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Meet Dawn Smith of Raising Our Sons in America in Metro Atlanta (Conyers)

Today we’d like to introduce you to Dawn Smith.

Dawn, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
As a leader in both Ministry and education, I have always wanted to serve others. Growing up in the Eastside of Atlanta, I was always a prissy girl, focusing on a love of books & ballet. My entire world centered around church, dance and all things girly. Never in my wildest dreams would I have ever imagined being the mother of three boys. In light of the recent highlighted events in America concerning black males and law enforcement, it stirred up personal convictions. The long-standing history African Americans have had with law enforcement (slave masters, Night Riders, Civil War marauders, KKK, etc.) has had a profoundly negative impact in our communities. I found myself in deep, depressing thoughts of a possible disparaging future for my own sons. In 2017, the Lord spoke clearly: “We wrestle not against flesh and blood… you are a chosen generation… to whom much is given, much is required.” Being fully aware of His voice and the implications of His calling, ROSA, Inc (as it is affectionately known) was birthed.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
This journey has not always been an easy one. With our oldest son being diagnosed with ADHD, I often struggled with the fine line of colleague and parent. Although our sons have been blessed to have phenomenal teachers, I’ve always had the urge to advocate for research-based strategies that prove most effective for reaching black boys. My husband and I have had to learn strategies that haven’t always been the norm in our culture. Looking back, we wouldn’t trade anything for this journey!

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Raising Our Sons in America story. Tell us more about it.
Raising Our Sons in America, affectionately known as ROSA, Inc., is a non-profit organization that serves parents and educators of black boys. Our mission is to Empower, Educate, and Encourage™️. We began facilitating Professional Development workshops for teachers such as The Star Techy Teacher™️ and Effective Teaching Strategies for African American Boys™️. ROSA, Inc. also facilitates various parent workshops and forums evoking social change around Metro Atlanta. In 2018, this movement launched the Conquering the Mountains Conference for Parents & Educators ™️ providing personal and professional resources. In 2018, the conference honored the likes of leaders such as artist 1K Phew, Pastor Lee May, Sam Collier, Dr. Jawanza Kunjufu, and several others for their contributions to their respective communities. We are most proud of our recent publication that provokes positive self-talk: “30-Day Affirmations for African American Boys”©️.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
We have been extremely blessed to be surrounded by a village of supportive friends and family. The seeds of wisdom that have been planted by our loved ones are invaluable. The ROSA Inc. movement has been a collective effort that represents a diaspora of the life lessons learned within our own circles. It is truly an honor and a privilege to be the face of this call to change.


  • “30- Day Affirmations for African American Boys” available on Amazon. $8 (digital) $12 (printed)

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Image Credit:

Cy Speaks

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