SheStories Founder Anasa Troutman Supports, Encourages, and Trains Women to Flourish
By Timothy Hutchinson
As a child, Anasa describes herself as painfully shy. She gravitated to music, books, and movies. Her father loved the Star Trek saga, and they would binge watch the movies during Star Trek marathons. This lit an interest in science fiction. In her reading, she discovered Octavia Butler. Octavia Butler was an award winning black female science fiction writer who created a world where her protagonist was shy and socially awkward. The stories had themes of social justice.
This seemed to be an author tailor made for Ms. Troutman. She, as the protagonists in Butler’s books, overcame their social awkwardness and fought for social justice. With inspiration from Butler, Troutman found her own voice and broke from her shyness.
Ms. Troutman arrived at her current project like a skipping stone across a pond. She was a self-described nerd as the aforementioned avid reader and lover of science fiction.
Early in her career, she was on a pre-med course, but her love of the arts sent her stone spinning in a new direction. She started a record label, providing marketing and promotion for artists that signed with her. The harsh realities of the music industry proved incompatible with her more gentle, idealistic disposition.
With the coaxing of friends, Anasa pivoted to politics. While she shared viewpoints and hearts and minds of her political friends, but she found that politics lacked the branding and marketing that could make a greater impact. Realizing that she could combine her marketing skills, love of arts, and openhearted values with love at the center in a new business, Anasa started Eloveate, where she could produce and distribute content for maximum social and political impact. Her goal is to support those whose message of love is central in their work.
Reconnecting with her inner nerd, Troutman also started Shelectricity, where she taught girls of color art and technology.
The SheStories Project
Already focused on equipping girls through Shelectricity, the 2016 election frustrated Anasa as blatant sexism seemed to abound. She felt a large number of people were voting against a woman rather than voting for a candidate. She concluded that women needed a place to tell their stories, so she formed her current project SheStories. a platform for regular women to tell their stories. Troutman comments, “Telling stories is liberating, healing, and empowering. It touches the heart. It makes people aware of and relate to the female perspectives.”
But Troutman believes SheStories is for everyone — men and women. Since men rarely hear women’s stories, men gain an insight to the female experience. SheStories currently is a work in progress in the form these stories will take. Podcasts are promised later in 2017. Featured two-day workshops are planned in Nashville, New York, and Los Angeles where SheStories staff will teach storytelling techniques, and students will write their stories. SheStories also will offer retreats for a more immersive experience as participants will take part in group and individual exercises as the hone their storytelling skills. The retreat culminates in a video production of the participants’ stories.
Aside from these workshops, SheStories will offer video production services to individual, groups, companies, and organizations to produce content aligned with the company or organizational themes for campaigns, marketing, and other digital purposes.
Finally, SheStories will offer live events. That will feature women telling their stories on stage in front of a live audience. SheStories Live! events will feature professional storytellers and notable women telling stories around a central theme. SheStories Live! can also be the culminating event of a SheStories Workshop or retreat allowing the participants to perform in front of family, friends, and community. Anasa is excited to announce a fall series of three events at Deepak’s Homebase at NYC’s ABC Carpet & Home.
How SheStories Impacts Her Legacy
Troutman describes love as a core value that governs how we treat each other how we govern, conduct commerce, and how we create. To Troutman, love is the legacy she wishes to impart to future generations. Her goal would be to have millions of women across the world participate in SheStories workshops and tell their story. Anasa reflects, “What greater impact could I hope for than to have women all over the world tell their stories?”
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Anasa Troutman seeks to provide women the training, opportunity, and production assistance for women across the world to tell their own personal stories. Her latest project SheStories is an online platform that allows women to take workshops, go on retreats, train for live performances, and work with filmed productions of their stories. Read more about Anasa Troutman’s projects at shestories.net, anasatroutman.com, and eloveate.net.