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Stories of Resistance: Learning from Black Women in Early Care and Education

by Alissa Mwenelupembe
ITEM #: 3600587
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Stories of Resistance is a robust and meaningful collection, weaving threads of the personal, professional and political into a vibrant tapestry of becoming. Twelve leaders in early care and education come together to share authentically and proudly their vision, fortitude, passion and courage. Their stories invite you to join a circle, draw strength and inspiration, and take new action in your own work in the world.


"Seats at the decision-making table can be quite seductive - cause one to lose one’s head. The search for answers to the questions, How did it happen? Why am I here? can be unsettling. The personal stories of the Black women contributing to Stories of Resistance offer powerful rationales for the “hows and whys.” The seat(s) are for those committed to operationalizing “what ought to be” - a place where equity and social justice prevail as the default mode. The seat’s power is situational depending heavily on its occupant; she who is unapologetically centered at the apex of her cultural intersections; she who is propelled by an urgency to find and with a high degree of intentionality make her voice heard. Her seat moves with her!"

- Jerlean Daniel, PhD, Former Executive Director, National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)

"Much appreciation to Alissa Mwenelupembe and the other brave women who have shared their poignant stories for this important book. It is long past time for leaders of color with strong voices, powerful stories and new thinking to be heard. Their stories call out, push back and transcend the white centered perspectives and power structures that have dominated the field of early childhood for too long. Along with the compelling content, this book is beautifully designed with inspirational words, quotes and photos of the courageous women who are featured. We have much to learn from this book as we decenter whiteness and transform our profession."

- Deb Curtis, Toddler and Adult Educator, Author

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • Rooted: Theressa Lenear
  • Authentic: Jerletha Mcdonald
  • Defining: Cynthia Davis-Vanloo
  • Determined: Joyce Jackson
  • Limitless: Nadiyah Taylor
  • Reassurance: Brandy James
  • Passion: Rukia Rogers
  • Rebirth: Crystal Sanford-Brown
  • Intersectionality: Meghan L. Green
  • Resolute: Olga Lacayo
  • Planted: Kelly Ramsey
  • Resilience: Alissa Mwenelupembe
  • Afterword

About the Author

Alissa Mwenelupembe has spent the last twenty years navigating her space to find her seat at the table. Alissa started her career in early childhood education as an assistant teacher in a two-year-old classroom. Since that time she has held the roles of teacher, director, coach/mentor, content specialist, and now leads the early learning accreditation system for the National Association for the Education of Young Children. Alissa is a passionate advocate for young children, their families, and their educators. She is currently pursuing her doctorate in early childhood education at Ball State University.

ISBN: 978-0-942702-82-8