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Social innovation x culture

Michelle Browder

More Up Campus

For 30 years, Michelle has been an advocate and activist for the at-risk and marginalized. Her heart is especially tender toward disenfranchised youth.

She noticed that young people needed someone to listen, encourage, and provide a safe space for them. She created a place that immersed students in history, “real talk,” spoken word and visual art. This experience birthed an arts-centered diversion program that was used by juvenile detention centers in Alabama and Georgia.

In the spring of 2012, Michelle and a group of chaperones took 56 students to Washington, DC to see Attorney Bryan Stevenson argue a case before the United States Supreme Court. The case focused on the constitutionality of youth being sentenced to death in prison. This encounter changed both the students’ and Michelle’s lives exponentially and birthed the I Am More Than Youth Empowerment Initiative. This initiative expanded into a non-profit that hosted community conversations, arts-centered programs for
schools and youth-led conferences.

Michelle owns and operates More Than Tours, a social enterprise that provides educational and interactive tours to students and tourists exposing the rich and sometimes haunting history of Montgomery, Alabama. More Than Tours has bridged the racial divide by reaching nearly 10,000 students and tourists.