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Reframing Narratives of Enslaver Research with Adrienne Fikes

  • Broadcast in History



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Difficult truths about slavery, racial injustice, and other harm, bring up a variety of emotions and challenges for genealogy researchers and families. Adrienne Fikes wants us to reframe the narrative about the descendants of enslaved persons and enslavers gathering together to heal. This shift in perspective allows us to stand firm in our deepest truth; have consistent access to unspeakable joy; and develop the deep roots and bubble wrap we need to stay in this principled struggle to understand each other, while addressing the structural issues continuing these wrongs.

How many of your 16 great-great-grandparents can you call by name? After a random tweet led her to information about her roots, Adrienne Fikes M.Ed, PCC (she/her) created the #16Greats Challenge, encouraging other GenXers and younger to learn the names of their 16 great-great-grandparents, or understand why they can’t. Adrienne is a seventh-generation Virginian, with deep roots in North Carolina, and is part of the 1st generation to grow up in the planned community of Columbia, Maryland.

Adrienne is the Soul Power Coach™ of, an executive coach and consultant, TEDx speaker, and author of Finding Your #UnspeakableJoy: Right There Where You Are. Adrienne has a M.Ed in Human Growth and Development, BS in Psychology, and is a NCBH Adult Mental Health First Aid Responder. She serves on the International Coaching Federation Metro DC Board, launching it's Racial Justice Community of Practice. Adrienne has been deeply involved in advocating for restorative justice within Alexandria's Equal Justice Initiative Community Remembrance Project, and is the co-founder of Racial Justice Alexandria.  Adrienne is a member of the James Dent Walker DC Chapter of AAHGS.