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Instilling within everyone courage to run toward freedom


 To dismantle systemic oppression and usher in a new era of empathy by producing participatory-action research, human resource initiatives and reallocating wealth to Black and Brown DEI* consultants and researchers across American industries.

*diversity, equity and inclusion


Meet Nicole Johnson (she/her)

In addition to being Founder and Lead Curator of the Harriet Tubman Effect, Nicole Johnson is a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Director across five industries. In this Tedx Talk, Nicole discusses using the five senses to tell the stories that shift American systems. Nicole's research explores organizational theory and the neuroscience of diversity, equity and inclusion. She is currently leading several capacity building initiatives across the institute to support the 54+ researchers at Harriet Tubman Effect and is actively accepting new consulting clients in theater, K-12, Higher Ed and corporate America.

How To Support Nicole

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Always Challenge Tradition


 Including Community



Relevant Work


An Era of Empathy


The Four Pillars of Wealth



Nearly 160 years ago, on June 1, 1863 Tubman coordinated the Combahee River Raid. Her covert interactions had given rise to vital information: torpedoes had been placed at specific locations along the riverbanks. The knowledge enabled three Union gunboats to safely navigate the waters, and in the process, transport soldiers who successfully destroyed several estates owned by prominent secessionists. As those soldiers were offloaded from the boats, enslaved people boarded. That night, more than 700 enslaved people were rescued and freed. 

Our work is rooted in this spirit of historical justice advocacy; Tubman and countless others have instilled within us the courage to not only run toward our due freedom, but to also liberate our brothers and sisters along the way. We take our own first steps now - as researchers, practitioners, and leaders who collectively commit to resisting white supremacy, developing relevant work for our communities, and galvanizing empathy across cultures. 

We are thrilled that you have decided to join us on this journey.


Thank you for joining us, honoring Harriet Tubman, her legacy and it's continued impact on our efforts to dismantle systemic oppression.


Current Industries & Institutions

The institute’s collective work is a mechanism for behavioral change in American workplaces. Our Evergreen and Efficacy Fellows are at the center of this effort: their research and revision generates a Harriet Tubman Effect (HTE), or a transformation defined by dismantling systemically oppressive structures - and supplanting them with tangible pathways for empathy, empowerment, and justice. 

The HTEI is thus housed within organizations that seek to undergo such a transformation. The business partnership is unique: each organization serves as fiscal support for HTEI personnel and programming, which is curated to dismantle the systemic oppression that that organization exhibits. 

The HTEI is embedded in the following industries and institutions: 

Theatre Industry 

K-12 Education

Higher Education

Corporate America 

Houses of Worship 

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Get to know our Team


Nicole Johnson (she/her)

Adventurer and Igniter

Founder of the HTEI, focus on corporate America and higher education, curriculum design and
diversity, equity, and inclusion Strategy.


Bee Harris (she/her)

Illustrator and Policy Advocate

Creating vibrant art that inspires herself and others to embrace a life of color and to see the full spectrum of existence.

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Rawlin Rosario (he/him)

Educator and Mentor

K-12 and higher education, school equity strategy, and leadership development specialist. Shifting school policy and cultural competency.

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Belén Moyano (she/her/ella)

Torch Bearer and Builder

Building on the visionary ideas of advocates and creating resources to help serve their communities.

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Emma Barishman (she/her)

Amplifier and Researcher

Researching white supremacy in the musical theater industry and its effect on professional wellness.

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Sarah Powell (she/her)

Information Seeker/Communicator/Healer

Education Operations Director of the Harriet Tubman Effect with a focus on Music Theatre and Corporate America.

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Natalie Alterman (she/her)

Educator/Amplifier/Community Builder

A lifetime educator who fiercely advocates for equitable systems of schools, charitable giving, and democracy.

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Zuri Washington (she/her)

Speaker of Truth

K-12 Charter School Equity Advocate and media content curator in the Musical Theater Industry for truth seeking and resisting white supremacy.


Cate Benioff (she/her)

Illuminator and Content Creator

Musical theatre researcher of historical and present white supremacy. Cate is passionate about creating safe spaces of belonging for all theatre workers.

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Carlita Victoria (she/her)

Mental health advocate and Founder of Darkness RISING Nonprofit, consistently fighting for equitable and plentiful resources for marginalized communities. 

Mental Health Educator 

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Daryl A Ritchie (they/them)

Navigator and Mediator

Performing arts administrator and strategist. Providing support and crafting policies that affect sustainable institutional change.


  • Celebrating A New World
    Mon, Sep 12
    Vimeo Live Broadcast
    A Vimeo Live broadcast and fundraiser for our upcoming 52-week dismantling systemic oppression program: A New World.
  • A New World Annual Program
    Fri, Sep 16
    Online Series
    A 52-week program consisting of an ongoing research study, weekly meetings and accountability practice for professionals looking to dismantle systemic oppression and white supremacy culture in workplaces.


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