Briaunna Embrey-Banks is the CEO & Founder of Owning My Blackness (OMB) and Owning My Blackness Consulting. Embrey-Banks is a double regional award winner, being recognized as the 2023 Mid-Atlantic Association of College & University Housing Officers Annual Conference Best Presentation by a New Professional award winner and the 2021 Mid-Atlantic Association of College & University Housing Officers Commitment to Social Justice award recipient. Embrey-Banks also volunteers with the local branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). She is currently getting her Masters Degree at the University of Maryland Baltimore in Diversity,Equity, Inclusion, and Leadership. She recently just received a Bachelor's Degree at York College of Pennsylvania with a major in Criminal Justice and a double minor in Creative Writing and African American Studies.
The first semester in person following the Covid-19 lockdown, Briaunna Embrey-Banks worked as a Resident Assistant (RA) on her college campus. As part of her RA duties she was required to plan events on campus, due to the national outcry around the Black Lives Matter Movement, Embrey-Banks came up with the idea for an original event Black Out 4 Black Lives. Black Out 4 Black Lives was an event that allowed a safe space for students and staff to learn about the Black Lives Matter Movement, the controversies around it, the historical context of the movement as well as giving the platform for personal stories, poetry, music, etc for students to express their feelings on the topic. While planning Black Out 4 Black Lives, Embrey-Banks begin to see the effects in real time of systematic racism in education, as you went through many hurdles other RAs did not experience while planning this event, due to a rumor between the staff at her institution saying that she was planning a protest instead of a RA event. Despite these hurdles Embrey-Banks hosted the only in person event on her college campus that semester, Black Out 4 Black Lives. After creating a large scale successful event that surrounded the Black Lives Matter Movement, Embrey-Banks' experiences feeling the pressures of systematic racism in education only continued to grow. Book Briaunna Embrey-Banks as your next speaker to learn how despite these growing pressures she turned Black Out 4 Black Lives into a multi-institutional organization, Owning My Blackness that works to educate, advocate and elevate for Black Students and then adding the addition of a business branch, Owning My Blackness Consulting that works to reduce systematic racism in education.