Erika L Ewing is an actor, artist, educator, and activist—a true "Edu-ARTIVIST" she has a gift and passion for empowering communities to believe in the power of the arts to heal, unite, and be a catalyst for social change and transformation.
Erika has a BA in Theatre from Smith College and an MFA in Acting from Rutgers University, Mason Gross School of the Arts. She has also been an adjunct Professor for The City University of New York's Grad Center teaching, Literacy, Drama, and Dramatic Writing, and Guest Lecturer at NYU. Her career has encompassed directing, writing, acting, and producing and performing for television, film, radio, and music videos.
Since 1999, Erika combined her love for education, the arts, and social justice and began working as an Actor-Teacher for the Creative Arts Team. Erika accelerated within the organization and served in various leadership positions. Her pedagogical approach to professional development, instruction, learning, motivation, and engagement made her a rare and revolutionary talent.
After sixteen years of experience working, volunteering, and living in an under-served community, she found herself grieving the human condition and the systems that perpetuate and reinforce bias, racism, poverty, and discrimination. Erika naturally evolved into a social media activist, having formed over nine groups on social media to evoke change and awake critical consciousness.
By 2015, Erika felt it was time to put boots on the ground and start fighting openly against injustice and join the ranks as an NYC Activist. In January 2015, she was appointed Chief of Staff of Black Lives Matter of Greater NYC (BLMNY) and organized their first MLK Youth March across NYC five boroughs. Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. set an example for the youth to lead. She designed and facilitated workshops to get the youth more civically engaged, and helped organize youth-led voter education drives across the city.
After researching endless stories about the 64,000 missing Black girls in the United States, the women of BLMNY spearheaded the "Find Our Girls March" to raise awareness about the dangers of sex-trafficking, human-trafficking, and commercial sexual exploitation of children. Erika was eager to learn more and ramp up her advocacy against Sex-Trafficking. She attended many workshops and training and completed a 21-hour course in Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children (CSEC). Along with advocacy, Erika supports individual survivors and their families in helping them find services that meet their needs and support their healing process.
In June 2017, Erika left BLMNY. Erika gained new insights and had a new set of questions specifically about the long-lasting impacts of systemic injustice and how unhealed trauma paralyzes vulnerable communities. Committed to addressing the needs of marginalized and silenced populations, she united a powerful consortium of advisors and experts from diverse fields who were willing to support the vision for Got To Stop.
By spring 2018, Got To Stop launched, and Erika, the EDUCATOR, gained the attention of advocates across the globe. Soon she was invited to by an international humanitarian organization UNITAS United To Fight Against Human Trafficking to join their prevention curriculum team.
In March 2019, Erika L. Ewing, the ACTOR was invited to perform an original monologue she wrote about impacts of emotional abuse and journey to self-love at the Women of the World Festival (WOW) at the world-famous Apollo Theater in Harlem.
In observance of April National Sexual Assault and Child Abuse, Awareness Month Got To Stop partnered with the National Pan-Hellenic Council of NYC. We offered free community workshops facilitated by Kim Dennis Walker from the NYS Office of Children Services. Community-based organizations and political leaders participated in our Anti-Human Trafficking Rally, Youth Poster Party, and Got To Stop Trafficking Walk.
For the past three years, Erika has been busy working and has gained notable recognition for Social Impact Fashion and her Anti-Human Trafficking Campaign.
Erika is radical about social change for the greater good, "by any means and artistic medium necessary."
This May, we send you a virtual blue iris bouquet to thank you for your courage and sacrifices. The blue iris flower symbolizes faith and hope. The world sees you standing on the front lines. We grieve in solidarity with your cries for irrevocable and sustainable change.
Take consolation in knowing your labor is not vain. Support the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act!