T. Ayoka Turner

Movement Partnerships Practitioner
Person wearing a bright orange hat, black-framed glasses, and a black top, posing for a photo against a white background.

T. Ayoka Turner

Movement Partnerships Practitioner

T. Ayoka Turner is a trainer, operations nerd, lay minister and lifelong learner. She is also a lover of nature documentaries, watching sports, and solo international travel. She has over 30 years of experience partnering with communities and leaders of organizations to fight for social and community change, including: Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice, the Movement Strategy Center, Black Organizing Project, Black Lives Matter, Center for Third World Organizing/CTWO and the Design Studio for Social Intervention. She engages in a daily practice of finding joy and humor, and has made a pledge to live her bucket list rather than just writing it down.

Ayoka was proudly born and raised in Bed Stuy Brooklyn and on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, and spent 20 years living in the Bay Area. She has spent her life fighting to improve the conditions for poor and working class communities of color like the ones she was raised in. Ayoka currently lives in Southwest Philadelphia with her teenaged son Khalil.

 

What Liberation Means to Ayoka

Tell us why you do what you do.

I want a world where all the children can be free. I'd love for all of us in philanthropy and the broader social justice movement to be so succesful at what we do that we're no longer needed for this work.

What’s most important to you about being part of Solidaire?

I believe in people more than organizations. Solidaire brings together a wide spectrum of creative, talented, and dedicated folks who are working for justice in really interesting ways. I’m thrilled to join the team and to bring my skills, networks and dreams of freedom to this work.

What does liberation mean to you?

Liberation is about getting free of oppression of any kind. It's about laughter and joy and love and human connection being universal truths for all people, not just the privileged. As a working class Black, queer, butch woman who has been working for justice and equity for my entire career, I am about doing the work to fight racial capitalism and all of its effects.