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Strong Alumni, Strong Communities for Generations to Come.

Advancing a legacy of excellence!

Our Story

The beginning of the OKC Black Alumni Coalition (OBAC) traces back to a university course assignment in the 2018-2019 academic year. Five students enrolled at the OU School of Social Work—Shawntay Alexander, Robyn Alfred, Porsha Burden, Caitlyn Stephenson, and Karen Wilson—undertook a final project as part of their studies. Their assignment was to develop and nurture a grassroots initiative within a desired community.

That spring semester, Oklahoma City Public Schools (OKCPS), the largest urban school district in Oklahoma City, underwent a significant school consolidation plan called Pathways to Greatness (P2G). Driven by declining enrollment, P2G would controversially repurpose 15 schools, disrupt the grade bands within the Spencer feeder pattern, and transform the predominantly black Northeast High School to the application school, Classen SAS at Northeast. Recognizing the potential adverse impact of P2G, the five students pivoted their project focus towards supporting black students and families through this contentious initiative.

The five students initiated discussions with Councilperson Nikki Nice and alumni leaders of predominantly black schools in the Oklahoma City area spanning two school districts: OKCPS (including Douglass, Dunjee—closed during integration—John Marshall, Northeast, and Star Spencer) as well as Millwood. Their aim was to mobilize community members to advocate collectively for the future of their communities and to interface with school administrations on a broader scale to champion the interests of black youth.

OKCPS’ Pathways to Greatness concluded swiftly. However, the graduate students persisted in their efforts as encouraged by the project gatekeepers. Post graduation, Shawntay Alexander emerged as the identified leader of the coalition, supported by her  founding peers and the alumni advisors. Over the subsequent two years, the group continued to meet regularly, culminating in the incorporation of the OKC Black Alumni Coalition as a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization in the fall of 2021.

 

During this period of organization, pivotal events like the emergence of the 2020 Covid Pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement emphasized the importance of establishing a black educational network. In the latest developments, numerous bills aimed at challenging Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives in public colleges are currently pending nationwide. Furthermore, following a wave of DEI-focused hiring initiatives that commenced in late 2020, there are indications that certain businesses are now retracting their efforts.

There exists a strong correlation between education and life outcomes, which significantly affect not only individuals but also the broader family structures and communities. OBAC aims to leverage educational connections through its network to effect positive, impactful, and sustainable change for generations to come. 

The vision of OKC Black Alumni Coalition is encapsulated in the acronym REAP: Relationships, Excellence, Advocacy, and Placemaking. 

Our Mission

The mission of OBAC is to increase the black community's social, political, economic, and educational capital in the Oklahoma City metropolitan area

Our Pillars

Relationship

Excellence

Advocacy

Placemaking

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Shawntay Alexander

Executive Director, Star Spencer HS

Class of 2005

Our Team.

Meet our Chair and Advisory board members

Our Advisory

Richard Clark

Northeast HS - Class of 1986

Melodie Moore

Northeast HS - Class of 1986

Warren Pete

John Marshall HS - Class of 1992

Orville Prince

Douglass HS - Class of 1965

Regina Richardson

Millwood HS - Class of 1978

Tanya Ruffin-Mustin

Star Spencer HS - Class of 1981

Carrie Smith

Dunjee HS - Class of 1972

Marilyn Wallace-Mitchell

Dunjee HS - Class of 1972

Councilperson Nikki Nice

Northeast HS (Gatekeeper) - Class of 1998

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