised questions about $200 million being spent on new juvenile jail development and ineffective incarceration model rather than invested in effective prevention and intervention.

-Raised questions about the administration’s commitment to diversity, equity and “shared prosperity” in light of people being pushed out of Seattle in general and the Central District and how the pending Yesler Terrace redevelopment in specific and mitigate or exacerbate the problem.

-Highlighted institutional inequity where white organizations use black faces on brochures to raise money in the name of “helping” the community but are really serving their own interests, perpetuating the status quo and keeping power among their own while problems in Black community have continued to get worse.

Personally, I would have preferred the meeting continued and feel that the Mayor got a pass to avoid dealing with hard issues and go beyond his talking points.

What I don’t understand is how everyone is going to live together in harmony if all lives and interests are not respected and valued. How can you expect peace without justice? There needs to be some honest dialogue if there is going to be any common ground or resolution. Other than that it will be business as usual, polarization will increase and tensions continue to rise.

Wyking is a third generation Central District community builder who has dedicated countless hours creating successful positive youth programs and community building activities including the Umoja Festival & Parade and the Umoja PEACE Center. He has coached baseball, basketball and football and mentored many youth in the Seattle area.



Contact: [email protected]



 Seattle, WA. (October 28, 2011) – The Young Voters League will be uniting Seattle’s general election candidates  for City Council and School Board in Seattle’s Central Area on Thursday, November 3rd, at the Monica’s Village Place Community Room from 6-9PM.  All candidates for Seattle City Council and Seattle School Board have been invited.

 The recent Occupy Wall Street and its affiliated movements have highlighted the dissatisfaction with the current state of electoral politics among young people and many others.  One major criticism of the movement is that there are no clear issues policy objectives.  Others add that if the movement wants to really have an impact that the energy must be translated in to votes.  This forum will allow young voters and those who identify with the growing We Are The 99% and Occupy movements to pose specific questions to candidates related to local issues.

 The Young Voters League exists to encourage political participation from younger voters, to facilitate dialogue between young voters and political candidates, and to assist young people in registering to vote and engage political process.

 The event is co-sponsored by UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center, United African Political Affairs Committee, Seattle Displacement Coalition, United 4 Youth Coalition, Mothers Outreach Movement, African American Heritage Museum & Cultural Center, Seattle Hip Hop Summit Action Network Youth Council, Brothers Building, Association for Africentric Development, Freedom Outreach Seattle, All City Chop, Black Women & Men United for Union Jobs, Bruce Lee Community Peace Garden Organizing Committee (UW), Kickit4aCause Entertainment & Promotions, Theroughbred Fitness & Boxing and in solidarity with local and international movements including Occupy Seattle, Occupy Wall Street, Occupy Together, Occupy The Hood and Hip-Hop Occupies.

Monica’s Village Place is located at 140 23rd Avenue S, Seattle, WA 98144. Enter on Main St.           

 WHAT:            We Are The 99% General Election Candidate Forum

WHEN:            Thursday, November 3, 2011, 6pm – 9pm

WHERE:          Monica’s Village Place Community Room

140 23rd Avenue S (Enter on Main St.)

Seattle, WA 98144



We understand  the desire to get behind Mayor McGinn’s bicycle initiative but whoever took the five childrens 10 speed bicycles from the UMOJAFEST PEACE CENTER GROUNDS  PLEASE THEY ARE THE CHILDREN’S BICYCLES, a 22 inch tire pink girls bicycle with high seat, a 22 inch tire silver girls bike with  front wheel knee action, a 24 inch tire girls bicycle pink lavender and silver stripes, 20 inch tire blue boys bike and a 24 inch tire blue boys bike with carrier (my son’s bike). All bikes were ten speeds. PLEASE KEEP YOUR EYES OPEN AND THANKS FOR THE TREMENDOUS TURN OUT FOR THE UMOJAFEST AND PARADE. 
FOR MORE INFORMATION call 206.941.2527 or email [email protected]

