The COVID-19 pandemic might have kept Americans inside their homes, but it didn’t stop America’s youth from speaking out and making a change. Reagan High School senior Olivia Moore turned the year 2020’s lemons into lemonade for the community. A Winston-Salem native, Olivia was so moved by the distressing death of George Floyd on May 25, 2020, that she felt compelled to take action. In 2020, she started Winston-Salem for Peace and Justice Community Activism Organization and organized protests attracting hundreds of participants working together to bring awareness to and combat the injustices evoked by George Floyd’s traumatic death.
Olivia’s grandmother has seen prejudice throughout her lifetime, but the George Floyd tragedy changed Olivia’s outlook and perspective on social injustice. In fact, it made her realize that race relations were worse than she initially thought. This realization jarred her, inspiring her to do whatever she could to help the community.
Following the initial protest, she organized on May 31, 2020, Winston-Salem for Peace and Justice’s Instagram account (@winston4peace) gained thousands of followers. In collaboration with other community activism groups throughout the area, Olivia, her fellow classmates, and individuals throughout the community have continued to fight for social justice ever since.
Prior to the events transpiring in 2020, Olivia still had a passion for making big changes. She aspired to attend college after graduating from high school, specifically to study international relations with a focus on equity for Middle Eastern regions. After receiving a scholarship to take an Arabic course from the Qatar Foundation, she fell in love with the language and is now able to speak basic Arabic. Her community activism has only solidified her desire to become a diplomat and impact government policies. She hopes to attend American University, studying abroad in the Middle East and becoming fluent in Arabic. Although she is prepared for the culture shock to come, her excitement diminishes any apprehension she feels about studying abroad.
Olivia holds an impressive resume at only 18 years old. At Reagan High School, she has participated in the Debate Club, Youth and Government, National Honor Society, Reagan Young democrats, Reagan Black Achievers, Reagan Outdoor Adventure Club, and was a member of the Reagan High School Jazz Band. Additionally, she is an entrepreneur, starting her own photography business and serving as the CEO of LivMore Brand Clothing Store.
Aside from her stellar GPA, Olivia has been recognized by HOPE Dealers Outreach for her community activism, along with the Society of Psychology of Women. In 2020, she won the Jack and Jill of America, Inc., Freedom to Dream Award, and placed third for a sculpture in the Jack and Jill Senior Teen Mid-Atlantic Region Teen Conference. Olivia was a 2021 panelist for the SECCA Juneteenth Event, a speaker for the Links Community Event, and a keynote speaker for the Virtual Confab Conference in 2020. Her community activism has been highlighted and featured in many local media sources, including WXII12, Spectrum Local News, and the Winston-Salem Journal to name a few. While many high school students spend their summers on family vacations or sleeping in, Olivia takes no breaks in striving for social justice. In 2021, she participated in the American University High School Summer Scholars program in Political Action and Public Policy, International Diplomacy, and Cross-Cultural Communication. In 2018 and 2019, she participated in the Gifted Center of Western Kentucky University’s Summer Program for Verbally and Mathematically Precocious Youth (VAMPY), along with the Gifted Center of Western Kentucky University’s Summer Camp for Academically Talented Students (SCATS) in 2016 and 2017.
When Olivia is not busy saving the world, you can find her working on her growing photography business, spending time with friends, and eating at local restaurants such as Sweet Potatoes. To support Winston-Salem for Peace and Justice, and to learn more about the youth-led organization’s cause, follow @winton4peace on Instagram and visit winston4peace.com.