Vision, Mission and Values

To create a society where every child of African descent is valued and thrives.

Values

Vision

To create a society where every child of African descent is valued and thrives.

Mission

Ifetayo Cultural Arts Academy empowers youth and families of African descent to achieve high levels of educational, professional and artistic excellence. As a leading Brooklyn-based institution, we inspire future generations to develop a strong African-centered cultural identity and realize their power to transform social inequity.

Team Ifetayo

Our faculty consists of highly skilled professional artists, scholars and experienced teachers, and includes published poets, former directors of music schools, artists who have exhibited at such venues as the Brooklyn Museum, and performers from such companies as Dance Theater of Harlem, Alvin Ailey, Jubilation Dance Company, and Miami City Ballet.

Founder

Kwayera Archer-Cunningham

acting executive director

Naima Oyo

Director Of Programs

Sabine Blaizin

executive artistic director

Dr. Angela Fatou Gittens

director of finance

Gary Louis

Arts Education Program Manager

Nacala Jendayi

Community Engagement Liaison

Marilyn Worrell

Finance Associate

Jerry Hadley

IYE Program Coordinator

Danielle Criss

Program Associate

Charlyn Jordon

Rites Boys and Young Men's Program Coordinator

Dr. Kafui Kouakou

Rites Girls & Young Women's Program Coordinator

Janeen Ettienne

Board Of Directors

Chair

Naima Oyo

Vice President Community Development Outreach
BankUnited

Vice Chair

Lesley D. Nurse, CFA

Managing Director North America Institutional Client Business
Neuberger Berman

TREASURER

Baruti Bediako, CPA

Principal
BNBCPA

 

secretary

Tarek Simon

Senior Associate
Loring Consulting Engineers

Assistant Treasurer

Tanya Taylor, CPA

Senior Associate
Federal Reserve Bank of New York

Member

Kathleen Ettiene

CEO
Blacklines of Design

Member

Ron Innocent

Director of Project Management
Denham Wolf Real Estate

Member

Kawana T. King Esq.

Corporate Counsel
Google, Inc.

Member

Hazel Beckles Young Lao

Retired
Community Service Society (CSS)

Member

Tricia L. Roberts

Vice President Finance
New York City Housing Authority

 

Member

Richard Asala

Vice President Finance
Investment Banking Associate – New York City Morgan Stanley

Member

Dr. Benjamin Talton

Professor African History & Director of Undergraduate Studies
Temple University

Iwa

To ensure that Ifetayo’s founding values are a living energy throughout the organization.

MEMBERS:
Ayoka Wiles-Abel
Kwayera Archer
Byron Barton
Dexter Braithwaite
Rajonna Lewis
Omiyinka Ojoe-Barton
Solwazi Olusola
Marilyn Worrell

Council of Elders

The Ifetayo Council of Elders are the "Nzonzi" (wise individuals/specialists) of the Ifetayo "Kanda" (community).

CURRENT:
Mama Safiya Bandele
Mestre Joao Grande
Baba Leroy Henderson
Baba Bernard Marsh
Mama Ella Moore
Obara Wali Rahman-Ndiye
Iya Omoshelewa Olantji
Mama Mattie Pusey
Myrtle Primus-King (Andara Rahman)
Chief Baba Neil Clarke

ANCESTORS:
Nana Okomfo-Panyin Amma Ansaa Atei
Mama Violet Archer & Baba Lawrence Archer
Mama Elinor Bowles
Baba Chuck Davis
Mama Omolouwa Diop
Mam Katherine Dunham
Mama Selma Edwards
Mother Myrtle Glover
Baba Dr. K. Kia Bunseki Lumanisa Fu-Kiau
Baba Montego Joe
Mama Faybiene Miranda-Pusey
Baba Carlos Russell
Mama Mary Umolu
Baba Jitu Weusi

©2019 Ifetayo Cultural Arts Academy

Kiujumla

(Holistic)
We believe communities are strengthened through approaches that are comprehensive and holistic. We are therefore committed to the development of the whole person; mind, body, and spirit.

Ubuntu

(Connectedness)
We believe in a universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity. Ubuntu is a Nguni Bantu term that roughly translates as human kindness. “I am because we are.”

Ifetayo

(Love)
We believe that love is the center of the work that we do. Ifetayo, Yoruba word from Nigeria, West Africa which means love is enough for joy. Restoring love and joy in our community through programming that reflects the richness of African culture.

Mbongi

(Collective Decision-Making)
We are committed to collective decision making in developing and delivering excellent programs. Mbongi (Kikongo) which means “Place of Learning” and is essentially a system of governance that brings people together to resolve community challenges.

Sankofa

(Critical Reflection)
We believe that learning from the past is critical to building for the future. Sankofa is a word in the Akan language from Ghana that translates as “reach back and get it” (san-to return; ko-to go; fa-to fetch, to seek and take).

Our Values

Kiumjala

(Holistic)
We believe communities are strengthened through approaches that are comprehensive and holistic. We are therefore committed to the development of the whole person; mind, body, and spirit.

Ifetayo

(Love)
We believe that love is the center of the work that we do. Ifetayo, Yoruba word from Nigeria, West Africa which means love is enough for joy. Restoring love and joy in our community through programming that reflects the richness of African culture.

Mbongi

(Collective Decision-Making)
We are committed to collective decision making in developing and delivering excellent programs. Mbongi (Kikongo) which means “Place of Learning” and is essentially a system of governance that brings people together to resolve community challenges.

Sankofa

(Critical Reflection)
We believe that learning from the past is critical to building for the future. Sankofa is a word in the Akan language from Ghana that translates as “reach back and get it” (san-to return; ko-to go; fa-to fetch, to seek and take).

Ubuntu

(Connectedness)
We believe in a universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity. Ubuntu is a Nguni Bantu term that roughly translates as human kindness. “I am because we are.”