Poet, producer, activist, educator, and entrepreneur Sierra Leone captivates audiences with her unassuming ingenuity, profound insight, and comedic sense of "knowing."
Through her poetry and onstage productions, Sierra Leone aims to always connect the dots, embed a sense of history, and inspire her audience to come alive. Often called a “Healing Producer” and the “Artist Impresario of Urban Creative Arts,” Sierra Leone is known for using her unique hybrid style and inclusive collaborations to design authentic works. That impacts the students and the greater community. Over the years, she has become known as a regional Master Collaborator. For Breaking Silences, Sierra will call us in and for the first time share aspects of her journey with dyslexia.
Born Lucy Owens, Sierra Leone is a Master Collaborator and serves as the Artistic Director of Signature Educational Solutions, a leading, independent, urban educational organization focused on the creative arts and located in downtown Dayton, Ohio. As the co-founder of the company’s umbrella organization, OFP Productions, she is the artistic designer and producer of the Off-Broadway, Theatrical Revue The Signature: A Poetic Medley Show, a quarterly urban creative arts production housed at The Loft Theatre. In 2012, Sierra Leone was recognized as Dayton’s “Creative Arts Producer of the Year” by Jo Magazine.
As a College of Liberal Arts (COLA) Distinguished alumnae of Wright State University who graduated in the top 1% of her class, Sierra Leone understands firsthand the powerful impact that outreach and student services programs can have on youth, and she has steered her organizations’ community collaborations accordingly. As a community liaison, partnering with local schools and universities to provide creative arts, youth mentoring and community support, she has produced and co-created The Regional Academic Cultural Collaborative (RACC), which was a merger of creative arts, education, and the business of entertainment. She has also created the in-school poetry performance program, “Art of Word,” co-produced with The Muse Machine, and produced The Rhine McLin Mayor’s Teen Talent Show. In 2014, in partnership with internationally renowned artist Willis Bing Davis, Sierra Leone created and presented “Words from the Rooftop,” a tribute to Dr. Maya Angelou. Also, in 2014 she received the Wright State University Multicultural Center’s MLK Distinguished Service Award.
In addition to the above, Sierra Leone is a published poet who was featured twice in 2005 in Essence Magazine. She has shared the stage with legendary poets such as, Sonia Sanchez, Nikki Giovanni, Amiri Baraka, and Gwendolyn Mitchell, as well as with Malcolm-Jamal Warner and numerous HBO Def Poets. Several years ago Leone wrote a fictional monolog entitled “Katrina 2031 that she featured at TEDx Dayton 2014. Currently, she is working on a short story series for children that will be published in the fall of 2016. Recently, she launched I AM Moon Power a community for women and girls to embrace self-actualized empowerment!
Daily she serves the greater community as a Master Collaborator in her position as the Artistic Director of Signature Educational Solutions.