Ayodele Nzinga,MFA,PhD, is often referred to as a renaissance woman. She is a talented actress, a powerhouse SpokenWord Artist, a lyricist, a published poet, a playwright, film and stage director, producer, recording artist, and film writer. She was the Artistic Director of the original Recovery Theater. She is the founding Artistic Director of The Sister Thea Bowman Memorial Theater, a 100 seat theater built in 2000, to facilitate Nzinga’s desire to use live performance as a form of community engagement. Nzinga is the Founder Producing Director of The Lower Bottom Playaz Inc., Oakland CA’s premiere North American African Theater Company. Ayodele Nzinga became the only director, the only producer, her Lower Bottom Playaz, the only theatrical entity of any size anywhere to fully stage the complete works of August Wilson's American Century Cycle in chronological order. Nzinga who has been described by academics as a rare hybrid of theoretician and practitioner uses her practice to nurture future performers, engage at risk students, and to help facilitate the seeding of creative innovators. Nzinga was honored in 2016 for Excellence in Arts Leadership by the Alameda County Arts commission, and by Theater Bay Area for being one of the 40 Bay Area Theater Makers that helped change the face of theater in the Bay Area.