Oldways’ African Heritage & Health Ambassador Network is a collective of talented community volunteers dedicated to improving nutrition and public health. The Ambassador Network was designed especially for A Taste of African Heritage teachers who want to take their community outreach work to the next level. Oldways provides Ambassadors with additional outreach support and exclusive materials to be able to offer cooking classes, workshops, and other community health outreach events in their areas.  

We currently have 10 Ambassadors for the 2015 program who have done impactful community work this year. We will be seeking 15 additional Ambassadors in early 2016. We hope that you will join us! To become an Ambassador in your community, please fill our our African Heritage & Health Ambassador Application here.

Meet Our Ambassadors!

Danessa Bowling

Danessa Bolling

Houston, TX
I first came across the A Taste of African Heritage program at the Essence Festival in New Orleans 2 years ago and I was instantly in. Since then it has been a way to bring my love of foods based in rich cultural heritage to the people and communities I love in a fun and educational way. Teaching...
Shirelle Boyd

Shirelle Boyd

Chef Shirelle Boyd is a lover of life who has been a Culinary Professional for more than 20 years. Her culinary career began when she was a cook in the Navy where her passion for cooking grew. She decided that once she finished her duty in the Navy she would pursue a Culinary Arts career. She...
Carrye Brown

Carrye Brown

Washington, DC
An obligation to do a Black History presentation in my church in Washington, DC started my journey to the ATOAH Program. My husband, Larry and I selected the topic of “Food eaten during the middle passage by African enslaved people to America.” Our goal was to highlight healthy foods that sustained...

Toni Colley-Perry

Professor, Folsom Lake College
Sacramento, CA
For sixteen years I held a position as a classified employee for a local school district as a Parent Advisor. I completed my BA in Human Development at Pacific Oaks College in Pasadena, CA. As a seasoned Parent Educator, I applied and completed my Master in Education Leadership with a...

Aqyilah Collins

Certified Integrative Health Coach
Henrico, Virginia
I first learned of the power of food from my grandmother. Miss Berta was one gardening, home-cooking, restaurant owning, community leading, hymn-loving, clairvoyant, prayerful woman! Much of my formative years were spent in the garden and kitchen with her (and my grandpa), hands-on with...
Tiffany Davis

Tiffany Davis

Powdersville, SC
Becoming an A Taste of African Heritage teacher, and now an Oldways Ambassador, has allowed my love of food, community/family and health to come together. I see, hear, and live (through family members) the health disparities within my community. I now have a platform to show people how to choose...
Dejenaba Gordon

Dejenaba Gordon, MPH

Lindenwold, NJ
Dejenaba Gordon originally from Camden, New Jersey has lived in Southern New Jersey for twenty years. She graduated from Sterling High School and attended Temple University where she received a Bachelor of Science in 2009 and Masters of Public Health from Drexel University in May 2012. She...
Adante Hart

Adante Hart

Baltimore, MD
Adante teaches A Taste of African Heritage in Baltimore, Maryland, as a means of addressing the various food and nutrition-related health disparities present in many of the city’s underserved residents. Always interested in food, Adante’s passion for nutrition, in the context of public health was...
Selas Kidane

Selas G. Kidane

St. Louis, MO
I am originally from East Africa, Eritrea, which is the collective cultural heritage of diverse populations. Eritrea shares historic commonalities with the traditions of Ethiopia, Sudan, Somalia, and Djibouti; Eritrea also has some ties with those of the Middle East and Italy. Therefore, Eritrean...
Benita Law Diao

Benita Law-Diao, CDN

Albany, NY
While Benita Law-Diao was working on her Masters Degree program in the Division of Nutrition at Cornell University, she chose to get practical experience through the Maryland State Dept. of Health and Mental Hygiene’s Dietetic internship, which rotated her through a wide range public and private...
Angela Ledyard

Angela Ledyard

Certified Fitness Trainer
Cleveland Heights, OH
I had my struggles with weight in the past and really needed to make some lifestyle changes. One day, I decided that I had to make a change and be in more control of myself. I was letting everything else – work, stress – control me. I refocused myself and awakened to a new path in life through...
Gail Thorpe

Gail Thorpe, CHHC

Plainfield, NJ
Gail Thorpe is Board Certified from Purchase College of the State University of New York (SUNY) and Board Certified and Accredited by the American Association of Drugless Practitioner. She is a Board Certified Integrative Health Coach from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition Graduate Program and...

Calvis Williamson

Ocala, FL
Calvis Williamson is the founder of The Afro Whisperer Group, LLC. Her passion for holistic health and wellness grew out of wanting to see her family, friends, and community live better. She is currently an Ambassador for the African Heritage and Health Program offered through Oldways...
Lorri Wilson

Lorri Wilson

Bridgeport, CT
In 1989, I had a career change, attended culinary school and became a professional Chef. Since then I have worked in Fine Dining, Instuitional, and Educational facilities. In 2013 I attended the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, becoming a Holistic Health Coach. My introduction to Oldways came...