Valeria Watson (aka) Yeye Siju Osunyemi
58 E. Wonder Road                                                         207 E. Coxe #4, Refinery 828-552-0740
Leicester, NC 28748                                                       Asheville 28001 [email protected]

Community Economic Development in the South theory and Practice: The Southeast US

Citizen Diplomacy, conflict resolution, indigenous economic development in cities and the rural south

EDUCATION
Formal
1972 Master of Arts - Theatre Design 1970 Bachelor of Arts - Fine Arts
Columbia University The College of Emporia
New York, New York Emporia, Kansas
Informal
2006 Initiation to Osun, HATTAF Intl., Osogbo Nigeria
2006 Playback Theatre Improv Immersion Weekend, Raphael Paul & Debra Scott
2005 Debra Brown Workshop, choreographer for Cirque du Soleil
2005 Animation –- Cochise Comm. Coll. Sierra Vista, Arizona
2001 Afro-Cuban Dance taught by Pupy Insua & Regla Miller
2000 Bachelor of Divinity Priestess of Oshun
Universal Brotherhood, Inc. Ile Tawo Lona, initiated by Baba Ifa Karade

Global African American Policy: My Foundations

Carnegie Tsinghua Center for Global Policy – Panelist – SAI Sister Cities Trilateral Initiatives – Asheville/Raleigh, NC; Osogbo, Nigeria, Xiangyang, China.

OPIC Expanding Horizons 2013 - Workshop - for small businesses entering international markets. Local and Federal resources, Political Risk insurance, OPIC Small and Medium Enterprise Finance, Support for renewable energy and clean technologies, getting started with OPIC.

African Urban Poverty Alleviation Program- Project Manager - A Sister Cities International Grant (Gates Found.), using grass roots input to place 29 borehole wells in seven communities in Osogbo, Nigeria. $100,000.

Sino African Initiative- Project Manager -A trilateral project between the US, Africa and China funded by Sister Cities International (Gates Found). The Project consisted of refurbishing Atelowo Primary Healthcare Clinic to WHO standards in Osogbo, Nigeria. Partners are Sister Cities Groups from Asheville and Raleigh, North Carolina, Osogbo, Nigeria and Xiangyang, China. $100,000

Asheville Sister Cities, Inc. Board – Initiated the Sister City relationship of Asheville, NC with Osogbo, Nigeria by first establishing an MOU with Wilmington, Delaware to share the Sister City.
Asheville/Osogbo Group.

Bancroft, O'Connor, Chilton & Lavelle – Investment Banker - A municipal investement banking firm working with cities, redevelopment agencies, counties states and special districts to finance major capital improvements.

NFL Properties – Creative Services – The merchandising and licensing arm of the National Football League. Maintains control of the brands of the league and its franchises and negotiates with vendors to create official NFL merchandise branding.

Zamani Refuge African Culture Center - Founder - A non-profit cultural and educational organization supporting African cultural values; documenting and sharing through free educational videos on youtube and cultural conferences, events and grassroots mentoring.

Cochise Community Foundation – Advisory Board – Takes advantage of cost-effective, centralized financial management, marketing and administrative resources to maximize the impact and results of donor gifts. Individuals, families and businesses make tax-deductible charitable gifts in the form of cash, real estate, marketable securities or other assets.

African American Cultural Awareness Association – President – Sierra Vista Celebrates African American Culture. Organized the Black History Month Celebration 2002.

Southwest Association of Buffalo Soldiers – Secretary – Preserving the history of the African American in the Southwest.

National Council of Jewish Women – Admin. Asst. - Social Justice organization focused on women, children and families and the elderly through community service, education and advocacy.

Volunteer in Community Development, Childhood Ed: Founder and Director, Clinton Street Free
School, and Discovery Room for Children, Binghamton, NY: Children's Pump House, New York, NY.

