Allison Diamond


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Allison Diamond is an African American woman who grew up in New Jersey and Ohio. Beginning in high school, she engaged in various volunteer work such as helping immigrants settle in Cleveland as well as providing meals to the unhoused. Expected to go to college since she was a child, she obtained her bachelor’s and master’s degree from Clinton State University (CSU) in Ohio. She moved to Nevada to pursue a doctoral degree in sociology at University of Nevada Las Vegas where learned how to converse and challenge ideas with other academics. The recession disrupted her studies and graduate school had put her in huge debt. When COVID-19 emerged, Diamond returned to her volunteer and sewing roots as a Sewing Auntie for the Auntie Sewing Squad.

Thematic Summary

Diamond explains why she decided to attend University of Las Vegas Nevada to pursue a doctoral degree in sociology, how the recession disrupted her doctoral work, and provides a commentary on graduate school debt. She reflects on how she grew up in a diverse area in New Jersey as compared to her times in Ohio and Las Vegas. (10:07) Diamond then shares that graduate school left a gap in her history of volunteer work and she was able to return to service when she joined the Auntie Sewing Squad. She reflects on how her participation in the Auntie Sewing Squad has evolved over the course of the pandemic, from when she lost her job due to COVID-19 and was diagnosed with cancer. (19:17) Diamond discusses her own complicated relationship to sewing and how the Auntie Sewing Squad helped her embrace this skill. She moves on to share her hopes for the future of the Auntie Sewing Squad. (26:18) Finally, Diamond reveals her favorite part of being in the Squad: Auntie Care. She talks about the major takeaways: how the Auntie Sewing Squad provides a model for how to organize a group for mutual aid. (34:27)

Interview Date



Taylor Trivino; Brooke Greer

Interview with Allison Diamond



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