The staff that keeps the fight for Equity moving
Co-Founder & Co-Executive Director
Tequila Johnson is an award-winning cause driven community organizer and strategist whose work focuses on creating equity and increasing civic engagement among Black Americans and other communities of color. She has been recognized for educating communities of color about the political process, relevant economic, social, and political issues, the impacts of impending legislation, and providing people with the tools to exercise self-agency. She has been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, on CNN, MSNBC and around the country. Johnson is the co-founder and co-executive director of The Equity Alliance, a Tennessee-based nonprofit that equips Black and brown citizens with tools and strategies to strengthen their communities and make government work better. In 2018, Johnson served as the statewide manager for the Tennessee Black Voter Project, a statewide coalition of nearly two dozen local nonprofits working together toward the goal of registering 50,000 Black Tennesseans to vote. The group, under Johnson’s leadership, submitted 91,000 voter registration forms. In addition to her involvement in local politics and community organizing, Johnson is also the founder and CEO of The Equity Consulting Group, LLC, a firm specializing in issue advocacy, government relations, community relations and media strategy.
She served as campaign manager and lead strategist for newcomer Christiane Buggs’ successful Metro Nashville School Board election and has provided strategic oversight, analysis and field operations for a variety of political organizations. Her
Work in and for the community has earned widespread praise and recognition. Her awards include: 2020 Roddenberry Civil Rights Fellow, 2019 Human Rights Coalition Rising Advocate Award, The Nashville Business Journal’s Women of Influence Award 2019; Nashville Chamber of Commerce’s Small Business Superstar 2019; the NAACP Ella Baker Power Award 2019; the Women’s Political Collaborative of Tennessee’s Movers and Shakers Award 2018; Nashville
Business’ 100 Leading African Americans 2018; Nashville Black 40 Under 40 2018; and Nashville Voice’s 2018 Nashvillian of the Year. Johnson was a featured presenter at the 2018 Healthy and Free Tennessee Reproductive Rights Summit, in 2019 at the national Unrig Summit, and in 2019 at the Muslim Women’s Conference in Abu Dhabi, UAE. Johnson is a graduate of Tennessee State University, where she received her master’s degree in counseling psychology and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in industrial and organizational psychology. Additionally she is a certified project manager and holds a graduate certificate in grant writing and nonprofit, public and organizational management. She currently serves on the Metro Nashville Industrial Development Board (2020), the sustainable business coalition, and is a Board Member for Creative Girls Rock. When she’s not working, she enjoys singing in her church choir, doing crossfit, and spending time with her daughter.
Jessica Williams, Communications Director
Jessica Williams is a self-proclaimed Nashvillian, imported from Detroit, Michigan and a graduate of Tennessee State University. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Integrated Marketing Communications and she is a member of Alpha Kappa Psi Professional Business Fraternity, Inc. Throughout her professional career she has positioned herself in the arena of non-profit communications, marketing, and events.
Over the last five years, Jessica has built relationships through advocacy and marketing within the Nashville non-profit community, including working with the Lupus Foundation of America, Mid-South Chapter and YWCA of Nashville & Middle Tennessee. She is an experienced and dedicated communications and social media strategist, specializing in growth and brand management. As the communications director, Jessica is charged with curating the organization’s voice, securing the brand, and furthering its statewide impact.
Director of programs and special projects
Tamika White is a native Nashvillian, pursuing her bachelor’s degree in business management and leadership. She serves as Regional Vice Chair for District 5 with the Davidson County Democratic Party.
She’s been a part of the TEAm since 2016, beginning as a volunteer using her passion for connecting the dots to help people understand the political process. This eventually led to her becoming the statewide volunteer manager.
As director of programs and special projects she researches, develops, and implements all TEA programs, while leading volunteer operations.
REGIONAL ORGANIZING DIRECTOR, MIDDLE TN
Growing up in Tennessee with parents as educators, giving back has always been RaCarol Woodard’s foundation. During childhood, she understood and believed in the power to give people knowledge to ensure a better community, economy, and nation.
A graduate of Middle Tennessee State University, she majored in political science and minored in criminal justice. Everyone has a calling, and this is hers! As an organizer, she is the bridge to help fill the gap and make sure that democracy is best achieved when everyone participates.
Lajuana “LJ” Abraham,
REGIONAL ORGANIZING DIRECTOR, West TN
LJ Abraham is a proud Memphian who first moved to West TN during childhood. Although born in Germany to a military family and having lived in multiple places, Memphis and West TN have been and always will be home.
LJ’s entrance into social justice activism came as a result of her disgust with Black people being shot and killed by police. What began as impassioned social media posts in 2012 led her to participate in community conversations, protests, and eventually lead full scale organizing efforts. Since being in the movement space, she’s evolved her once-shy voice into a fierce siren for Black communities and issues.
Inspired by the free refrigerator movement in Portland, Oregon, LJ launched 901 Community Fridges, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and provider of free refrigerated food and beverage items intentionally placed within three Memphis communities to combat food insecurity. 901 Community Fridges received national attention in a TIME article highlighting the free refrigerator movement across the U.S.
LJ has a people-centered personality and brings career experience from hospitality, retail, and administrative industries. She is eager to connect, champion, and bring valuable change for West TN as a regional organizing director.
When it’s time to relax, LJ enjoys spending time with her family – especially her nieces and nephews, and pets.
Tereva Parham serves as our consultant communications manager to strengthen our voice and further our impact through email and website engagement, production engineer for Porch Politics, and event moderator.
Since 2017, she has held roles within TEA as a volunteer, on our Leadership TEAm as an event logistics liaison, and partner in Black Women for Tennessee. Tereva is a courageous communicator with diverse experience in organizational and corporate communications, copywriting, public relations, broadcast and voiceovers, and corporate social responsibility for multi-industry clientele.
Tereva earned a Bachelor of Arts in Music Business from Illinois State University, Master of Arts in Strategic Communication, and certificate of Corporate Social Responsibility from the University of Colorado – Boulder. She is the owner of TerevaFeva, a communications and media consultancy.
liberTEA collective coordinator
Terrica Arnold is a Louisiana native who was raised in Georgia. She earned degrees in political science and educational leadership from two Nashville gems: Fisk University and Tennessee State University.
Terrica has dedicated over ten years to community-based minority health disparity research and programming, service learning, and student academic achievement. In recent years, she has supported health equity through policy research and training future minority health care professionals. As LiberTEA Collective coordinator, she directs the program’s curriculum, partnerships, cohort support, and impact efforts.
Sherese DaSilva is a Brooklyn, NY native who spent her formative years in the Caribbean. Heavily influenced by the working women in her family, she developed an appreciation for valuing family, education, and serving the local community.
She has a professional background in small business management and is passionate about cultivating good stewardship of communities and the environment.
Sherese earned a bachelors in political science and minor in public administration from Fisk University. She is currently pursuing a graduate certificate in public policy and a Master of Public Administration from Tennessee State University.