Runako Jahi culturally defines his art as “telling the African American story in the first voice.” He began his theatrical journey in 1972 as an actor, then later developed into a director, playwright, and graphic artist. As a teaching artist, he has inspired and trained many performers and arts practitioners. He coached singer/actor Jennifer Hudson for her film audition for Dreamgirls and has more than thirty years of experience developing youth and adult talent. Runako served as Artistic Director of eta Creative Arts Foundation from 1990 to 2014. He continues working as a freelance artist and loves it.