About

The African American Mayors Association (AAMA) is the only organization exclusively representing African-American mayors in the United States. AAMA exists to empower local leaders for the benefit of their citizens. The role of the African American Mayors Association includes taking positions on public policies that impact the vitality and sustainability of cities; providing mayors with leadership and management tools; and creating a forum for member mayors to share best practices related to municipal management.

darkcity

AAMA Staff

Phyllis Dickerson

Chief Executive Officer

Antonio Scott

Managing Director & Chief of Staff

Ashley Roberts

Director of External Affairs & Special Events

Darian Vayson

Director of Policy & Programs

Kevyanna Rawls

Grant Coordinator

Hometown:

Little Rock, AR

Hobbies:

  • Traveling
  • Shopping
  • Connecting people to AAMA

Favorite Quote:

“I am the dream and the hope of the slave.”

Maya Angelou

Phyllis Dickerson

Chief Executive Officer

Phyllis Dickerson has served as an authority on government administration for nearly two decades, lending her expertise to mayors, U.S. presidents, and those they represent.

As the CEO of the African American Mayors Association (AAMA), the only organization exclusively representing African American mayors in the United States, Dickerson works to empower local leaders for the benefit of their citizens. Under her leadership, AAMA advocates for public policies that improve the vitality of cities, while offering mayors the leadership and management tools required to turn those policies into action. The organization also functions as a forum for member mayors to share best practices related to municipal management and operational excellence. Dickerson provides crucial leadership to AAMA staff, acts as its most prominent spokesperson, and oversees a multi-million budget and fundraising strategy—all in service of meeting the diverse needs of the association’s members.

Before leading AAMA, Dickerson worked as the lead advance staffer for the Clinton and Obama administration, as well as the Regional Mayoral Director for Mike Bloomberg’s 2020 Presidential Campaign. In 2015, she became the first woman to ever be appointed as chief of staff to the mayor of Little Rock, Arkansas. In this role, she coordinated daily operations within Mayor Mark Stodola’s office, conducted research and analyses on constituent issues, and provided support for the implementation of special programs and initiatives. Additionally, she served as the Special Events & Program Coordinator for the City of Little Rock. In that capacity, she was responsible for planning the historic Central High Integration 50th Anniversary.

Dickerson is also the CEO & President of Red Ink, LLC, which assists organizations with business development and government relations. Throughout her career, Dickerson has proudly served on the boards of the National Forum for Black Public Administrators (NFBPA), the Delta Research & Education Foundation, and the Cross World Africa Foundation. She is a member of the Little Rock Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and is a staunch advocate for children with Sickle Cell Anemia Disease.

Dickerson holds a Master of Arts degree in Human Resource Development from Webster University, as well as a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Business Management from the University of Central Arkansas. She currently resides in Washington D.C. and Little Rock, AR, where she enjoys traveling, reading, and watching Western films.

Contact Phyllis Dickerson at Aama@ourmayors.org
for more information about our organization.

Hometown:

Memphis, TN

Hobbies:

  • Reading about leadership and race relations
  • Cooking
  • Talking about all things Memphis, and playing with my dog Roscoe

Favorite Quote:

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others.”

Rev. Dr. Martin Luther
King, Jr

Antonio Scott

Managing Director & Chief of Staff

Antonio D. Scott currently serves as the Managing Director and Chief of Staff for the African American Mayors Association (AAMA). Prior to joining AAMA, Antonio was the Chief of Staff and Director of Strategic Initiatives at the National Bankers Association (NBA) and its non-profit affiliate, the National Bankers Community Alliance (NBCA) in Washington, DC. While at NBA/NBCA, Antonio assisted in the roll-out of a first-of-its-kind equity-focused framework tool specifically created for minority depository institutions (MDIs) to assess their impact on closing the racial wealth gap. Also while at NBA/NBCA, Antonio spearheaded the planning of the 95th Anniversary Annual Conference, which was NBA’s largest convening to date. Antonio has also previously worked in the Strategic Partnerships division of ALSAC/St. Jude, the fundraising and awareness organization for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, located in Memphis, Tennessee. This is Antonio’s second stint at AAMA, having previously served as a senior programs manager for the organization, coordinating the teaching, learning, and leadership development portfolios.

