SheaMoisture Lends Social Media Platforms to Amplify MPJI

Columbus, Ohio — Continuing its commitment to lifting voices and advocating for the Black transgender community, the Marsha P. Johnson Institute (MPJI) today announced several activities to commemorate Pride month, including a groundbreaking collaboration with a major beauty and personal care brand. 


SheaMoisture, the global beauty leader, is lending its social media platform to MPJI throughout the month of June to connect Black beauty to the work of defending and protecting the human rights of Black transgender people. 


Throughout the campaign, the brand will share powerful stories relevant to the journeys of Black transgender people, grouped by themes of Reclamation and Resistance, Resources and Protection, Self Love, Collaborative Solidarity, and MPJI’s story. The collaboration marks the first time SheaMoisture has used its social platforms for the LGBTQ+ community. 


“At SheaMoisture we celebrate and strive to enrich the lives of Black people all over the world,” said Cara Sabin, CEO of SheaMoisture. “We are a company that is Black-led, with Black people in the highest levels of leadership throughout the company. Moreover, we represent the full spectrum of the Black experience; we are LGBTQ+, women, men, immigrants, foreign nationals, and human beings who unapologetically support the human rights of all LGBTQ+ individuals.”


“This month, we hope to educate and enlighten, but also do our due diligence in uplifting Black voices from different walks of life united in their shared experiences and commonalities, as we reclaim Black beauty, reframe our stories and redefine our futures, together,” Sabin added. “We are honored to celebrate Marsha’s legacy, and support Black trans lives by uplifting their stories: Stories of pride, joy, celebration, and reclamation.”


“We are honored to be chosen by SheaMoisture to be elevated through their social platforms. By collaborating with us, SheaMoisture is increasing the opportunities for Black transgender people to be supported, the challenges we face to be heard, and the beauty of our lived experiences shared with dignity,” said MPJI Founder and Executive Director Elle Moxley. “Additionally, SheaMoisture is affirming its stance on important cultural issues, something customers increasingly value in the brands they choose.”


In addition to the SheaMoisture collaboration, MPJI will host four online discussions to further the visibility of Black trans experiences and the urgent need for policy changes and life-saving resources. MPJI will also continue its Black Pride Fridays discussions, as it did in 2020, with Moxley having conversations with Black trans leaders who yield their voice to empower and guide the movement closer to the goal of liberation. Additional details and registration information can be found at


We Deserve: Funding Black Trans Joy 

Thursday, June 10, 7-8:30 p.m. ET

Moderator: Covid-19 Recovery Manager, Phoebe VanCleefe

What does Black trans joy look like, across communities and spectrums? What is inherent and where are the lines of designation? This conversation will center on the topics of funding Black trans joy, by highlighting the voices of mutual aid mobilizers and their mission. 


      • Dionne Obadiah (he/him/brother), Spiritual Healer, Founder Finding Freedomland
      • Sunny Marks (they/them), Disability Rights Advocate, Co-Organizer, PowerFru Housing Crew
      • Jordyn Jay (she/her), Founder, Black Trans Femmes In The Arts

Black Pride Fridays with Imara Jones 

Friday, June 11, 2:30-3:30 p.m. ET

Imara Jones is an award-winning journalist, and the creator of TransLash Media, cross-platform journalism, personal storytelling, and narrative project, which produces content to shift the current culture of hostility towards transgender people in the US. Moxley and Jones will engage in a discussion that touches on trans-antagonism, systemic violence, and the importance of Black trans storytellers.

Black Pride Fridays: Commemoration on Instagram for MPJI’s 2nd Anniversary & Juneteenth Celebration
Friday, June 18, 7-10 p.m. ET

MPJI will celebrate its second anniversary, with a digital music set curated by DJ TGIF. The event will also honor Juneteenth, as MPJI will be closed for the day to reflect, rest, and dance. 

Black Pride Fridays with Valerie Spencer
Friday, June 25, 7-8 p.m. ET

Valerie Spencer is a therapist, ordained minister, and activist of nearly 30 years. She mentors younger Black trans women in life development, spiritual guidance, and helping them to attain previously unthinkable aspirations. Her discussion with Moxley will center around the legacy of Black transgender leadership in shaping the national narrative on community issues and will enable attendees to listen and learn directly from Ms. Spencer’s expertise and experiences.


MPJI protects and defends the human rights of Black transgender people. Until her tragic death in 1992, Marsha P. Johnson was a self-identified drag queen, performer, and survivor, in addition to being a prominent figure in the Stonewall Uprising of 1969. Marsha went by “Black Marsha” before settling on Marsha P. Johnson. The “P” stood for “Pay It No Mind,” which is what Marsha would say in response to questions about her gender. It is the consideration of who “Black Marsha” was that inspired The Marsha P. Johnson Institute. 


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© Copyright 2019 Marsha P. Johnson Institute. All rights reserved. The Marsha P. Johnson Institute is a fiscally sponsored project of Social Good Fund, a California nonprofit corporation and registered 501(c)(3) organization, Tax ID (EIN) 46-1323531.


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