In the summer of 2019, community advocate Ashley Kay Smith produced a list of local Black businesses and shared the resource with the community in a post on social media. As protests in support of Black lives spread across our nation – the list exploded.
Wanting to help, Maïmouna volunteered to use her planning and organizing skills to help manage it. She connected with Avianca and they began to discuss how a website might be a good way to make the list even more accessible. Full of creative energy, Avianca began to envision branding and additional ways a website could support the community. They reached out to Carissa, to enlist her graphic and web design talents and Black Snohomish County was born!
We’ve had so much fun constructing this neighborhood for you, we hope you’ll continue to help us build it!
Our goal is to connect all residents of Snohomish County to local Black leaders, entrepreneurs, and creatives. We want to:
There are so many Black folks innovating, organizing, and sharing their diverse talents in our own backyard. We hope Black Snohomish County will connect like-minded folks together to uplift our entire community.
Maïmouna grew up in Dakar, Senegal, where she was not identified by the color of her skin but who her mother and father were. This completely changed when she came to the U.S. at the age of 17 to attend college and was confronted with what it means to be Black in the United States.
Maïmouna earned her Master’s in Business Administration from Colorado Technical University. A resident of Snohomish County since 2012, she is extremely passionate about serving her kids, her friends, her students, and her community and is thankful to her father for laying the family foundation she stands upon.
Maïmouna brings her people skills and connections to Black SnoCo where she champions others to achieve their dreams. In her off time, you can find Maïmouna dancing to Afrobeats in her kitchen with her boys, while serving up a big plate of Yassa or Thiebou Yapp to friends and family.
Avianca grew up in Marysville, Washington where she has spent most of her life being the only black face in the room. Motivated to unpack this experience, she attended Western Washington University, where she obtained a Bachelor of Arts Degree in American Cultural Studies in 2007.
Always a dreamer, and collaborator, Avianca spent her post-college years cofounding non-profit, designing costumes for an all-Black-theater company in South Seattle, and honing her artistic eye.
Avianca loves getting to know people and helping them create a visual aesthetic that truly represents them, and she brings those skills with her to the Black SnoCo team. Avianca adores her supportive husband, and their dog Grover, and spends much of her spare time imagining what it would be like for them to travel the world collecting textiles while living in a camper van.
Carissa was born and raised in Snohomish County where she was very disconnected from the Black community but gained some experiences through her older sister Avianca.
Carissa received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Theology from Seattle Pacific University in 2007. A self-trained graphic designer and illustrator, Carissa added to her skill set by obtaining a Certificate in Web Development from the Corporate and Continuing Education Center of Everett.
A talented artist, Carissa is the creator of the Black Snohomish County website and logo. As a quiet innovator, she loves working behind the scenes and looks forward to the community Black SnoCo will bring. Carissa loves sleeping, podcasts, and cats, and especially combining all three.
Have questions or ideas to help grow our neighborhood? Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out the form to send us a message.