Antonio is an alumnus of the University of Memphis, where he earned a Bachelor of Professional Studies degree in Organizational Leadership, and the University of Maryland, where he earned a Master of Arts degree in Higher Education. A higher education administrator by training, Antonio is an experienced program director with a political instinct who strives to build community with a focus on mission-driven impact.

Contact Antonio Scott at Antonio@ourmayors.org
for more information about our organization.

Hometown:

Charlotte, NC

Hobbies:

  • Traveling internationally
  • Trying new restaurants and cuisines
  • Singing at church and walks in nature

Favorite Quote:

“Nobody is free until everybody is free.”

Fannie
Lou Hammer

Ashley Roberts

Director of External Affairs & Special Events

Ashley Roberts serves as the Director of External Affairs & Special Events. Prior to joining AAMA, she worked at American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) as the Diversity Executive Leadership Program (DELP) Manager. DELP aims to support individuals from under-represented identity groups to advance into the ranks of leadership in the association management profession. Ashley fully supported the day to day operations and management of the renowned DELP scholarship and partnerships. She also served as a Senior Manager of Volunteer Relations, where she focused on member engagement through short-term volunteer projects to committee, council, and board service. Other contributions for her time at ASAE include managing several award programs centered around leadership honors and organizational marketing, membership, and communication campaigns.

Ashley is an alumna of The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she received her Bachelors of Arts in Sociology and Bachelors of Arts in Management & Society. Ashley is an experienced non-profit management professional that prides herself on creating exceptional experiences for the members and organizations she serves.

Contact Ashley Roberts at Ashley@ourmayors.org
for more information about our organization.

Hometown:

Little Rock, AR

Hobbies:

  • Reading
  • Journaling
  • Trying new restaurants

Favorite Quote:

“Do everything in love.” – 1 Corinthians 16:14
Darian Vayson

Director of Policy & Programs

Darian Vayson currently serves as the Director of Policy and Programs for the African American Mayors Association (AAMA). Before joining AAMA, Darian worked as an Operations Associate with Atlanta Unbound Academy while earning her Master’s Degree in Public Policy from Georgia State University (GSU). During her time at GSU, Darian served as the Graduate Student Coordinator for Georgia State University’s Nonprofit Leadership Alliance, where she planned and promoted member meetings, increased membership, managed a crowdfunding campaign, and managed the organization’s social media presence. Darian has always had a passion for politics and public service. Darian has interned as a legislative aide for Georgia State Representative Dar’Shun Kendrick. In addition, Darian earned her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Spelman College, where she graduated with honors.

Contact Darian Vayson at Darian@ourmayors.org
for more information about our organization.

Hometown:

Little Rock, AR

Hobbies:

  • Reading about social equity and justice
  • Listening to music
  • Cooking new meals
  • Journaling

Favorite Quote:

“I want to be on your right or your left side, not in terms of some political kingdom or ambition. But I just want to be there in love and in justice and in truth and in commitment to others, so that we can make of this old world a new world”

Rev. Dr.
Martin Luther King, Jr

Kevyanna Rawls

Grant Coordinator

Kevyanna Rawls (she/her) serves as the Grant Coordinator for the African American Mayors Association (AAMA). Kevyanna joins our team with several years of experience in public service, leadership, and project management. Prior to working with AAMA, Kevyanna served as Project Manager at a non-profit in Memphis, Tennessee for grants addressing health disparities in the Latinx/e community. In her role, Kevyanna prioritized community engagement, local policies, and volunteer management to strengthen community relationships with government stakeholders.

Kevyanna is a Master of Public Policy candidate at Georgetown University and an alumna of the University of Memphis where she obtained her Bachelor of Arts in English with a concentration in African American literature and a Bachelor of Arts in African/African American Studies. Kevyanna is a service-oriented leader committed to creating a more equitable and inclusive world through creating community centered social policies and increased opportunities in historically underrepresented communities.

Contact Kevyanna Rawls at Kevyanna@ourmayors.org
for more information about our organization.