Umoja Fest weekend features 3 stages, Activities, Food, Family Fun & Community Building

For Immediate Release:

Umoja Fest African American Heritage Seafair Celebration 2011

“Building Family, Building Community”

The weekend of Umoja Fest African American Heritage Seafair Celebration will include attractions such as:

Friday Aug. 5th

  • Children’s Day & Activities, 10am Judkins Park
  • I Love My Life  Rally for P.E.A.C.E. , 5pm-8pm, Judkins Park
  • Kick off Party Sam Chambliss

Saturday, Aug. 6th

  • UNCF Walk for Education,7:30am –
  • Honoring the Legacy Parade Mural Dedication 11:30am, 23rd& Union
  • Umoja Fest African American Heritage Parade,1pm, 23rd & Union St.
  • UNCF Celebrity BBQ Cook-Off for Education 11am -6pm
  • Soul of The City Concert, Judkins Park
  • Afro Chic Fashion Show, Judkins Park
  • Heal The Hood Baketball Tournament, Shawn Kemp Court @ Judkins Park
  • Hip-Hop Stage, Judkins Park
  • Community Fitness Challenge, Judkins Park

Sunday, Aug. 7th

  • Poetry In The Park, Judkins Park
  • Soul of the City Concert, Judkins Park
  • Hip-Hop Family Day, Judkins Park
  • Heal The Hood Baketball Tournament

Other attractions: a variety of vendors including; food, arts & crafts, community resources.



Seattle,WA – Phoenix based soul artist Nik West will headline the Umoja Fest 2011 Soul of the City Stage. She will be joined by Seattle native RyanChristian.  The Soul of The City Stage features two days of live R&B, soul, jazz, blues, poetry and spoken word, fashion, dance and more.Live performances by UPC Hip-Hop Soul All Stars, Thomas Crown, Shyan Selah, Urban Seeds, The Descendants, As One, Shanise Rakel,  Long Overdue feat. Biggie Lewis (Wheedles Groove), Curry Temple Unified Praise, Marcia Blair , Sam Chambliss, Jerry Henderson and more. Saturday & Sunday 2pm – 9pm.



2:00    Open   
3:00-3:25    Shyan Selah    –
3:30-3:50    Urban Seed  –
4:00-4:20    The Descendants   
4:30- 4:55    RyanChristian feat. As One  –
5:00-5:10    Shanise Rakel  –
5:10-5:40    Fashion Show   
5:55-6:40     UPC All Stars feat Thomas Crown    www.ThomasCrown.US
6:50-7:20    Nik West    –
7:30 -7:50    Caffine Jazz   –


2:00    Drum Circle
3:00    MShenga African Drum
3:30    Zuumba in the Park
3:45    Eritrean Dance
4:00    Percussin 4 Kids w/AMD
5:00    Zambuko Marimba Ensemble
6:00    Long Overdue
7:00    Jerry Henderson


  • LOE Presents
  • The MOVE presents
  • A-Rawlo
  • Juga Hill
  • Clyde McNight
  • Aiyasia Lyrics
  • NFA presents
  • Shayla Pitre
  • MIH presents      



2:00-2:20    One Voice   
3:00-3:30    Caffine Jazz   
3:40-4:00    Children of God & Divine Deliverance   
4:10-4:30    Curry Temple Unified Praise  
4:40-5:10    Mission   
5:20-5:55    Sam Chambliss
6:15 -7:00    Nik West   –


2:00    Poetry In The Park hosted by KHMET & Trinide

  •  Mikeya aka Keyabee
  • Korvus Blackbird
  • Verbal Oasis
  • All Power To the Positive presents GCL1 The Minister of Information
  • More To Be Announced


  • Korvus
  • Delton Son
  • BeLoved
  • Nu Era (or Dyno Jamz)
  • Julie C w/ guests?
  • Ditta Mac
  • Liz Ali
  • Jah Jigga
  • Fooligan Crew
  • Lady Tasz
  • J. Infinite
  • Greg & Jerome
  • Token Folk
  • Jamil Suleman
  • Rahwa
  • Side Pony
  • KnowMads
  • LA
  • Chev
  • TAPE
  • Ethos
  • DeAle
  • GTI Presents
  • Silver Shadow D



About Nik West

Described asPrince meets Erykah Badu with a funky bassline and with credits that include work for Coca Cola, Apple, and MTV, the Phoenix,AZ based singer, bassist and songwriter Nik West is anything more than just another pretty face. Challenging and changing the industry around her day by day, West is a special musician with a deep love for music and the chops to back it up. Her debut album “Just In The Nik of Time” released in 2011, showcases Nik West as a vocalist and bassist who creatively delivers her soul and message with modern R&B, jazz overtones, and thought provoking lyrics all while handing you the funk!

About RyanChristian –

As a native o
f Seattle  Ryan, who grew up in a musical family and found his voice at an early age. During high school, his band As1 developed a strong following eventually landing them on the legendary stage at the Apollo Theatre. After a brief hiatus from the stage to graduate from the University of Nebraska and pursue his professional basketball career, RyanChristian has released his first solo album titled “Forever”. Smooth, soulful and refreshing, he describes it as ‘music with purpose’. Focusing on lyrical content, RyanChristian hopes to inspire listeners to embrace the true meaning of love, while also encouraging married couples in their walk together.

About Shyan Selah & The Republic of Sound

Building on his success as President/CEO of Brave New World (BNW), Shyan Selah has created a style of music that is both unique and commercial. The Republic of Sound provide a progressive fusion of Hip Hop, rock and soul music as a perfect backdrop to Shyan Selah’s hard hitting, gritty yet spiritual lyrics.  “We represent music in its most honest form of expression. Our style is adapting and accepting all musical genres and cultures. So the idea with our approach is to present to the people a collective sound that’s both moving and organic.” –


UmojaFest African American Heritage Festival & Parade

August 5-7, 2011

Judkins Park

2150 S. Norman St.

Seattle WA 98144


Friday Aug. 5th

  • Children’s Day & Activities, Judkins Park
  • I Love My Life  Rally for P.E.A.C.E. , 5pm-8pm, Judkins Park
  • Kick off Party Sam Chambliss

Saturday, Aug. 6th

  • UNCF Walk for Education, 7:30am –
  • Honoring the Legacy Parade Mural recognition 11:30am, 23rd& Union
  • Umoja Fest African American Day Parade,1pm, 23rd & Union St.
  • UNCF Celebrity BBQ Cook-Off for Education
  • Soul of The City Concert, Judkins Park
  • Afro Chic Fashion Show, Judkins Park
  • Heal The Hood Baketball Tournament
  • Hip-Hop Stage
  • Community Fitness Challenge, Judkins Park

Sunday, Aug. 7th

  • Poetry In The Park, Judkins Park
  • Soul of the City Concert, Judkins Park
  • Hip-Hop Family Day, Judkins Park
  • Heal The Hood Baketball Tournament

Other attractions: a variety of vendors including; food, arts & crafts, community resources.


Like Umoja Fest on Facebook

Follow Umoja Fest on








The Seattle 18th Annual UNCF Walk for Education, formally known as the UNCF “Walk-a-Mile to Save-a-Mind”, is back in its first year since 2000.

The walk begins at Judkins Park and will continue through the “African American Legacy Parks”, Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center, and back to Judkins Park.

Come and join us on Saturday, August 6, 2011 at Judkins Park as we walk to help students get to and through college. Corporate teams, fraternities, sororities, groups, churches, organizations and individuals who participate realize that “a mind is a terrible thing to waste”®. UNCF currently supports over 300 UNCF students and scholarship recipients from the Pacific Northwest and Alaska.

Prizes will be awarded to the participants and team captains that raise the most money through confirmed donations through August 31, 2011. Deadline for top team prizes is July 15. Registered walkers who raise $100 will receive an official UNCF Walk for Education t-shirt.

Click to Register for Walk



On Saturday, August 6th at Umoja Fest, amateur grill masters will compete in the UNCF BBQ Cook-off for Education to earn the title of “2011 UNCF Cook-off for Education Grill Master” and raise money for education. Up to 60 participants will compete in four BBQ cook off heats that will consist of preparing hamburgers. The top two winners from each heat will compete in one final round heat preparing a “mystery meat”. Each heat will have a panel of judges made up of local prominent community leaders, celebrity chefs, and celebrity athletes/coaches. The participant entry fee will be $50 and each participant will receive a culinary gift bag. All proceeds from this event will benefit the UNCF Pacific Northwest Scholarship Fund.

During the Cook-Off, UNCF will host a Kids Happy Hour, where free turkey dogs and sliders will be available for kids under 18 years of age. Kids will also have the opportunity to receive free backpacks filled with school supplies and information on local educational resources and healthy eating tips.

Click to Register for BBQ Cook Off

 Check out last year’s UNCF BBQ Cook-off for Education:

Join us on Facebook (I Support UNCF – Pacific NW)

Follow us on Twitter (UNCFPacificNW)


Volunteer Opportunities with Umoja Fest 2011 Seafair Celebration

For Immediate Release:

Umoja Fest invites members of the community to put the “U” in Umoja by joining Team Umoja as a volunteer to help .   Volunteers are needed to help with various aspects leading up to and at the festival including:

  • Marketing/public relations & outreach
  • Set-Up & Clean Up
  • Children’s Fun Village
  • Stage production assistants
  • Photography/videography
  • First Aid Booth
  • Information Booth
  • Other
We are asking for a minimum commitment of 2-4 hours. Community Service hours are available.

If you are able to volunteer please complete the attached Volunteer Form and email to Teroshua Thomas at [email protected] or call 206. 226.9895.

The weekend of Umoja Fest African American Seafair Celebration will also include attractions such as Umoja Fest African American Heritage Parade, Children’s Activities, Soul of The City Stage, Best of Both Worlds Fashion Show, Community Fitness Challenge, Heal The Hood Basketball Tournament, Car Show, Hip-Hop Stage, Vendors and more. For more info visit, email [email protected] or call 877.505.6306.

Like UmojaFest on Facebook

FollowUmojaFest on


UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center featured on KEXP Why Music Matters

Click to go to the full story:

Wyking Garrett teaches the Music Biz & Artist/Label Development class at the Hip-Hop Communiversity


Produced by Anna Boiko-Weyrauch, AIR’s Live Interactive Resident for Fall 2010. Editorial oversight by Kevin Cole. Engineering help by Matt Ogaz. Live Interactive is a collaboration of KEXP and AIR, the Association of Independents in Radio with financial support from AIR members worldwide,, and the National Endowment for the Arts which believe a great nation deserves great art.

Recyle your Christmas Tree at UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center

For Immediate Release:


Eddie Hill


 UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center invites you to recyle your holiday trees this year.  Please RSVP to [email protected]  if you will be bringing your tree.  You can drop trees between now and Sunday morning at:

 UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center

1107 24th Avenue (@ Spring St.)

Chipping will take place Sunday between 10am and 1pm. Volunteers are also welcome to come and help out or hang out on Sunday. 

 Trees Recycled are GOOD:

* Can be ground up and used as mulch in gardens, at farms, on trails, or in animal stalls.

* Can be used as sand and erosion barriers on the Puget Sound, streambeds, and lakes.

* Can be sunk into private lakes and ponds, where it provides refuge for fish.


* They are discarded with regular trash and end up landfilled or incinerated. Landfilling takes up space, and incineration pollutes the air.

* They are burned in your trash, causing air pollution and creosote buildup.

 This is the first in a series of actions, by UmojaFest Peace Center and GroundUP, Alley Cat Acres, HomeGrown Organics, and the Yesler Terrace Community Green Project.


 Dear friends and neighbors,

The UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center community invites you to join us in making a difference by supporting our 3rd Annual Holiday Trees forP.E.A.C.E. Fundraiser.

