Executive Director

Robyne Walker Murphy

Robyne Walker Murphy is a nationally-recognized art and social justice educator and administrator. Prior to joining Groundswell's team in November 2016, Robyne most recently served as Citywide Program Director for Cultural Access at Cool Culture in New York City. Previous to her position at Cool Culture, Robyne served as director of membership development and engagement at the National Guild for Community Arts Education, working closely with a national network of community arts organizations. Robyne created the Guild's first network for leaders of color in the arts, ALAANA (African, Latin, Asian, Arabic, Native American) to raise the profile of work being led by people of color (POC) in the arts, increase POC access to sustained resources, and invest in the growth and leadership of people of color in the field of community arts education. 
Prior to the Guild, she served as the Director of the DreamYard Art Center for seven years. During that time she helped lead the organization through the development of arts and social justice programming and community engagement initiatives at the DreamYard Art Center, located in the Morrisania section of the Bronx. Robyne oversaw the expansion of program offerings from three programs serving high school students to 16 programs multi-discipliinary art and college readiness programs for young people in grades PreK-12. Under her direction, DreamYard Art Center was recognized by the White House as one of the top 12 out of school programs in the nation. Robyne accepted the award from First Lady Michelle Obama at a White House ceremony. She created and co developed the Social Justice Pedagogy Team, a professional development series aimed at establishing important tenets of social justice education; creating common language across programs; exploring best practices and learning from veteran social justice educators. Robyne has conducted workshops about art and social justice at conferences and institutions across the country. Her writing on social justice education has been featured in Teachers and Writers and Teaching Artist Guild magazines. 
Robyne is a graduate of Clark Atlanta University where she majored in English with an emphasis in African American Literature. She obtained her MFA in Acting from the University of Washington’s Professional Actor Training Program. She resides in Brooklyn, New York with her husband, Tarik Murphy and her son, Ras.

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