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Afia Walking Tree Resume

Spirit Drumz San Francisco Bay Area, California 1996 to Present
Position: Founder, Visionary Director, Lead Facilitator, Instructor


  • 20-year tenure as freelance educational consultant and adjunct instructor in Feminist Studies, Transformative Leadership, and African Diasporic Music and Percussion
  • Seasoned multi-instrument percussionist, composer, singer, songwriter, recording artist with training and expertise in African Diasporic music genres, Jazz, R&B, Hip Hop, Rock & Roll
  • Extensive Management and Supervision experience in public and private sectors
  • Exceptional oral and written, interpersonal communication prioritizing ethical relationships, motivational speaking, diplomacy, confidentiality, customer satisfaction
  • Advanced Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint and Internet Navigation


    Adjunct Instruction and Freelance Educational Consulting

  • Taught Special Education practices and curricula for three years in various New York City schools; designed distinctive Masters Thesis Portfolio on Multiple Intelligences of At-Risk Adolescents
  • Develop and taught Black Feminism: A New Pedagogy course 40 undergraduates at Vassar College
  • Developed and taught Transformative Leadership: Exploring Our Diversities and Consensus Communication Practices courses, improved communication, moral, and retention in over 100 client organizations.(Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organization, California Institute of Integral Studies, California State University-Monterey Bay, Cultural Council of Santa Cruz County, Evergreen State College, Institute for Transpersonal Psychology, Making Waves Education Program, New College, Santa Rosa Junior College, and UC Santa Cruz)
  • Developed and taught results-driven elementary, undergraduate/graduate diversity/cultural competency courses, personal transformational seminars, and community activism strategies prioritizing women and youth (Health Adventures and Visioning, Education Network, Bank Street College of Education, Planned Parenthood, UC Santa Cruz Food Task Force, Sistahs SteppinÕ in Pride, Women Drummers International)
  • Masters in Special Education with completed portfolio on ÒMultiple Intelligences of Adolescents

  • Percussion Studies and Performing Arts

  • Developed dynamic percussion curricula: FunDRUMentals, Drum-Talk-Story, Drum Our Souls Free for children, youth, and adults to activate multiple intelligences, community building, and transpersonal healing in schools and organizations; prioritized music history, folklore, and culturally relevant language
  • Developed performing arts curricula for environmental science academies for Special Needs adolescents with varying degrees of behavioral, emotional, physical functionality, leadership and life skills (Bank Street College of Education, Vassar College, Bard College, East Oakland Leadership Academy, King Estates Middle School, Oakland Conservatory of Music)
  • Extensive lead facilitation of African drum, dance, and village culture all over the US, Canada, London, Poland, Jamaica, Guinea and Ghana
  • International touring solo, studio, and accompanist performances span across 20 states in North America, and 10 countries in Europe, Africa, and Asia

  • Management, Supervision, and Program Coordination

  • Founder and Executive Director for 14-year educational consulting start-up company with national recognition on Public Radio, TV, and internet (1996 to present)
  • Human Resource administrative management for Target Stores, Manpower Staffing, and Shutterfly
  • Management university multi-facility housing-residential department for over 540 on-campus students, prioritized multi-cultural theme-housing, cultural competency that sustained retention over three years
  • Effectively marketed on-campus housing, and acted as booking agent for performances and workshops
  • Designed management structures for ÒThe Underground Drum Sanctuary Community Center (served over 1500),Ó and various camps and retreats
  • Coordinated auditions, rehearsals, productions; managed stage member logistics; created events flyer
  • Coordinated weekly meetings, scheduling, travel; wrote and transcribed minutes, contracts
  • Recruited, evaluated, and supervised diverse youth and adult teams for on-campus programs at Bank Street, Bard College, and Vassar College (1991 to 1995), and UCSC (1995 to 1998)
  • Designed and implemented inclusive management infrastructure, policies, procedures, admissions applications, and new member orientation over career span

