Alumni Spotlight Cassia Herron - Community Organizer, Consultant, Freelance Writer Education: BA, Liberal Studies; Pan-African Studies minor
Community Organizer, Consultant, Freelance Writer
Education: BA, Liberal Studies; Pan-African Studies minor
Background: I came to UofL because I received the Woodford R. Porter Scholarship. I was interested in architecture and food [but] I came to Louisville not knowing what I wanted to do. The beauty of a liberal arts education is the opportunity to learn from and blend different disciplines and perspectives into whatever lane you are building for yourself.
Campus Mentors: I never took one of Dr. Blaine Hudson's classes, but we worked together to create the policy that every freshman had to take a diversity course. He counseled [students] as we navigated the University. Dr. Ricky Jones was like a big brother, a very tough and fun professor. He would put us out of class for not reading! He helped sharpen my analytical skills. I first met Marian Vasser when she managed the Louisville Ladies Hostesses for the football program. She's been a solid advisor on professional development and life in general.
Doing work: I am a community organizer who's been trained as an urban planner (MA, University of Michigan, '07). When people ask, "What do you do?" my usual reply is "I work toward the liberation of Black people." I do work with a focus on wealth creation using cooperative economics, voter engagement, and civic responsibility. I cofounded Louisville Association for Community Economics (LACE) to work towards opening a community-owned grocery store to serve neighborhoods with limited access to food. LACE has spent four years organizing an intergenerational, multi-racial, mixed income group of leaders who are creating pathways to community wealth creation through cooperative economics.
Advice for students: Join something and be engaged on campus — even if you don't live there. USE THE WRITING CENTER! Visit your professors at least once. Send thank you notes. Visit the archives and talk to the librarians — coolest folks on campus! Be nice to the keepers of the campus and those who serve you. Say thank you and hold the door.