Alicia Garza and Patrisse Cullors


Memorial Fieldhouse

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Alicia Garza
Alicia Garza is an internationally recognized organizer, writer, and public speaker. In 2018, she founded the Black Futures Lab, which invites Black people to experiment with new ways to build independent, progressive Black political power. Garza dreams of a future where all Black communities have what they need to live well.

As the strategy and partnerships director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance, Garza works to build a movement at the intersections of race, gender, and economic justice. With Opal Tometi and Patrisse Cullors, Garza created #BlackLivesMatter and the Black Lives Matter Global Network, a global organizing project to end state violence and oppression against Black people. The Black Lives Matter Global Network now has 40 chapters in four countries.

Garza's writing has been published in TIME, Mic, Marie Claire, The Guardian,, Essence Magazine, and The New York Times. She was awarded the 2017 Sydney Peace Prize with Black Lives Matter co-founders Patrisse Cullors and Opal Tometi; was named to Fortune magazine's 2016 list of the "World's Greatest Leaders"; and was a member of the 2016 Tribunal of the US Black Women's Truth and Reconciliation Commission, held at the United Nations. Garza is one of the "100 Women We Love" named by GO Magazine in 2018, a Fast Company 2017 "Most Creative People in Business," and appeared on The Root's 2016 and 2015 lists of "100 African American Achievers and Influencers" and in the POLITICO 50, a guide to thinkers, doers, and visionaries transforming American politics in 2016. Garza also received the 2016 Glamour Women of the Year Award, the 2016 Marie Claire New Guard Award, and in 2016 was named a Community Change Agent at the BET Black Girls Rock Awards.

Garza has an M.A. in ethnic studies from San Francisco State University, and a B.A. in anthropology and sociology from the University of California, San Diego. She lives and works in Oakland, California.

Patrisse Cullors
Artist, organizer, educator, and popular public speaker, Patrisse Cullors is a Los Angeles native and co-founder of the Black Lives Matter Global Network and founder of grassroots Los Angeles-based organization Dignity and Power Now. She is also a senior fellow at MomsRising where she is working on ending maternal mortality and morbidity.

In 2013, Cullors co-founded the global movement with the viral twitter hashtag #BlackLivesMatter, which has since grown to an international organization with dozens of chapters around the world fighting anti-Black racism. In January 2016, she published her memoir, When They Call You a Terrorist: A Black Lives Matter Memoir. Her memoir became an instant New York Times best-seller.

Cullors has been honored with various awards, including: The Sydney Peace Prize Award (2017), Black Woman of the Year Award (2015) from The National Congress of Black Women, Civil Rights Leader for the 21st Century Award (2015) from the Los Angeles Times, Community Change Agent Award (2016) from BLACK GIRLS ROCK! Inc., Women of the Year Award for the Justice Seekers Award (2016) from Glamour, and ESSENCE's first-ever Woke Award.

Cullors is currently a 2019 M.F.A. candidate at the University of Southern California.