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Rev D'ana Downing


Rev. D'ana Downing (she/her/hers) is an interdisciplinary scholar-practitioner and interfaith movement chaplain passionate about spiritual and identity formation of college-aged students. She currently serves as the assistant university chaplain at Northwestern University and is the first African American to serve in the role. As a Womanist and Afrofuturist, she is committed to the wholeness and well-being of all people; and believes that we have the power to co-create a more just and equitable future.

Her vast and diverse professional experiences in higher education, social services, arts and entertainment, and faith-based institutions allows her to assist clients to lean into “What Box?” thinking and allows them to dream big and executive visions confidently to serve global communities. For the last 20 years, and as the founder of Light+Essence she has provided corporate trainings, workshops, and technical support to clients as they navigate strategic planning, board governance, resource and leadership development centering a racial justice framework.