International Association of Nigerian Studies and Development-Theme Patriotism in the Face of Leadership Bottlenecks in Africa: Exploring Citizen initiated activities and their Institutionialization Prospects – Philadelphia, PA – Paper delivered on Cultural Bridges that Heal: Asheville, NC and Osogbo, Nigeria.

Performance:
2016 Ancestor Walk Butoh 2016
2014 Gadfly, Asheville Fringe Festival, Asheville, NC
2013 Black/White Les Butoh, Asheville Butoh Festival, Asheville, NC
Lareina, Dianna Wortham Theater, Asheville, NC
Black Church Lady performed corner of Eagle and Market Street, The Block, Asheville.
ReHappening – performed in Excursus
2011 Ghosts of the South, Butoh Promenade, Pink Dog Creative, Asheville, NC

Dance & Performance Workshops: Debra Brown, Cirque du Soleil; Pupy Insua, Afro-Cuban, Ayo Adeyemi, Yoruba drumming, Playback Theatre Improv Immersion Weekend

Fine Art Exhibitions:
2017 Perhaps She Has a Pink Vest, Installation the Refinery, Asheville, NV Valeria Watson Art
2016 Yahe Boda International Art Festival, Asheville, NC
2015 Reparations for Nina: The Nina Simone Project – Upstairs Artspace, Tryon, NC
2013 Family Land Grant, UNCA Multicultural Center, Asheville, NC
Whole Earth Theory – Highsmith Gallery, UNCA, Asheville, NC March voted best exhibit of 2013
2012 Wolf in Sheep's Clothing – Flood Gallery – Asheville, NC, Feb.
2011 Affrilachia! Where I'm From August Wilson Center, Pittsburgh, PA Nov. 18-March 17, 2012
2011 Cameron Museum of Art, Art of the State, State of the Art, Wilmington, NC
Leicester Artist Tour, Leicester, North Carolina
NiceNasty – new works – Pink Dog Creative, Asheville, NC – Oct. 8-Nov. 20
2010 Leicester Artist Tour, Leicester, North Carolina
1999 Speaking of Love”, Shakti gallery, Bisbee AZ

Art & Artists: worshop with Fashion designer Zandra Rhodes, Meeting with Sculptor El Anatsui, workshop with Natalie Chanin of Alabama Chanin, Barbara Matera Ltd. Broadway costume house. Nike Indigo workshop, Osogbo, Nigeria. Denver Model Cities Program, Theron Taylor photography.

Motion Picture Costumer's Local 705, I.A.T.S.E. - Costumer and Board Member representing Tailors.
Tombstone Western Film Festival
Bisbee Fiber Arts Festival
Naked and Sober I and II – River Arts District Studio Stroll – Socializing while Nude.

Independent Documentary Film:
Two Februaries- Making Black History Month Relevant
My Ifa Practice
Our Friends Nextdoor
Understanding Ifa: History, tradition and Ase; First Annual International Ifa Conference, 2003,Littleton, CO
Priestess of Osun:My Practice
2003 Griot Project: Dorothy McIver
The Souls of Black Folk, Black History Month 2003
Sierra Vista Celebrates African American Cultured 2002

Projects in Development
Pink Oshun Food CartTM – Nigerian Suya, Egg Rolls, Akara, Green Salad, Fruit Salad, sweet wine, juice bar
Pink Oshun Food Truck AshevilleTM
Pink Oshun Art and Gamertainment TM

Film and Television & Creative Employment History

1992 - 2005 Motion Picture Costumer’s Local 705 I.A.T.S.E.:
Posse - Set Costumer Damon - Tailor
A Mother’s Revenge - Set Costumer Life - Tailor
Blind Justice - Set Costumer Ally McBeal - Tailor
Knightrider 2010 - Set Costumer Action - Tailor
Buffalo Soldiers - Tailor/Set Costumer We Were Soldiers - Tailor
1994 -1996 Fashion Designer - Virgin Territory Organic Cotton Clothing
factory located in Phoenix, Arizona
Owner - Virtues Fine Earthly Goods – Organic Clothing & Products

