- A Carriacou word meaning women who work together as
friends and lovers. The name ZAMI also honors the late Audre
Lorde, a Black lesbian feminist who was poet laureate for New
York State and who wrote the biomythography ZAMI: A New
Spelling of My Name.
ZAMI, Inc. is a not-for-profit collective of
lesbians of African descent residing in the Atlanta Metropolitan
area. Our primary mission is the procurement and dispensation of
scholarship funds to lesbians
of African descent attending an accredited post secondary
institution in the southern part of the United States. We also
provide a forum and affirming safe space for the voices of
lesbian writers of color. Finally, ZAMI sponsors special
programming to develop the leadership potential of young
lesbians and to honor the life and legacy of Audre Lorde.
Some of the Board members
and Executive Director.
Mary Anne, Frances and BJ.
Charone, Edith and Tracy.
In October 1989, a Women of Color Caucus (WOCC) was created by
lesbian members of the African-American Lesbian and Gay Alliance
(AALGA) to focus on their political, social, economic, and
personal needs. In June 1990, WOCC members voted to secede from
AALGA in order to become an autonomous entity.
Ever evolving, these women renamed themselves ZAMI — a Carriacou
word meaning women who work together as friends and lovers. The
name ZAMI also honors the late Audre Lorde, a Black lesbian
feminist who was poet laureate for New York state and who wrote
the biomythography ZAMI: A New Spelling of My Name.
For most of its existence, ZAMI provided a support base of
discussion, information and programming for lesbians of African
descent in the Atlanta area. In February 1997, ZAMI narrowed its
focus to promote, enhance and sustain the
Scholarship Fund. Then in beginning in Feburary 2001, Zami
began to sponsor four
monthly support groups, each of which meet at the YouthPride
Center in Decatur.
Since our founding, we've...
Presented celebrations honoring the life and work of Audre Lorde
We've given away 22 $1000 scholarships to out black lesbians
enrolled in colleges in the Southeast.
Published a bi-monthly newsletter
Hosted Black Lesbian writers and musicians:
Catherine E. McKinley
Evelyn C. White
Robin G. White
Premiered the works of Black lesbian artists in Atlanta:
Video activist Jocelyn Taylor
Filmmakers Michelle Parkerson and Ada Gay Griffin
Co-sponsored important events:
The Atlanta Premiere of A Litany for
Survival: The Life and Work of Audre Lorde
Annual Bayard Rustin rally
Mab Segrest, Minnie Bruce Pratt and Suzanne
Pharr reading with Southerns on New Ground (SONG)
The first lesbian and gay Black History
Celebration at Spelman College
Conducted a weekend retreat on internalized
homophobia with funding from the Fund for Southern Communities
Organized a reading on the work of Pat
Parker ,black lesbian feminist poet in conjunction with Charis
Books and More, Atlanta Lesbian Cancer Initiative, and the
First Existentalist Congregation
Conducted Atlanta University Center
Outreach Program and Scholarship and Community Outreach
Because of ZAMI's demonstrated commitment to
leadership development of young women, since 1997, we have been
awarded three grants by the Community Foundation for Greater
Atlanta to conduct an outreach program for lesbians and bisexual
women in the Atlanta University Center and to provide general
support to administer the Audre Lorde Scholarship Fund.
Beginning in Feburary 2001, Zami also sponsors four monthly
support groups, each of which meet at the YouthPride Center in
Audre Lorde Scholarship Fund
The Audre Lorde Scholarship Awards are
designed to recognize out* lesbians of African descent who are
making significant contributions to their communities. ZAMI
wants to support and encourage their continuing education by
providing scholarships to those women enrolled in accredited
technical, undergraduate and graduate programs.
In 2002, we are also recognizing an outstanding* out gay male
scholar of African descent. The Tony Daniels Community Ally
Award is awarded to a male student who otherwise meets all the
criteria of the Audre Lorde Scholarship Fund. In particular,
this scholarship is intended for a brother who works to build
bridges between communities. (Preference will be given to a man
who does significant work in women's communities.)
For more information, see these pages or email
P.O. Box 2502
Decatur, GA 30031
Call the ZAMI line:
1st Sundays, 4-6 p.m.
Coming Out Support Group for all ages
2nd Sundays, 4-6 p.m.
Outlook: Support / Discussion group for Sistas 20- 39 years of
3rd Sundays, 4-6 p.m.
SAGE: Sistas Aging Gracefully Everywhere -- for Wimmin 40 and
4th Sunday, 4-6 p.m.
Black Lesbians with Children -- Wimmin of all ages welcome
For More Information
Contact ZAMI -- phone (404) 370-0920 or email