top of page



1 : a collective body : GROUP

     a social collective

2 : a cooperative unit or organization

AbolitionWorksTN is a self-governing collective of organizers. We decide together what our priorities and goals are and what our shared work will be. Our shared values shape our work together.

Theeda Murphy

Lead Organizer

My Story

Theeda Murphy is an activist, counselor, and dreamer. She was born in Chicago in the Sixties and her earliest memories are of rallies, marches, and community advocacy. She is a proud product of Oakwood University and Fisk University, both Historically Black Universities. Her experiences working as a crisis counselor in community mental health has given her a deep understanding of the mental health delivery system and the unsung heroes who are dedicated to helping the most vulnerable in our society. She is currently working as the Lead Organizer of AbolitionWorksTN where she uses all of her knowledge and skills toward abolishing the carceral state and healing the harm it has caused.

Screenshot_20230518_202756_Ultimate Photo Mixer.jpg

Founding Organizer

Shawn'a Hatcher

My Story

Shawn'a (Kia) Hatcher was born in Milwaukee, WI and partially raised in MI. She comes from a family of preachers and teachers who taught her the power of prayer to change anyone’s life. She is a three-time college graduate and has been convicted of ten felonies. She lives in Nashville, TN, a city that does not believe in second chances, where she has had to go out and fight for everything she has achieved. She is the founder and CEO of Rychus Rydz Inc, a community organization which helps troubled youth by providing educational and vocational opportunities for them. She is also the founder of Shawn’a’s Treasures LLC, Rychus Rydz Kar Klub and Rychus Rydz Entertainment.  She is a powerhouse who has made a difference in the lives of Nashville youth and is a living example of how lives can be changed and transformed through faith and opportunities.

Elbony headshot_edited.jpg

Founding Organizer

Elbony Weatherspoon

My Story

As a native of Tennessee and a single mother of three, Elbony Weatherspoon, understands firsthand the unique challenges that women encounter daily. She is a versatile visionary on a mission to share her story and help others. Elbony aims to bring attention to the overlooked aspects of domestic violence, mental health issues, and police policies. Her personal encounters revealed the gaps in seeking help for individuals in mental health crises who resist assistance. Despite the absence of established protocols, Elbony, choosing resilience over victimhood, advocates for judicial reform. Her narrative paves the way for raising awareness and sparking necessary changes for the future. Elbony transforms her life's trials into valuable lessons, using her voice of reason to connect with others. She believes that individual impact can drive positive community transformations, leading to global change. Her motto, "Progress is a Process," fuels her determination to reach her aspirations. Through her efforts to create change within the justice system and communities, she portrays today's societal struggles, inspiring women to chase their dreams boldly and stressing the significance of self-expression and perseverance.

bottom of page