Ebonie Davis, Board President,
joined the board in June 2011. In February of 2013, she began working as a Trainer professionally certified in Instruction/Facilitation by Langevin Learning Services (the world’s largest train-the-trainer company) with the State of Illinois Department of Human Rights’ Institute for Training and Development; since that time, she has not only trained numerous individuals on various EEO/non-discrimination training, but developed training material on the subjects of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity: ‘LGBTQI & U: Out and Equal in the Workplace. Prior to working for the Department’s Training Institute, Ebonie cumulatively served approximately a decade as a Human Rights Investigator I & II with the Department; protecting the rights of residents of Illinois from discrimination in the workplace and the community, in accordance with the Illinois Human Rights Act and a Human Service Caseworker with the State of Illinois Department of Human Services.
Ebonie has more than a decade of experience in the non-profit sector, securing funding, assisting with grassroots projects, lobbying, attacking social justice issues, advocacy, and legislation. Ebonie also has an extensive history working with diverse youth; from males in the criminal justice system to youth with multiple disabilities. Ebonie received her Bachelor of Social Work degree with Honors in Social Work. Ebonie is a member of Phi Theta Kappa, Psi Beta, and Phi Alpha Honor Societies. Ebonie has a true passion for helping others overcome barriers to success – whether those barriers are created by discrimination or socio-economic factors. Email: Ebonie.davis@
LaToya Bailey, Board Member,
In 2014, LaToya became a board member of Affinity Community Services in 2014- she wanted to serve and connect with her community on a deeper level. She feels that it is important to give back what was once received. LaToya bring many years of experience in working with nonprofits through planning and organizing events, marketing and promoting events, setting long term goals and visions for the improvement of the organization, fundraising, and presenting ideas.
LaToya is first and foremost, an educator, an engineer, and an entrepreneur. She was born and raised on the southside of Chicago, and graduated from the University of Illinois-Chicago, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering. Currently she works as an Electrical Engineer with a manufacturing company in Romeoville and is responsible for control system design, control panel engineering, PLC and HMI programming, and site start-up support of integrated packaging equipment for the consumer products industry. LaToya had also joined the E3Radio team as the Technical Expert of all the radio communication and technology needs and provides technical support of the issues reported.
LaToya believes that its important our community stay relevant in the technology/STEM space. She would like to create a safe space for queer black woman in tech to come together to network and share ideas. She loves to travel, dance, and play sports. She believes in uplifting people and in self-help.
Anna DeShawn, Secretary,
30, is a Chicago-born social entrepreneur. Anna graduated from Drake University in 2005 with a degree in radio/television production. She went on to study corporate communications at Ithaca College and graduated with her masters in 2007. Media has always been Anna’s passion so she turned her passion into a reality when she founded E3 Radio, LLC. E3 Radio is an online radio network that produces authentically-edgy media to affect real change. Anna and the QCREW host a weekly show for Queer People of Color (QPOC) around the country every Thursday at 9pm CT. Past Guests include Affinity Community Services, C.C. Carter, Coquie Hughes, Hanifah Walidah, Lez Elegance Magazine, KIN4LIFE, Mary Morton and many others. In addition, Anna also produces two additional shows on the E3 network; Conversations with Angie Harvey, which challenges listeners to GROW up and live their best lives, and Phenomenal Soul Sessions, hosted by Phenomenon the Poet, Comedian Sampson, and produced by HBO Def Poet Entertainer ButtaFlySoul. This combination of spoken word and comedy features the best spoken word poets from around the country while keeping you in stitches. Anna DeShawn is determined to ride media into its next era by utilizing online radio streams to tell the stories that need to be heard.
Malissa Rainey, Board Member,
works as a Team Leader in the Housing Department of the largest Mental Health agency in the state of Illinois. Prior to joining her current employer, Malissa worked as a Team Leader administering the Housing Choice Voucher program in the City of Chicago. Before starting a career in Property Management, Malissa worked as a Community Organizer and Leadership Trainer in the Chicago land area. Malissa is passionate about people and enjoys working in public service. Malissa graduated from Chicago State University and majored in Political Science. She is also the recipient of the Nancy Jefferson’s Community Leadership award, Elena Friedman inspiration award and a former Employee of the year for CHAC.
Jasmine “Jas” Thurmond, Board Member,
a member of the board since November 2014, is a native Chicagoan. J as graduated from Concordia University in 2014 with a M.A. in Educational Leadership, and she is pursuing a M.A. at Chicago State University in English Language and Literature. Jas is passionate about social justice, especially within education. She believes that all children are entitled to and should receive an academically rigorous and culturally relevant education that will effectively prepare them for college or a career. Because of this passion, Jas continues to serve as an English/Reading Instructor, as well as in various other Educational Leadership roles.
Jas has facilitated and participated in a myriad of activities in Chicago’s LGBT community, including co-hosting G-Spot Radio Show, a weekly live talk radio show, where she interviewed guests such as Leela James, Marwan, Dr. Jackie Anderson, Natalie “The Floacist” Stewart, Laurinda D. Brown, and others. Jas was a founding board member of Chicago State University’s first Gay-Straight Alliance, Helping Others Regarding Orientation (H.E.R.O.); in addition, she received The Windy City Times’ 30 under 30 Award in 2008. Jas has worked with other non-profit organizations, as well, such as the K.L.E.O. Center, International Federation of Black Prides, and Betty Shabazz International Charter Schools to write and secure private, state, and federal grants. She looks forward to using her position on Affinity’s Board of Directors to affect change and provide assistance to all.