Since it’s inception in 2008, the UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center has become a positive force and a beacon of hope and light for many youth in our community.


The UmojaThe UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center is a community based, multi-faceted youth-centric cultural facility in the heart of Seattle’s historic Central District focused on replacing negative culture with positive culture.  The facility includes the audio recording and video production studios, library & reading room, fitness studio, Organic P.E.A.C.E. Garden.

If you or someone you know plans to purchase a live Christmas tree this year, you can make your purchase support the work of enterprising and hopeful young people? 



AFFORDABLE PRICES! Trees are priced to fit YOUR budget.

Place your order today! Better still, tell all your family, friends, church and other groups about this

opportunity to continue being part of the change and let us know HOW MANY TREES should be set aside.

Trees are available for pick up at the center daily from 9am-9pm starting Saturday, Nov. 27th. The UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center is located at 2314 E. Spring St. (24th & Spring St.) in central Seattle.  One block south of Union st behind the Post Office.

To place your order today, please call 206.329.1591 or 206.941.2527.  

If you do not want a tree but would like to support by making a contribution please do so at or mail your contribution to:

AAD-UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center
PO Box 22328 
Seattle, WA 98122

Please reference tax ID#14-1798232 for your tax deductible contribution.

Thank you for your consideration and we hope that you can help us make the promise of change a reality.  

Thank you.

UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center




The UmojaThe UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center is a community based, multi-faceted youth-centric cultural facility in the heart of Seattle’s historic Central District.

UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center engages and trains youth, young adults and community members to be advocates for themselves and community through outreach, training, meeting with elected officials and other stakeholders as well as attending and participating in public forums and hearings. 

Advocating for Positive Change


Members of Youth Stakeholders Team meeting with Seattle Mayor Michael McGinn


 Councilwoman Jean Godden visits UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center

Community Building Events

Since its inception, the UPC has held several events at the site and throughout the community bringing together thousands people from across the northwest and nation.  UPC events offer a unique mix of education, entertainment, cultural awareness and civic engagement from weekly dinners to rally’s to candidate forums.


2010 Event highlights include:
3rd Annual 206 LOVE for Haiti Benefit Concert

2nd Annual Seattle/NW Hip-HopLeadership Conference

Rap Sessions: Global Hip-Hop,  Youth & Economic Recovery

4th Annual Malcolm X Day Conference & Music Fest


Umoja Fest African American Seafair Celebration


1st Annual Seattle Hip-Hop Career & Business Expo




UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center Programs

Through partnerships to implement innovative program models in arts, technology and entrepreneurship the UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center seeks to provide educational programs that fosters positive, experiential learning alternatives for youth. 

Hip-Hop Communiversity

The Hip Hop Communiversity is a learning center started by a group of youth and supporters who felt like sitting around just talking about the school system wasn’t enough. So they started a school!

The goal of the project is to coordinate culturally enriching entrepreneurial based activities that address social and community development using technology as a bridge to future employment. The program is hosted at the UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center in central Seattle. The Hip-Hop Communiversity features reco
rding and video production studios and free classes in the Music Business, Debate, Politics &

Civics, Video Production,  Fashion Design & Merchandising, Science of Flow/Art of Emceeing, DJing 101, Event Planning & Promotions and more.


Sew Beautiful Fashion Program


Sew Beautiful is a youth empowerment program for young women of color, dedicated to the exploration of fashion and pop culture media careers.  The mission of Sew Beautiful is to promote the fashion arts and encourage entrepreneurship, education and mentorship. Our goal is to help raise awareness, and offer support through activities, mentorship and discussion. Sew Beautiful seeks to build self-esteem of young women, broaden their creative minds and help empower their true beauty within. Participants get an up-close view of the fashion industry with opportunities to meet and work with some of Seattle’s industry experts and get a glimpse of the fashion industry.


