The People

Ditra Edwards is the Co-founder and Director for SISTA FIRE. She is an African American woman born and raised in Providence, Rhode Island, with over 20 years of experience working on racial and economic justice issues. Throughout her career, she has carried the thread (and accent!) of her upbringing in Rhode Island and has woven it with lessons she learned everywhere from Boston to Washington, DC and beyond. The theme that runs through all of her work is making connections between people, their values and vision, and the change they want to bring about.  Because of this, she believes in a people-centered approach to changing structural conditions and building community power.

In 2015, Ditra’s heart brought her back to Rhode Island to be closer to her family. In 2017, she won the Rhode Island Foundation Innovation Fellowship to start SISTA FIRE.

Before returning to RI full time, Ditra served as the Director of Strategic Partnerships and Program Director for The Praxis Project, a Washington DC-based nonprofit organization helping communities use media and policy advocacy to advance health justice. During her tenure, Ditra led fundraising efforts, strategy development, and design and implementation of special initiatives. In addition to her work with SISTA FIRE RI, Ditra provides support to grassroots organizations, alliances, and movement support organizations through strategy development, capacity building, training and technical assistance.

Chanravy Proeung is the Co-founder and Political Director for SISTA FIRE.. She is a Khmer American activist with 8 years of experience in campaign based organizing, expanding racial justice in Asian American communities, criminal justice and immigration work. Raised in Providence, Rhode Island, where she helped build out local and statewide campaigns against racial profiling of youth. She has played an integral role in efforts nationally to ensure that the Southeast Asian community is included in the larger struggle for social justice in this country. In 2016, she became a Soros Justice Fellow, where she coordinated the radical grassroots movement building collective the Southeast Asian Freedom Network (SEAFN), and worked in partnership with 1Love Movement (Philadelphia, PA).

In the past, she served on the coordinating committee of the Grassroots Asian Pacific Islander Rising Network for Racial Justice. A former executive director to the Providence Youth Student Movement (PrYSM). Proeung, who has worked in solidarity with groups domestically and internationally around human rights violations, has twice testified and organized Southeast Asian community members at the United Nations in Geneva about how racial profiling, police brutality, mass incarceration, and mass deportation impact the Southeast Asian communities.

She spends most her time being a mother, eldest sister, daydreaming and reading about social movements. Chanravy is dedicated to serving the community, uplifting stories of those whom are most impacted by oppressive systems, and healing as a pathway to movement building.


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