Who We Are
"We are the change we want to see in our community"
- The Black Neighborhood
The Black Neighborhood is an organization created from the hearts, minds, and experiences of six Black men native to Richmond and Oakland, California. We were heavily inspired by our mothers, our communities, and the Black Panthers and decided we must be the change we want to see. We are each individuals and leaders in our own right, but understand that together we are a strong unit with high hopes of inspiring today's youth and presenting our communities with options and positivity. We are well aware of the challenges the Black community continues to face, and are very optimistic that change will come. The Black Neighborhood focuses on the Black community while understanding that one community is never in isolation without others; therefore we invite the larger Bay Area community and that of the world to immerse its talents, beliefs, and time into the future of our nation. We focus on community outreach via monthly food giveaways, speaking engagements, free gatherings such as BBQ's, and community exposure via movie screenings, special events, and all-around fun.
Bryce Savoy is a rapper and activist from Oakland, CA. In May of 2015, he graduated from Howard University in Washington, D.C., where he received a Bachelor's Degree in Legal Communications and a minor in Spanish.
Growing up in East Oakland was an experience must do not live to tell. Bryce understood at a very young age that in order to avoid the dangers and negativity that plagued his community, he had to become a leader. Crime, drugs, and poverty became a regular occurrence, however with the help of positive outlets like education, sports, and music, he found a way to stay focused.
Through his time studying abroad in Barcelona, Spain, as well as interacting with people from all walks of life, Bryce brings to The Black Neighborhood cultural awareness and a sense of understanding that is unparalleled. With these skills, he aims to empower and uplift his people in all areas of their lives, encouraging them to reach their full potential.
He currently works as a Legal Assistant at Stanley Law, A.P.C, a civil law firm that specializes in civil litigation, business law, construction law, and landlord/tenant law. Whenever he is not in the office, Bryce spends time perfecting his music and finding new ways to ensure his voice is heard.
Check out his music here
Royce Hughes is a 27-year old leader from Richmond, CA. He attended Contra Costa College from 2007-2009, where he played at Quarterback for the college's football program. After years of superb play, Royce earned a Division-3 football scholarship to Faulkner University in Montgomery, Alabama.
After spending a couple years at Faulkner, he decided to return to the Bay Area to be closer to his family and friends. Upon returning, him and a group of friends created RCTHURSDAY, a collective whose aim was to provide safe, affordable house parties on Thursday nights. Royce served as the organization's Event Coordinator.
Royce is currently working for KIPP Bridge in West Oakland as an Instructional Aid and also works for the City Of Berkeley as a recreational leader.
Kimani Elliott is a dynamic young man whose charm and charisma captivates everyone around him. Community and family oriented, Kimani's involvement in The Black Neighborhood came all too naturally. He credits his mother and grandparents for his universal knowledge and consciousness as he recognizes the power of his benevolence.
Kimani's advocacy of cultural pride and self-love was enhanced when he left his hometown, Richmond, CA, to attend Howard University in Washington, DC. While at Howard, Kimani experienced a community that was fueled by love and heavily promoted black excellence. This gave him a sense of purpose, so he decided to move back to the Bay Area to help restore his community.
Aside from his philanthropic involvement with The Black Neighborhood, Kimani Elliott works as a first grade teacher at KIPP Bridge Academy. He strongly believes that with self-love, tenacity, and dedication, we can come together and create sustainable communities that foster peace and positivity.
Oakland native, Uzo Nwadugbo, describes himself as a community activist. Born and raised in the inner city of East Oakland, CA, the 24-year-old became apparent of the risks and disadvantages flooding his community at an early age. Eager to be a source of a change within his community, he went on to pursue a Bachelor of Arts in Communication, graduating from San Jose State in the Spring of 2015.
Through his life experiences coupled with the knowledge obtained as a Communication major, Uzo brings cultural competency and authenticity through his community outreach with The Black Neighborhood, which further allows him to form genuine connections with the populations they serve.
Uzo currently works as an After School Educator at Elmhurst Community Preparatory Middle School in the heart of East Oakland, CA. Alongside the academic assistance he provides, he also serves as the Boys Basketball Coach as well as the Track & Field Coach.
Uzo aims to unify his community despite the makeup of its' citizens backgrounds whether it be economically, socially and/or culturally. Moreover, he wants to show in order to make change, we as a community have to be the ones to not only desire to see that change take place, but also take the initiative to make that change happen. All in all, it's up to us to demonstrate to America how much power a God-fearing African American male can have in society today despite his upbringing.
Ephraim “Dephkhan” Vives is a musician, painter, & photographer from Oakland, CA. Getting his start in Oakland, he & his family moved around the Bay Area quite a few times until he graduated from Foothill High School in Pleasanton, CA. After moving back to his hometown, he began to further explore his artistic career.
Being blessed with opportunities to witness different cultures and people, along with his ability to artistically interpret the things around him, Ephraim provides The Black Neighborhood vision, passion, perspective, and the desire to see true change for his people as a whole.
Currently working with artists around the Bay Area in musical & visuals contexts, Ephraim is building his craft further in order to attain success for change within himself & the world around him. Aiming to be the best producer & painter he can be, as well as collaborating with those around him to build a bigger source of community is one of his biggest goals.
Cory Elliott is a man on a path of his own. Raised in Richmond, California under a strong and focused household, he understood the importance of individuality and leadership. As a student at Drew School, his development and global mindset were recognized and cultivated. While attending Morehouse College he was exposed to the power, discipline, and change created and sustained amongst Black men and women together accomplishing goals.
Transferring and graduating from Howard University propelled him and solidified his independence, love for travel and everything black. Post graduation, he worked as an elementary school teacher in Brooklyn, New York while attending a Masters in Teaching program.
He currently works at KIPP Bridge Academy as a 5th grade English teacher. He firmly believes in the power of respecting, supporting, and teaching Black women and men in an effort to spread as much love and community as possible.