Racial Agency Initiative LLC is a resource for racial justice leadership coaching. As a new start-up founded by Jeanelle Austin, this company seeks to provide people who seek to practice racial justice with a coach to maximize their effectiveness.
Pursuing racial justice with joy is the vision. Encouraging people to practice racial justice within their scope of influence is the purpose. Coaching people to leverage their agency for racial justice is the work.
Initially envisioned October 2017, Jeanelle Austin imagined a service for people who care about the problem of racism, and often find themselves asking the question, “What can I do?” Two years later, this vision has become a reality, officially launching October 2019.
Founder | Director | Coach
In 2004, Jeanelle was tasked to guide people in their understanding of race and diversity. That work stimulated her passion to support people on their journeys of confronting race and racism. Since then, now over 15 years, Jeanelle has engaged race on personal and institutional levels, working with individuals and key leaders at institutions, including at Messiah College, Fuller Theological Seminary, and the Pasadena Police Department in Pasadena, CA. She has experience with organizing race and diversity events, facilitating small groups, mobilizing communities, and inspiring people through public speaking and writing. Through her work, Jeanelle is committed to leveraging her agency for racial justice.
Erica Harris DeValve
2020-2021 RAI Apprentice
Erica Harris DeValve graduated from Princeton University in 2017 with degrees in English and African American Studies (AAS). In Princeton’s AAS department, Erica focused much of her study on the black experience in political and religious spaces. A particular interest in the intersection of race and Christianity in the U.S. led her to theological studies following undergrad. She is currently pursuing her Masters of Divinity from Fuller Theological Seminary with an emphasis on race and Christian ethics. She has experience in local activism and advocacy, with groups focusing on racial justice and criminal justice reform. Erica’s writing has been published by The Root and Newsweek. Following the completion of her master’s program in 2021, Erica plans to continue to engage in justice work.
The broken “R” represents the brokenness that race has caused in our communities. The pointed “A” represents the pivot point of a lever. Everything depends on the pivot point. True justice is our pivot point. The strong “I” represents the strength(s) we have to take initiative and influence others. Finally, the circles. When we engage our agency for racial justice, we engage within the context of community. The circles around the initials RAI represent the the various communities we belong to as individuals. They do not always intersect, but we still have capacity to influence each of them.