1991 Shadow Hunter - Assistant Costume Designer
The Vagrant - Set Costumer/Tailor

1990 A Shayna Madel - Herberger Theatre - Costume Designer
The Immigrant - Herberger Theatre - Costume Designer
Beauty and the Beast - Little Theatre, Phx. - Costume Designer

1988 The Munsters Today - Arthur Co., L.A. - Costume Designer
The Colored Museum - Globe Theatre, San Diego - Costume Designer

1987 Instructor: Theatrical Costume - Fullerton College - Fullerton, CA
Costume Designer - El Camino College - Torrance, CA: Marat Sade - Designer

1984 - 1986 Bancroft, O’Connor, Chilton & Lavelle - Investment Banker

1973 Barbara Matera Ltd.; New York, NY – Broadway costume design workshop
Asst. Costume Designer

1973 - 1978 Tattoo Artist: Tattoo Art, Bingamton, NY & Scarabaeus Tattoos, Phoenix, AZ

INDEPENDENT DOCUMENTARY FILM Production
Priestess of Osun-My Practice – 94 min DVD on Yoruba Religious Practice
Priestess of Osun-My Nigerian Initiation
Capoeira Asheville – 58 minute documentary
Griot Project:Dorothy McIver – First Black Teacher in Sierra Vista, Arizona –video oral history
Two Februaries – 59:00 Making Black History Month Relevant
El Patio Detras – 28:00 bilingual documentary of an ESL school started by
Zamani Refuge and Sharing With Others
Understanding Ifa: the History the Tradition, the Ase – documentary of First Annual International Ifa Conference, 2003, Littleton, CO

Programs to Bridge the Racial Divide - URTV Channel 20 Asheville urtv.org
The Rehearsal - African American Band - Sat. 9:00 PM (11 episodes)
African Connections - Friday, 7:00 PM (13 episodes)
It's About You - Asheville Folks, - Wed. 9:00 PM (6 episodes)
Ringside Rosary – Indy film directed by Jack Eagen, Valeria Watson-Doost, Producer, Asheville 2011


Professional Volunteer Activities either personally or under the Auspices of Zamani Refuge African Culture Center
Board Member, I.A.T.S.E., Costumers Local 705 (2 years), Los Angeles, California
Board Member, Cochise Community Foundation, Sierra Vista, Arizona

2006-2016 Chair Osogbo Asheville Sister City Group, Asheville Sister Cities Board. Initiator of the Sister City relationship through Mayor Terry Bellamy. We completed two Gates foundation Grants in Osogbo, Nigeria. ($100,000.00 each)

2001 President, African American Cultural Awareness Association
Sierra Vista Celebrates African American Culture
organizer of the Black History Month Celebration 2002

2000 -2001 Southwest Association of Buffalo Soldiers - Secretary

1998 - Founder and Director of Zamani Refuge African Culture Center
2006 – Incorporated in Leicester, North Carolin, a 501(c)3 non-profit corp. 2000

1972 - 1976 Volunteer in Community Development & Childhood Education:
Founder and Director - Clinton Street Free School, Binghamton, NY
Discovery Room for Children, Binghamton, New York
Children’s Pump House, New York, NY

Theatre Awards
1992 Best Costume Designer – 3rd Annual ZONY Awards- AZ Film Theatre & TV & Valley Theatre Co.
1986 Outstanding Achievement Theatre Costume Design Julius Caesar – Hollywood Drama-Logue Award
1985 Best Costume Design – The Imaginary Invalid, Theater Palisades
1984 Best Costume Design – Much Ado about Nothing, Santa Monica
1975 - Best Tattooed Woman - First World Convention of Tattoo Artists & Fans

1969 - First, Miss Black Denver

ORGANIZATIONS: Asheville Sister Cities - URTV – Public Access, Asheville, NC - Media Arts Project

TRAVEL Mexico, Holland, England, Italy, Yugoslavia, Nigeria, Kenya, Morocco, Switzerland, France, Germany
 
 

 
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