GAME RECOGNIZE GAME Urban Sports Marketing Academy

Founded in 2008, the GAME RECOGNIZE GAME Urban Sports Management Academy is an experiential learning project for at-risk youth. The project introduces youth to the many business and career opportunities surrounding professional sports. Participants gain valuable skills including decision making, strategic planning, marketing and resource management by planning the annual Heal The Hood Outdoor Youth Basketball Tournament at Umoja Fest community basketball tournament and related activities. The curriculum uses professional sports as a lens to examine the attitudes and behaviors necessary for success on the court or playing field and in life. Guest speakers include professional and college athletes, sports agents, entertainment lawyers, sports journalists and more.

For more info contact Earl Parker at 206.683.9164 or via email at [email protected]




African American Heritage Festival & Parade


The annual Umoja Fest African American Heritage Festival & Parade is the oldest and largest African American community festival in the northwest and a shining example of youth using their creative energy to build stronger and safer communities. All members of the community are invited to participate and help make this event an overwhelming success.



Programs in Development

Youth Chess Academy

The purpose of the UPC Chess Academy is to introduce youth to critical thinking and problem solving skills using the game of chess as a lens to examine the attitudes and behaviors necessary for success in life. The program is intergenerational and also helps youth develop positive relationships with adults.

Green Organizers Mixer & Spring Hip-Hop Fest Saturday, April 18th at the UmojaFest P.E.A.C

For Immediate Release:
Green Organizers Mixer & Spring Hip-Hop Fest Saturday, April 18th at the UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center
The Umojafest P.E.A.C.E Center’s Green Light Initiative and the Race, Justice and Sustainability Project of Sustainable Central District and Sustainable South Seattle invite you and your organization to:
Justice Brunch! Green Organizers Mixer & Spring Hip-Hop Fest Saturday April 18th at the UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center at 24th & Spring in Seattle.

The brunch will take place from 10am – Noon followed by a community celebration of Earth Week featuring live performances, speakers and community organization tables and vendors from Noon – 6PM.

Scheduled performers include Yirim Seck, KHMET, Razpy & The Vigilantes, Ayron Jones the Bluesman, Geneiva Arunga, Suntonio Bandanas, Korvus Blackbird, Jamil Suleman, M. Famous, Garlandn Green, and other guest performers with music provided by DJ Kuhnex and Zecheriah the Barber and hosted by Wyking & G. Prez.

In celebration of Earth Week, this event is a networking opportunity for groups involved in environmental, sustainability, and justice work to meet, build relationships, and thereby expand the reach of our projects. All brunch participants will be provided tables to stay and share information about their programs.

Confirmed participants include: Seattle Pea Patch, Got Green, Clean Greens Project, Pursuit Of A Green Planet, African American Longshoremans Coalition, Life Enrichment Group, Hip-Hop Congress, Mothers Outreach Movement, Block Teamsters Union, Presidential Media Group, Mint Factory Clothing, The Nia Center, United For Youth Coalition, Association for Africentric Development, Feed The Body Teach The Soul and more.

Saturday, April 18th
10AM – 6pm
Umojafest P.E.A.C.E Center
2314 E. Spring St. (24th Ave & Spring St.)
Seattle, WA 98122

Potluck BBQ (No pork or soda please!).

PLEASE RSVP if you are able to bring something, volunteer or just coming to [email protected]. The brunch has limited space. We look forward to seeing you!

The Green Light Initiative at the Umojafest PEACE Center focuses on the sustainability concerns that offer opportunities for our community to thrive. The group strives to make the resources of the green movement accessible and applicable while reclaiming our historical legacy of healthy and environmentally conscious living. Chair: Amber Croyle, [email protected].

The Race, Justice and Sustainability Project is an effort by Sustainable Central District and Sustainable South Seattle to build an action agenda at the intersection of justice and sustainability. Please click this link to fill out our brief questionnaire to share your experience and knowledge. Sustainable South Seattle and Sustainable Central District are volunteer-run community groups working to promote sustainability in our neighborhoods through project-based community engagement. For more information contact: Deric Gruen, [email protected].

Youth & Community Forums to address violence

You are invited to “Change the Game: Overcoming Obstacles, Achieving Success”
A Community Dinner with Keynote by Dr. Sujan “Supreme Understanding” Dass, Community Speakers, Performances & Youth Resources.

Friday, January 9, 2009, 6:00-9:00pm, Garfield Teen Life Center
Saturday, January 10, 2009, 6:00-9:00pm, Van Asselt Community Center

PLEASE RSVP to Maria Kang [email protected] or call/text 206.817.2522 with the size of your group if you plan to attend.


For Immediate Release:



“Change the Game: Overcoming Obstacles, Achieving Success”
A Community Dinner with Keynote by Dr. Sujan “Supreme Understanding” Dass, Community Speakers, Performances & Youth Resources

Friday, January 9, 2009, 6:00-9:00pm, Garfield Teen Life Center
Saturday, January 10, 2009, 6:00-9:00pm, Van Asselt Community Center


SEATTLE, WASHINGTON- January 5, 2009

The United For Youth Coalition, UmojaFest P.E.A.C.E. Center and Seattle Hip-Hop Youth Council welcome author Dr. Sujan “Supreme Understanding” Dass to Seattle for two events in the Hip-Hop Thinks Lecture Series. “Change The Game: Overcoming Obstacles, Achieving Success,” will be held at the Garfield Teen Life Center on Friday, January 9th and at Van Asselt Community Center on Saturday, January 10th, 6:00pm to 9:00pm both nights.

Both events are free to the public and will include a keynote presentation from Dr. Dass, community speakers, performances, youth resources and dinner.

About Dr. Sujan “Supreme Understanding” Dass
From juvenile delinquent to Phd at age 26, Supreme Understanding is a community activist and expert on the struggles faced by many urban youth. He has traveled to hundreds of cities in the U.S. and internationally, organizing, researching and conducting workshops, lectures and motivational speeches. His knowledge of America’s ghettoes has made him a staunch critic of the many failed measures to reach our urban youth. In How To Hustle & Win: A Survival Guide for the Ghetto, the author infuses lessons into commentaries and tales that appeal to the urban mind, laying out effective strategies for intervention and prevention, guidelines anyone can use to survive and thrive in an environment that normally rewards no one.

About the Hip-Hop Thinks Interactive Lecture Series
This series uses hip-hop as a platform for youth to address the critical issues they face today while exposing them to positive career opportunities in media, entertainment, communication and business. The series features authors, filmmakers and entrepreneurs as guest presenters, performances by local artists, tables sharing resources for youth, and community dinners.

About United For Youth Coalition & UmojaFest Peace Center
The coalition is a growing network of community-based organizations, businesses and individuals committed to creating safer communities by recognizing and engaging youth as assets rather than liabilities. Currently the coalition members are focused on developing the UmojaFest PEACE Center ( at 24th & E. Spring in Central Seattle. The center will feature audio recording and video production studios, a Youth Violence Memorial & Organic Garden, office space for community organizations and an outdoor stage.

The January 9-10 events are presented in cooperation with the Seattle Public Schools African American Action Team and the Seattle Parks Department, with support from the Mothers Outreach Movement, Multi-Media Center, Coalition of Youth & Family Advocates (Tacoma), the Association of Africentric Development, Remix Marketing & Communication, Seaspot Media Group,, Third Level Events, NIA Center, Way of Life Entertainment, Vibrant Entertainment, Penny Pinching Records, Braidz 4 Dayz, Seattle Young Peoples Project, Block Teamsters Union, Black Urban Professionals, Prodigal Suns & Daughters of America,, Block Teamsters Union, Braidz 4 Dayz and Mint Factory Clothing.

Friday, January 9, 2009, 6:00-9:00pm
Garfield Teen Life Center
428 23rd Ave, 98144
(206) 684-4550

Saturday, January 10, 2009, 6:00-9:00pm
Van Asselt Community Center
2820 S Myrtle St., 98108
(206) 386-1921

For more information concerning this event, please contact Sara-Anne Gates (206.303.0377) or email [email protected].