Nakita Shavers is a native of New Orleans and has a long history of community advocacy and education. She is the founder and executive director of the Dinerral Shavers Educational Fund (DSEF), which provides programs and initiatives to promote youth empowerment, community development, and enhanced educational opportunities in the city of New Orleans. She is also co-founder of Silence Is Violence Anti-Violence Organization. As a graduate of McDonogh #35 Sr. High School and the New Orleans Center for Science and Math High School, she has always possessed an esteemed desire to make New Orleans a better place. Nakita is a graduate of Florida A&M University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science Pre-law, a graduate of Walden University with a Master of Public Administration with a Specialization in Non-Profit Management & Leadership, a graduate of Loyola University’s Institute of Politics, and a recent graduate of Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Executive Education.
As a program creator, Nakita is responsible for the conception and implementation of DSEF’s Music and Cultural Education Program, and GIRLA NOLA Initiative, in addition to many key initiatives hosted by the organization. Nakita is also the Music and Arts Coordinator at the Youth Empowerment Project, where she is responsible for creating and developing all music and arts programming, while affecting the lives of Central City Youth.
In December of 2014, Nakita was chosen as a “Youth Champion” by the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, joining a next generation cohort of 22 youth leaders from the United States, Ethiopia, Pakistan, and India to champion the cause of Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights nationally and internationally. As a Youth Champion, Nakita created GIRLS NOLA (Girls Initiative for Reproducing Leaders in Society), an arts-integrated sexual and reproductive health program in New Orleans that works to educate and empower young women to lead. Nakita has become an international voice for the Sexual Reproductive Health & Rights, adding the experiences of the African American female to the international conversation. To this end, Nakita has traveled to Bali Indonesia, Copenhagen Denmark, and Berlin Germany, and the United Nations to speak at international conferences surrounding reproductive health.
Nakita is a media favorite. As she has been featured in the CBS 48 Hours Mystery’s Emmy nominated episode Storm of Murder, CNN’s One Crime at a Time, Spike Lee’s documentary If God Is Willing and The Creek Don’t Rise, and HBO’s Treme' Season 2 Episode 5 Slip Away. Her work with DSEF continues to grace the headlines of local print and television media. Nakita recently added writer to her list of achievements as her most recent blogs, “America Is In A State of Crisis, Too” was published by Huffington Post, and “America is in a State of Crisis- and Women of Color are at War” was recently published by Ms. Magazine. Nakita Shavers is a woman of true strength and diversity. She personifies humanitarianism and philanthropy in everything that she does, and as a future politician, she is determined to fight for justice and equitable opportunities for all.
Keishell McCollum is a native of New Orleans, LA. She has countless of experience with community service working with the youth of New Orleans. She is a graduate of Frederick A. Douglass High School, and is currently a Psychology student at Walden University. Keishell has always been determined to make an impact on youth in her community. As a wife and mother of three, she strives to show her family how to give back to their community through her actions. She is the Student Support Manager at New Orleans Job Corps, where her chief priority is to service the youth of New Orleans and surrounding areas. She is also a longtime volunteer of the Dinerral Shavers Education Fund. To this end, Keishell has been influential in the implementation of many key initiatives, such as lead instructor for DSEF’s Music and Cultural Education Program as well as its GIRLS NOLA initiative.
Jasmine Moore is a native of New Orleans, LA and giving is her calling. She possess a Bachelor's of Psychology from Xavier University and a Master of Social Work from Southern University. Jasmine is a caring advocate for youth all over the country. She has served as a the Workforce Development Coordinator and Social Media Manager for disadvantaged teens at Boys and Girls Club in Los Angeles. Capturing the highlights and artwork of BGC members, Jasmine became a published photographer for the Venice Times Magazine. Jasmine's experience is versatile; she's also spent months working with special needs students in Hawaii.
Always willing to help, Jasmine has several hundred hours of volunteer experience with local organizations and schools such as: Youth Empowerment Project, Posh Expressions Youth Dance, McDonogh 35 High School, and DSEF. Jasmine is a very passionate, self-taught creative. She has been a loyal volunteer with DSEF for over 5 years and is now the official DSEF graphic designer, photographer, social media, and website director.
Quinette Collins is a New Orleans native, determined to give back and to help shape the life and health of its people. She is currently an Outreach Coordinator with the Cancer Association of Greater New Orleans, where she advocate for patient assistance and is eager to share health resources for local cancer patients. She obtained her Bachelor of Science from Xavier University of Louisiana in 2013. Although with initial aspirations to go to medical school, she found herself delving into the field of public health and developed a passion for preventative behavioral and community health sciences. She obtained her Masters of Public Health in 2015, and has since continued to gain professional experience in the fields of Clinical Research and Health Education. During her time as an adolescent sexual health educator, she fostered her natural penchant to connect with youth and to empower them to make safe and healthy decisions as they advocate for their own health. Quinette continues to educate and to empower youth through DSEF’s GIRLS NOLA Initiative. She looks to make an impact by educating individuals of all ages on how to better take care of and advocate for their own health and choices.