Tag Archives: Rahwa Habte

OPINION: The Complex Journey of a Transitional Immigrant: Words for Rahwa

by Lola E. Peters


One of my first conversations with Rahwa Habte was about the complexity of being a transitional immigrant. I’ve learned a lot since the day, 63 years ago, that I stepped off a plane into my new American life.

My story differs from Rahwa’s. My mother was the first Ethiopian woman to marry an African American man. Their story and wedding in the beautiful Greek Orthodox St. George Cathedral in Addis Ababa made the newspapers on both continents. 

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Remembering Rahwa Habte

Note: The Emerald is collecting personal reflections on Rahwa Habte from South Seattle community members. If you’d like yours included in this article, you can submit an essay that’s between 200 and 500 words to editor@southseattleemerald.com


by Naomi Ishisaka

Rahwa was truly one of a kind. She was a person who you had to experience to truly appreciate her brilliance, humor and warmth. Her ability to create spaces and connections that transcended barriers was unlike anyone else. Whether cultivating the hip hop scene, making space for women and QTPOC artists, advocating for raising the minimum wage or immigrant rights, Rahwa was always on the side of the people and justice. While most people know her for her groundbreaking work creating Hidmo, I knew her as my best friend, and the person whose analysis, wit and integrity I turned to most. Her loss is a grievous one for us all.

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