Usawa Team

We are a team of consultants and facilitators from a variety of backgrounds. We are of different ages, races/ethnicities, gender identities, sexual identities, and we have different lived experiences. We view things through our unique lenses and love each other and how we work together. While we have over 30 years of combined experience learning, teaching, and facilitating on the topic of oppression, we consider ourselves to be as engaged in the learning process as those we chose to work with.

We acknowledge that learning and understanding oppression never ends, and we actively engage in continued education about all forms of oppression. We work together to challenge ourselves individually and in our relationships with others, by excavating those characteristics of patriarchal white supremacy that we have internalized and continue to act out in our lives. It is our hope that we model this behavior and reflective engagement in the process to those around us.

Tonia Burkett (She/They)

Dreamer, facilitator, and consultant at Usawa Consulting

I’m a Black woman of mixed heritage (African and NW European descent). I grew up in the Pacific Northwest and lived in the South for 17 years.

I am dedicated to anti-racist social justice organizing and learning. My passion and interest in social justice are an important part of my life, whether I was providing customer service in retail, teaching undergraduate students (or community), being an Auntie to children in my life, taking care of animals, or developing friendships.

I live at multiple intersections of privilege/power and marginalization as a person of the global majority (PGM) with low vision and chronic illness. I am cis-gender, queer, fat, an English-speaking citizen of the U.S., low-income (and often poor), single, childless, and sheltered.

I actively educate, organize, and consult about equity in my personal and professional life. I am deeply compassionate and empathetic toward all people. My values include accountability, respect, curiosity, and creativity. I graduated from Portland State University with a Bachelor of Science in Sociology and a Certificate in Black Studies. In addition to those degrees, I completed extensive coursework in women and gender studies. I have a Master of Science in Sociology from Portland State University and I have completed all the coursework for a doctorate in Sociology from North Carolina State University. My specialty areas are Social Inequality, Medical Sociology, and Mental Health. I have been an anti-oppression activist, organizer, and educator for over 30 years.

Outside of academia, I have worked in my communities to organize events (educational and fundraising) for social justice causes. I have served on many committees and advisory boards in communities, within higher education, and at nonprofit organizations. I have worked at nonprofits, big-box retail stores, educational institutions, and private businesses. I’ve lived in cities and rural communities, both diverse and predominately white.

I love living in the Pacific Northwest. The ocean and forests feed me. I love all animals (especially cats). When I am not working or learning about oppression, I am an auntie and devoted friend. I spend time reading/listening to at least two books a week (often romance novels), listening to music and podcasts, learning about foodways, and watching or listening to true crime documentaries.

I support the local economy, especially farmers, artisans, and food vendors.

Cendre Hunt (They/Them)

Facilitator, Consultant

My name is Cendre (pronounced Sawn-der) Hunt. I’m a Non-binary, Queer, Parent, Radical, light-skinned mixed Indigenous person and so many other things.  My childhood experiences, family, and the communities who raised me have informed nearly every aspect of my current activism, which feels more important to say than a list of ideologies and praxis. I grew up in Western Washington predominately on the Nisqually and Chehalis Reservations and in Thurston/Lewis Counties with a mixed-race immediate family that held varying spiritual beliefs as well as in the foster care system. When I was 13, I  ran away from home and was taken in by a series of families in the radical, queer, punk community members. I lived in many households and knew interpersonal and state violence at an extremely young age. After turning 18, I traveled a lot and lived all over the US and Internationally. I lived in Seattle for 10 years before moving to Quilcene 3 years ago. With all of that being said the following are some of the things I consider myself to be: an anti-racist, abolitionist, Indigenous environmental activist, intersectional feminist, pro sex-worker, a fierce supporter of my 2LGBTQIA+ kin. I also believe we are all living on stolen and occupied land.


I started participating in anti-oppression/environmental activism and community organizing in 2002. I have worked with several collectives and organizations for over 18 years. Including transformative justice and street medic collectives, environmental non-profits, 2LGBTQIA+ non-profits, and I currently sit on the board of Black Lives Matter of Jefferson County. I have helped facilitate many community workshops ranging from street medic training to consent workshops. I play music (hardcore punk, experimental electronic, and metal), and before Covid booked shows locally and around the country. The music communities that I have been involved with have also shaped my belief systems and been avenues for expressing my political ideologies. They have helped me build a community around some of the things I am passionate about. I have studied herbal medicine and edible plants of the West Cascades bioregion since I was a child. I formally participated in 10 years of Coast Salish, Ayurvedic, Chinese, and other forms of Western herbalism apprenticeships with a host of brilliant women to whom I am grateful. I love helping people feel empowered to care for themselves and their communities!

Why the name Usawa?

I have been obsessed with the idea of fairness and equity since childhood (My mantra was “It’s not fair!”). As an adult, I have refined my understanding of social justice. In many ways, it has lead me to question, explore, and expand my persepctive of fairness and justice. As a person descended from Africans, I felt drawn to my ancestors. Because of the dehumanizing nature of slavery, I like many people of African descent, do not know the origins of my ancestors. I don’t know their ethnic group, country of origin, or tribe. I just know my ancestors are from Africa. I decided to look for words in the most commonly spoken language in Africa, Swahili. Usawa is the Swahili word for equality, fairness, and balance. This word resonated with me and it became the name of my business.