Nobody is going to teach you your true history, teach you your true heroes, if they know that that knowledge will help set you free.
— Assata Shakur

Hella Alex Abebe

Program Manager

Education Background: African American Studies, Sociology, Developmental Psychology

Last two professional locations and titles:  Grade Team Leader/Kindergarten Teacher, Teach For America; Corps Member

Who inspired your love of literacy and why? The love of literacy has always permeated in many aspects of my life. Having a range of diverse professors and mentors who taught me how to critically think, analyze, and challenge what I'm digesting was truly the jumpstart in my passion for literacy. The peak of my inspiration then came from the thirty 5-year-old children I taught. I watched from start to finish how transferable being literate in content subjects contributes to the holistic development of the child.

What was your favorite childhood book? Crysanthemum by Kevin Henkes

What inspires you to support literacy? The entire community in which I interact with continues to inspire me to support literacy. Everyone from principals to parents and all staff members I engage with daily bring to life the work being done. 

What is your favorite literary hobby? Aside from reading through books and magazines in my day-to-day routines, understanding the literacy behind music and lyrics has been extremely powerful to me.

What makes Literacy Trust special to you? I love how we empower and inspire our people in the work we do. Hearing the various success stories from the community and pairing that with the goal of becoming a social justice organization has truly made me reflect on how fortunate I am to be working alongside such great individuals.