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Hanako Gavia is the Assistant Director of Butler University’s Center for Citizenship and Community. In her position, along with supporting community partnerships and faculty in development of courses requiring community engagement, she supervises student managers essential to the success of Butler’s service learning program. At Butler since 2015, her family, education and work promote learning through community experiences. She often represents Butler in events, which connect academic affairs to the community. An Indianapolis resident since childhood, Ms. Gavia is a great niece of Etheridge Knight, Jr. She is very close to her family, including Etheridge Knight’s sisters, Clyneese Bennett and Janice Knight, who knew Etheridge Knight intimately. Ms. Gavia’s mother, Teruko Knight-Gavia, also spent time with Knight while he visited Ball State University for guest lectures. Ms. Gavia has participated in the Etheridge Knight festival to honor the memory of her late great uncle, along with being in attendance at Central Library’s inaugural event for the Center for Black Literature and Culture. Ms. Gavia is a graduate of Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana, with a major in international studies with a thematic concentration in culture and arts, and minors in Japanese and Spanish and is currently enrolled in the Master’s of Education for Effective Teaching and Leadership at Butler University. She is part of the Cultural Diversity Drum Circle which is a group dedicated to sharing rhythms from all parts of the world. She is president and dance instructor of Okinawa Yuyukai, which is an Okinawan culture group that specializes in eisa, an Okinawan form of drum dancing. As the main point of contact with the University and family of Etheridge Knight, Ms. Gavia coordinates the Community Advisory Committee piece of the project.

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