o smith

o smith

Co-Director of NCEI

Pronouns: they/them/theirs
Started at Nexus: 2020

At Nexus:

I first began with Nexus Community Partners in Jan 2019 as a consultant supporting MacArthur Foundation’s Safety and Justice Challenge.  In January 2020, I was hired on full-time to continue in this role and offer additional support within the Nexus Community Engagement Institute.


o (they/them) envisions a world where communities, especially those Black, under resourced, marginalized and historically oppressed, are autonomous in shaping their lives and  delivering equitable policies for all. They believe deeply that in order to make space for such a world, old systems rooted in capitalism, white supremacy, anti-blackness and cultural genocide need to be abolished. They come to Nexus rooted in serving communities in various forms and have had a  nuanced lens around criminal justice and the intersections of race, gender, sexuality and socioeconomic status. 

o is happiest when they are surround by community and their loved ones. They’re a foodie, bad dancer and while born and raised in the Bronx has come to call Minnesota home.


“Love takes off masks that we fear we cannot live without and know we cannot live within.” - James Baldwin