  • Public Speaking/Interviews

  • California Institute for Integral Studies Guest Lecturer, 2003 to 2010
  • Turn on the Lights Benefit for Ghana Girls, Together We Can, January 2010
  • Santa Rosa Junior College, World History - Judy Helfand, Afraka Journey, 2006, 2010
  • NPR National Broadcast by Lonny Shavelson The Underground Drum Sanctuary and Harriet Tubman, 2004
  • Bay Area Business WomenÕs News, East Bay Lesbians March to the Beat of Their Own Drums, July 2004
  • AAPCHO, Asian Pacific Health Organization, Gender Dynamics, 2003
  • Oakes College, Activism, and Community Responsibility, 2003
  • Desert Sun Newspaper, Give Peace a Chance, October 2003
  • Bay Area Business WomenÕs News The Underground Drum Sanctuary in East Oakland, Spring 2003
  • Oakland Tribune Walking Tree of Spirit Drumz leads Sistahs Steppin/ March with Drums, Sept 2002
  • UCSC MLK Convocation I am Alive, (Opened for Alice Walker), Civic Auditorium, 2002
  • Santa Rosa Junior College Graduation, Affirmationz: Tools for Achieving our Dreams, 2002
  • Black Sistahs United Intimate Sisterhood Gathering, Building Community, 2000
  • Bay Area Business WomenÕs News, Community Activists Respond to 911, September 2001
  • Asian and Pacific Islander Student Alliance High Motivational Conference; 1998 and 1999
  • KZSC 88.1FM, Ladies of Jazz Program, Soul Affirmationz CD Release, Santa Cruz, California; April 1999
  • Village Heartbeat Magazine, California, Spiritual Leader and Drummer; December 1998
  • University of California at Santa Cruz, Independent Project: Local Santa Cruz Artist Lives; October 1998
  • WomenÕs Voices Newspaper, Walking Tree: Walking Her Joy, September 1998
  • KPFA 94.1FM, Elemental Roots Show, Berkeley, California; September 1998
  • Audio/Visual Recordings

  • Spirit Drumz Enews: Online Drumming News on The Medicine of the Drum, 2008 to Present
  • Charlie Vaughn CD, audio, July 2009
  • I Am The Drum Journal of Daily Affirmationz, 2005, 2008, 2010
  • Life in Afraka Documentary Film, October 2005
  • Into the Rhythm by Debbie Nargi and Friends, September 2004
  • Sum Of Us Quartet CD, California, April 2003
  • Gather The Women Theme Song with Electric Angel Band, Feb 2003
  • Soul Affirmationz CD by Afia Walking Tree, May 2000
  • Liberty Partnerships Program, New York; Video documentary for Summer Academy, August 1999
  • Afia Walking Tree Live, Santa Rosa Public Access, August 1998
  • Spirit Drumz: Affirming Community Spirit through Percussion and Ritual, Video documentary, 1998
  • In Da House: Multicultural Theme Housing at Oakes College, Video documentary, September 1995
  • Souls AÕ Gathered CD by Ase Drumming Circle, New York; 1994
  • Awards & Honors

  • San Francisco Vanguard Sabbatical Grant. $14,500, May 2005.
  • Afraka 2005 Project- Spirit Drumz raised $20,000 for Walking Tree to Souljourn to Guinea and Ghana, as an Ambassador to learn rhythms, culture, and study with master healers and drummers; January to April 2005.
  • Community Coronation Ceremony, honored and crowned Afia Walking Tree, Amazon Queen: Sa Chet Kuti Wa, for her immense life path journey as a visionary, masterful drummer and healer; December 19, 2004.
  • Oakland Cultural Funding Grant. $4,800 For FunDRUMentals Workshop Series for Women. 2002-2003.
  • Shirley Oakes Butler Scholarship award for international students: Full tuition package for three years. 1987 to 1990.
  • African American Student Life Community Appreciation Award, University of California at Santa Cruz. 1995-1996.
  • MasterÕs Thesis Portfolio Project: Multiple Life Skills for Adolescents at Risk of School Failure received honors and acclaim as the first of its kind to address the needs of inner-city adolescents using the renowned Bank Street CollegeÕs Early Childhood Special Education framework. May 1994

    Partial List of Teachers, Coaches, and Mentors

  • Edwina Tyler
  • Debbie McGee
  • Phyllis Bethel
  • Babatunde Olatunji
  • Fred Simpson
  • Mabiba Baegne
  • Abdulai Diakete
  • Mamady Keita
  • Jules Stept
  • Lea Arellano
  • Lamine Bangoura
  • Yamoussa Soumah
  • Lamine Dibo Camara
  • Chief Nana Brakatu Brempong III
  • Master Alex Feng (Tai Chi)
  • Master Bingkun Hu (Chi Gong)


  • West African (Djembe, Dununs, Krin, Gongoma, Kpanlogo, Ngoma, Dance, Song, Storytelling)
  • Afro-Caribbean (Nyabingi, Steel Pan, Calypso)
  • Afro-Cuban (Congas, Shekeres, Bells, Bongos, Batas, to name a few)
  • Voice and Body Percussion
  • Afro-Brazilian (Surdo, Repinique, Agogo, Ganza, Tamborim)
  • Afro-Haitian (Manman, Segon, Boula)
  • Indonesian Gamelan
  • Japanese Taiko
  • Middle Eastern, (Dumbek, Riqq, Bodran, Bindir)


    Bank Street College of Education
    Masters in Special Education (M.Ed.) May 1994
    Special Education & Adolescent Development

    Vassar College
    Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) May 1990
    Psychology, Africana & Women's Studies

    LaGuardia Community College
    Dean's List March 1986 to July 1987
    Accounting and Liberal Arts

    Contact Afia Walking Tree at 510-534-9603 spiritdrumz@me.com

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