Ditra has centered her life's work on the intention of working with communities of color to fight for justice. A skilled trainer, facilitator, community organizer, fundraisers and strategists, Ditra brings a high level integrity and effectiveness to all of her work.
Over the last year Ditra has served as a consultant in partnership with the Hill Snowdon Foundation, The Center for Applied Research and Technical Assistance, Inc. (CARTA), The Funders Collabrative on Youth Organizing (FCYO) and The Praxis Project. As a consultant, Ditra brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in the areas of organizational and leadership development, community strategy and relationship building.
From 1999 to 2005, Ditra Edwards was on the staff of LISTEN, Inc., serving as Executive Director from 2002 to 2005. Under Ditra's leadership the organization grew tremendously. The organization secured and managed the National Roots Initiative for two years in partnership with the Funders Collaborative on Youth Organizing. Ditra also won multi-year funding to secure the infrastructure of LISTEN and core support for the grass roots organizations supported by the organization.
As director of Training and Youth Development at LISTEN, Ditra was responsible for the design and implementation of the Global Exchange Program which supported the youth activist from the United States and their counterparts in other countries to learn about leadership and democracy. Ditra was also the catalyst for the content and framework of the organization's leadership and youth development curriculum. At LISTEN, Ditra also helped incubate Youth Education Alliance (YEA), a DC based youth organizing group fighting for equality education in DC Public Schools. YEA has recently transitioned into and independence organization. Finally, during her tenure at LISTEN, Ditra help to co-create the national network of youth workers and organizers called Building Leadership Organizing Communities (BLOC).
Prior to LISTEN, Ditra served as Senior Program Director for Community Programs at the YMCA of Greater Boston. During her tenure at the YMCA, she helped to found and direct the nationally recognized Youth Workers Alliance of Boston. In addition, she was responsible for the vision and direction of the Greater Boston YMCA Youth development Center. As a facilitator for the Academy of Educational Development's (AED) National Youth Workers Training Institute, Ditra is certified to deliver professional development for youth workers in all areas and disciplines.
Ditra has severed on the board of the Funders Collaborative on Youth Organizing, and presently serves on the Columbia Heights Shaw family Support Collaborative and Emory Beacon of Light Community Development Corporation board of directors. Ditra was the recipient of the Salzburg Seminar Fellowship, Session 366 on Urban Youth and the Smithsonian Institute, Museum Leadership Award