project leader
Samaria R
6117 St. Clair Ave
(St. Clair/ Superior)
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the project

The murder of Tamir Rice at the hands of the Cleveland Police in 2014 stunned the nation. To uplift Tamir’s legacy, his mother, Samaria Rice, founded the Tamir Rice Foundation to advocate for youth and families. In 2018, in honor of what would have been Tamir's 16th birthday, the foundation announced plans to build The Tamir Rice Afrocentric Cultural Center, which will provide arts, cultural, educational, and civic programs for youth ages 10-19 that celebrate the history and culture of people of African descent in Cleveland, OH.  Our initial campaign raised over $30,000 for the visioning and planning process, the development of architectural plans and capital improvements, and for the recruitment of community stakeholders. 

Now we move to our next stage - the creation of a strategic and artistic plan, the implementation of construction work, the development of a sustainable community engagement process, and the introduction of our artist-activist focus for the Center.  This phase requires additional administrative support, as well as community education and outreach. 

At the 5th Anniversary Memorial Ceremony at the Cleveland Museum of Art on November 20, 2019, Ms. Rice will unveil the design for The Tamir Rice Afrocentric Cultural Center, explain her commitment to the local and national artists who have revealed the transformative power of the arts in creating Tamir's legacy, and will open a dialogue about the role of the Center as part of the arts and activist community.  

The funds raised through this campaign will support both the anniversary event and provide ongoing support for the next phase of planning and construction.

the steps


  • Work with architect to complete design
  • Develop media campaign about the vision for Tamir’s Center
  • Announce Tamir’s 5th Anniversary Memorial at CMA


  • Give away 75 complimentary tickets to high school students (16+) for the ceremony
  • Host Tamir’s 5th Anniversary Memorial at CMA


  • Develop strategic plan and community engagement events
  • Continue architectural and construction plans 


  • Approve contracts for boundary and asbestos surveys
  • Hire professional support for The Tamir Rice Foundation, including administrative, development and marketing personnel


  • Complete boundary and asbestos surveys
  • Hire contractors and develop work schedule


  • Start construction on renovations of the building

why we're doing it

Systemic inequities, racial violence and poverty create immense barriers for Cleveland youth seeking to express themselves and produce long-term negative effects on their daily lives.  Kids and teens need safe, accessible and inspirational spaces where they can explore their identities, grow and learn without limits, and envision and create change in their communities. The Tamir Rice Afrocentric Cultural Center will fulfill this need.  With over 3500 square feet, our building at 61st and St. Clair will include classrooms, visual art and dance studios, exhibit spaces, and a state-of-the-art black box theater. 

African-centered courses in civics, expressive arts, and theater will help promote the social and artistic development of Cleveland youth.  Guest artists and speakers, touring exhibits and cultural programs will expose children and their families to the rich history and legacy of Afrocentric arts, connecting the lived experiences of Cleveland youth to the generations of artists, activists and civic leaders who came before them and allowing them to create a stronger and more beautiful future.

Ms. Rice knows that art is a catalyst for social change, and in the wake of Tamir's death, she has been supported and inspired by the artist activists who push boundaries, advocate for social reform and uplift Tamir's legacy in a myriad of ways.  Through the innovative work of The Tamir Rice Afrocentric Cultural Center and along with community stakeholders, she will deepen the impact of the arts in our city, develop a new generation of activists, and create a nurturing space that faciltates healing and the pursuit of self-determination. 


Disbursed Budget:

5th Anniversary Memorial Ceremony $4,246
*Community Engagement*
- Strategic Plan $7,000
*Professional Services*
- Administrative and Development Personnel $5,000
- Boundary and Asbestos Survey $5,000
- Building Improvements $7,000

TOTAL RAISED = $30,741.00
ioby Platform Fee $35.00
ioby Fiscal Sponsorship Fee (5%) $1,537.05
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%) $922.23

Original Budget:

Remembering Tamir

- 5th Anniversary Memorial Ceremony $5,000

Community Engagement

- Strategic Plan $12,000

Professional Services

- Administrative and Development Personnel $8,000


- Boundary and Asbestos Survey $6,000

- Building Improvements $9,000

(will augment previous campaign of $30k+)

ioby Platform Fee     $35
ioby Fiscal Sponsorship Fee (5%)    $2,176
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%)    $1,305
TOTAL TO RAISE =    $43,516





Ms. Rice joined artists and activists Theaster Gates, Opal Tometi, and Bakari Kitwana to discuss the role of art and activism in calling attention to police brutality

CLEVELAND – On November 20, Samaria Rice, mother of Tamir Rice and Founder of The Tamir Rice Foundation, joined internationally renowned artist and activist Theaster Gates to commemorate the fifth anniversary of Tamir’s death. Samaria and Theaster joined forces to discuss art and activism, as well as unveil plans for the new Tamir Rice Afrocentric Cultural Center, designed by local architect Sandra Madison. The commemoration event marks the beginning of a fundraising campaign to support the Tamir Rice Afrocentric Cultural Center, which will provide Cleveland youth with artistic, educational and civic youth programs that celebrate the history and culture of people of African descent.

“The arts helped Tamir with self-expression,” said Samaria Rice. “He would want to live in a world that is equitable for all people. The development of the Tamir Rice Afrocentric Cultural Center is an opportunity to build Tamir’s legacy and give hope through the arts to children living in Cleveland’s inner city.”

In partnership with Rebuild Foundation, the arts, education and cultural development organization that stewards the Tamir Rice Memorial Gazebo, the commemoration featured a conversation between Theaster Gates and journalist and activist Bakari Kitwana. In their conversation, they thoughtfully examined the role of contemporary artists during times of racial and political unrest, and analyzed how art has been utilized to pursue justice for Tamir.

“As we approach the fifth anniversary of Tamir’s death, we are reminded of the responsibility we have to preserve and celebrate Tamir’s life and legacy,” says artist and activist Theaster Gates. “As artists, we have the tools and the platforms to grieve, reflect, honor, and call for justice through our work. I am incredibly grateful for Samaria’s activism, strength, and friendship.”

The evening, held at the Cleveland Museum of Art, included a screening of the Emmy-nominated documentary short Traveling While Black, remarks by artists Michael Rakowitz, EJ Hill, Shelia Pree Bright and Amanda D. King, and performances by Jasiri X and Lexy Lattimore.

Watch the conversation between Theaster Gates & Bakari Kitwana,

Tamir Rice's Legacy Events


Art, Activism and The Legacy of Tamir Rice

Join us  for Tamir’s fifth commemoration, an inspiring day of the arts, featuring Samaria Rice, Theaster Gates and special guests. They will celebrate Tamir's life through music, film, dance and visual arts and examine the role of the artist activist in the pursuit of racial equity and justice, in Cleveland and beyond. 

To attend the Tamir Rice Legacy luncheon visit,

To attend Art, Activism and the Legacy of Tamir Rice visit,

To read more about Tamir Rice's commemoration events visit,


This is where photos will go once we build flickr integration


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