Omope Carter DaboikuWest Dayton Stories Community Producer
Known affectionately as Mama O, Omope Carter Daboiku is a 2012 migrant to the Miami Valley. Originally from Ironton, in southern Ohio, she identifies as an Appalachian of mixed ancestry. Trained as a cultural geographer, Mama O has 30 years of experience as an international performance artist, educator, and published writer. The founder of the local Dunbar Literary Circle, her storytelling is included in Dayton Metro Library’s new Dial-a-Story service, and she’s working with arts education ally, Muse Machine, to produce writing and theater resources for virtual learning.
Since COVID-19, her work on Dayton’s west-side has shifted from academic tutoring to restoring agriculture as an African American heritage craft, supporting access to healthy food, and inspiring cross-town civic engagement through science education and the arts.
Storyteller and folklorist Omopé Carter Daboiku draws on the deep well of her Appalachian forebears in her professional life, but that heritage has also proven to be a source of solace and inspiration in these tough times.