Good morning all,
We are continuing our celebration of Black History Month. Today we are highlighting the activism and life of the fabulous Andraea LaVant, “a cultural changemaker transforming the world for all”. She is the founder and president of LaVant Consulting, Inc., which specializes in helping brands “speak disability with confidence.” LaVant has over a decade of experience working on programs that support youth and adults with disabilities and other underserved populations. She calls herself the The Multi-Hyphenate Cultural Maven, which is a description that I love!
With her lived and professional experiences shaped by her identities at the intersections of race, gender, and disability, Andraéa LaVant expertly navigates and negotiates all corners of culture—from the fashion trends of the season to the latest federal policy mandates. She leads the hard conversations that should be happening today—and delivers “diplomatic shade” while she’s at it. With no apologies.
Andraea calls out the lack of visibility of non-white disabled people in the media and disability spaces overall. “Historically, and even until now, most of the narratives we hear or stories we see about disability are depicted from the experiences of white disabled people, particularly white disabled men. Yet, statistics prove that one in four Black adults are disabled, one in six Latinx adults are disabled, one in 10 Asian adults are disabled… the list goes on. This then reveals that the stories of disabled people of color are simply being ignored. This lack of visibility ultimately affects our self-worth and overall sense of belonging.”
Andraéa is passionate about cultivating community cultures that are inclusive of disabled people. She is the founder of LaVant Consulting, a company that shapes the way the world reaches, views and values disabled people. In her role as an inclusion specialist, Andraéa works on programs that support youth and adults with disabilities and other underserved populations, including black, indigenous and people of color (BIPOC).
“I am inspired by my peers within our community that continue to fight daily to ensure disabled BIPOC folks are at the center of every movement and conversation,” Andraéa said.
Andraéa’s work has been featured on Good Morning America, NBC, Essence.com, the Root, Paper Magazine, and a host of other national media. In 2021, she became the first visibly disabled black woman to appear on the Oscars Red Carpet. Given her marginalized identities, Andraéa champions intersectionality and is committed to working toward a future where ALL people, particularly disabled people of color, are seen and valued in culture and society at-large. She recently appeared on the red carpet of the Grammy Awards.
Learn more about the work of Andraea Lavant (and see more of her trend setting fashion looks).
Have a great week all!