Arts, Health, Education, and Spirituality
“I am an advocate for justice and believe that every race, age, and gender are necessary to advance society. Emotions and logic are both valid just as arts and science are equally important.”
A long-time advocate and partner in the field of community and economic development, Syda Segovia Taylor has close to 20 years of experience bringing opportunities to youth from Chicago’s under-served communities and prides herself of being a social justice advocate: promoting race unity, gender equality, oneness of humankind, health and food access, the arts, and harmony between science and religion. A former professional dancer and elementary physical education/health teacher, Ms. Taylor has devoted herself to improving the social, emotional, physical, mental, and spiritual health of young people.
Ms. Taylor has served as Director of Programs & Community Relations, at Project Explorations and the Education Program Officer for Local Initiatives Support Corporation. In her latter position, Ms. Taylor managed the nationwide Elev8 initiative in five Chicago Public Schools in addition to overseeing three New Communities Program neighborhoods: Greater Auburn-Gresham, Logan Square, and Albany Park. Prior to that she served as the Elev8 Director at Reavis Elementary for Quad Communities Development Corporation and implemented the $4 million plan with a multitude of community partners in Bronzeville.
Ms. Taylor’s experience does not end there. She held the position of Program Specialist for After School Matters (ASM) where she co-created that organization’s values statement and annual citywide showcase of after-school programs. Previous to ASM, she served as Interim Center Director and Cultural Program Coordinator for South Shore Cultural Center.
She received her M.A. Community Development & Social Justice degree from Loyola University, has a B.S. in Kinesiology from the University of Illinois at Chicago (with an emphasis on teaching health and fitness to children), and carries a Youth Development Practitioner Certification from the Chicago Area Project. She continues her education by attending seminars on nutrition and positive energy, race, gender, and anything that promotes global unity.