Daytonian of the Week: Furaha Henry-Jones

Furaha Henry-Jones is a poet and Professor of English with Sinclair Community College, where she's been since 2005. She was a speaker at TEDxDayton in 2013, and you can see her talk “Shea Butter Epiphanies” below.

How would you label yourself?
I'm an odd mix of outgoing and introvert who likes to listen to people's stories.

Where do you live?
In Centerville, but when I first came to Dayton I lived in Kettering.

What superpower would you love to have?
Mind reader—with the ability to turn it on or off at will. I wouldn't want to hear something that I'm not supposed to hear.

What inspires you about life in Dayton?
Dayton is this unique blend of diversity, seeking innovation, moving in the right direction without forgetting what is good.

What was one of your greatest challenges?
Being a parent and raising a son. I knew what to expect as a girl myself, a boy is completely different thing.

How did you push through the challenge?
With the help of family, community, my parents and close friends.

February is Black History Month. How do you think black Daytonians have contributed to this conversation?
Paul Lawrence Dunbar's journalistic writings and politics were on the forefront of civil rights and activism for blacks. Family is important to legacy; black history is part of all history and is happening every day.

How does race impact your life in Dayton?
How does race not impact my life?

Have you or do you face any obstacles because you are black?
I believe a lot of black people face obstacles, but I don't let them stop me.

What do you do to have fun?
I DANCE! I will dance anywhere, anytime.

What do you want others to know about Dayton?
Dayton is way cooler than what people give it credit for.

Know someone who should be our Daytonian of the Week? Drop us a line: