Cleveland, OH, U.S.
Beverly Gooden is a public speaker, writer, and social activist. She is author of the book, Confessions of a Church Girl. Confessions was nominated for a 2007 African American Literary Book Award. She is a graduate of Hampton University in Hampton, Virginia.
Born in Cleveland, Ohio, Beverly attended several high schools before graduating from St. Peter Chanel High School in Bedford, Ohio. In 2005, Beverly graduated from Hampton University with a degree in Communications. She went on to attend Loyola University Chicago's Institute of Pastoral Studies, and graduated with a master's in social justice. Following the Financial crisis of 2007–08, Beverly worked for various government and nonprofit agencies to secure or administer grants and resources for those affected by the crisis. As a grant recipient of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 housing funding, Beverly worked with organizations to find stable and affordable housing for families facing housing insecurity.
Ray Rice Controversy
On September 8, 2014, Beverly started the Twitter hashtag #WhyIStayed in response to the Ray Rice elevator video that TMZ released. Herself a survivor of domestic violence, she outlined some of the reasons why a person would stay in an abusive relationship. The hashtag created a global movement to give survivors of domestic violence a voice and end victim-blaming.