Welcome Chika!

CPE is excited to announce that Chika Okoye will be joining our staff as Lead Educator. Chika has been part of CPE’s community for a long time, first as a student and later as an educator in our Marxism 101 program for several years. Please read a note from Chika below:

Dear CPE Community:

It’s such a thrill and an honor to join CPE as a staff member. I’m excited to contribute to building sharp analysis and clear strategic thinking on the left, strengthening our movements so they can remake our world. Political education is a key factor in building our unity and in leveraging that unity to take power.

I first came to know CPE in 2017, when I walked through the doors of 518 Valencia St to join a six-part class on Black Reconstruction, W.E.B. Du Bois’s monumental treatment of a revolutionary period in American history. At the time, I was working on a master’s degree in ethnic studies, and doing an independent study on the Black Radical Tradition (shout-out to my professor Jason Ferreira, who told me to apply to the class). The experience of rigorous study with all sorts of radicals, across generations and identities, to gain insight into past and present liberation struggles, was enlivening and invaluable. Du Bois deploys Marxist frameworks, like the self-activity of Black workers and the importance of the general strike, to explain the transformations necessary for moving the U.S. from a slave society to, briefly, an experiment in abolition democracy.

I’d read brilliant texts by Marxist scholars in grad school and in self-study, but when CPE offered Marxism 101 later that year, I jumped at the chance to build from this theoretical foundation. Marxism 101 clarified for me a great deal about our capitalist and imperialist world system, sharpened my ability to analyze and understand different political moments, and allowed me to grasp how Marxist theory and methods have been so central to the movements for freedom I’ve been studying for so long.

Through my formal studies but most especially in study with movement comrades, I’ve learned how rich and rewarding it is to co-create community-based learning projects. That’s how I hope to continue CPE’s work moving forward: expanding access to fundamental programs like Marxism 101 and building spaces for educating and sharpening the skills of organizers that are both rigorous and supportive.

I look forward to meeting and working with you all over the next weeks and months!

– Chika

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