Serena Rahzie Seals


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Serena “Rahzie” Seals was born and raised in Syracuse, NY and is a native of the city’s South Side.  Serena is a promoter, organizer, and activist dedicated to social justice. 

Serena is a leader in Black Lives Matter - Syracuse. Rahzie, as she is known to friends and family, is running on the Platform of the Movement for Black Lives. She said at her campaign announcement that “when all black lives matter, everyone’s life will matter.”

The issues around police brutality are personal for Rahzie. Her father, Tom Seals, was one of the first African American police officers in the city who advocated for the Citizens Review Board and later became 4th district councilor. Her cousin, Jonny Gammage, was infamously suffocated to death by police officers – much like Eric Garner on Staten Island in 2014 – in a traffic stop outside Pittsburgh in 1995 while staying with his cousin and Serena’s brother, Ray Seals, a defensive end with the Pittsburgh Steelers. In 2016, another cousin, Darren Seals, an anti police brutality activist in Ferguson, Missouri who was close to Michael Brown’s family, was shot dead in his burned out car in a still unsolved murder, one of three community activists killed in that manner since Michael Brown’s death.

Rahzie is the founder of Black Cuse Pride, an organization committed to providing access to entertainment, community resources and creating an inclusive, welcoming environment for LGBTQ people of color communities in Syracuse. Serena went to Corcoran High School, is a Job Corps graduate, studied communication and public relations at Monroe Community College, and currently works in the hospitality industry.

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