amaha sellessie

Position title: Board President

Website: Gem City Market

photo of amaha sellessie

amaha sellassie is a afrofuturist, peace builder, social healer, freedom fighter, network weaver, student of cooperation and lover of humanity.  amaha is a Nation Builder in the Africana Village under the Dayton Africana Elders Council.  He’s also an Associate Professor of Sociology and director of Center for Applied Social Issues at Sinclair Community College in Dayton Ohio.  amaha is a practitioner scholar and participatory action researcher dedicated towards building bridges of trust, healing historical wounds, and harnessing the unique gifts and talents of every human being as we press towards a just and equitable society. He truly understands the power of local work to transform global experiences by birthing examples of what is possible. Locally, as the former chair of the Dayton Human Relations Council Board, his areas of interest include health and education equity, praxis, cooperative economic development, dismantling structural violence and getting the voice of marginalized communities into the center of public policy in order to emerge structures of belonging that acknowledge the dignity and worth of every human being. He is co-founder and board chair of the Gem City Market, a community driven effort to address food apartheid through a food coop dedicated to increasing access to fresh fruits and vegetables within west Dayton. He is also a co-founder and co-ed of CO-OP Dayton a coop incubator that is guided by the Mondragon model towards building a Just Economy Ecosystem.  amaha’s work in the community supported him receiving the J.M. Kaplan foundations national Innovation Prize fellowship to continue his work emerging a cooperative economy rooted in Love, interdependence and human dignity.  Internationally amaha is a Caux Scholar fellow trained in the Swiss Alps in peacebuilding and healing historical wounds.  He helped emerge Arada Tena Community Health Insurance Mahber (Coop) in Shashamane Ethiopia.  Currently he is working towards his Ph. D. in Sociology at the University of Cincinnati with an emphasis on utilizing community based participatory action research (CBPAR) towards emerging health equity, co-creating opportunity and community transformation.  To replenish his cup, you can often find him sitting by the water or building with his family or reading a book and deepening community at the HeArt Dayton.