Kirtrina Baxter

Born: 1969 | New Brunswick, NJ, US

Kirtrina Baxter was born in 1969 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. She grew up in a diverse neighborhood in Willingboro, New Jersey, where her parents are Evangelical pastors. Katrina spent childhood summers in Philadelphia visiting extended family. After her college years she moved to Mt. Airy and then Northern Liberties in Philadelphia. Kirtrina’s spiritual journey—from an evangelical upbringing, through radical black cosmologies, to earthly goddess readings, and especially the experience of becoming a mother—all inspired her deep relationship with nature. After living with her daughter in upstate New York for many years, Kirtrina returned to Philadelphia in the early 2000s to build coalitions with urban farmers, especially within Philadelphia’s black community. Working out of the Law Center (formerly PILCOP), Kirtrina coorganizes the Soil Generation coalition. She also serves as a board member and farm manager with Urban Creators in North Philadelphia.

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Interview Details

Interview no.: Research Interview 0142
No. of pages: 51
Minutes: 142

Interview Sessions

Roger Eardley-Pryor
27 July 2017 and 2 August 2017
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States

Abstract of Interview

Kirtrina Baxter was born in 1969 in New Brunswick, New Jersey. She grew up in a diverse neighborhood in Willingboro, New Jersey, where her parents are Evangelical pastors. Katrina spent childhood summers in Philadelphia visiting extended family. After her college years she moved to Mt. Airy and then Northern Liberties in Philadelphia. Kirtrina’s spiritual journey—from an evangelical upbringing, through radical black cosmologies, to earthly goddess readings, and especially the experience of becoming a mother—all inspired her deep relationship with nature. After living with her daughter in upstate New York for many years, Kirtrina returned to Philadelphia in the early 2000s to build coalitions with urban farmers, especially within Philadelphia’s black community. Working out of the Law Center (formerly PILCOP), Kirtrina coorganizes the Soil Generation coalition. She also serves as a board member and farm manager with Urban Creators in North Philadelphia.

About the Interviewer

Roger Eardley-Pryor

Roger Eardley-Pryor earned his PhD in 2014 from the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB). At UCSB, he became a National Science Foundation graduate fellow in the Center for Nanotechnology in Society. Prior to that, Roger earned his B.Phil. in Interdisciplinary Studies from Miami University in Ohio. As a historian of science, technology, and the environment, Roger taught courses at Portland State University, at Linfield College in Oregon, and at Washington State University in Vancouver, Washington. From 2015-2018, Roger held a postdoctoral Research Fellowship in the Center for Oral History at the Science History Institute. His work explored ways that twentieth and twenty-first-century scientists and engineers, culture-makers, and political actors have imagined, confronted, or cohered with nature at various scales, from the atomic to the planetary. Roger also co-designed, earned funding for, and managed the place-based oral history project titled “Imagining Philadelphia’s Energy Futures.” In 2018, Roger joined the Oral History Center in the Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley.