Guy Djoken, a civil rights activist from Cameroon, fled the country in his twenties in search of better opportunities. At an early age, Djoken understood the importance of fighting for social justice, having lost his father at the hands of a justice system oppressing the people of his country.
“My father was one of those in Cameroon fighting for real independence in the country,” Djoken said. “It then resulted in him getting persecuted and sent to jail.” After his father’s death and his friend’s death, Djoken decided that he must take action and become a social justice activist for his people.
Djoken left Cameroon with hopes of returning to fight for his country from abroad and began his journey to the United States. Being in a different environment was a difficult transition for Djoken, who had to leave all of his resources behind. In spite of the challenge, Djoken was determined to create the change he wanted to see and worked hard to achieve his goals. He holds an MBA from Frostburg State University, Maryland, and taught a course called Civil Rights Chronicles: Emancipation to Civil Rights, at Frederick Community College, Maryland.
Djoken has made a name for himself in the United State, working and engaging with leaders like Former President Bill Clinton, Obama, President Biden, Maryland Gov. Wes Moore, and many more.
Djoken continues to accomplish his goals by becoming the director of the UNESCO center for peace and the President of the National Association for the Advancement of Coloured People (NAACP). He has won multiple awards for his work in the country and has learned a few strategies to approach different situations as a civil rights activist.
“When we have a battle, we should use different tools,” Djoken said. “Sometimes it’s very important to go and protest, but on the other hand, we need to find out the best way to get the best outcome. I like to turn to the three main tools that I like to use which are protesting, the Court system, and Legislative.”On Jan 30th, Djoken was elected as the Chairman of the Continental African Diversity Leadership Council in Maryland, a dream come true for him because it gives him an opportunity to help and make the U.S. and Africa better. Djoken’s aspirations include creating an African network that will ensure the voices of African-born immigrants are heard at decision-making processes and in government organizations such as the City Council and the State Council.
On February 11, David Trone, a member of Congress, and Van Hollen, a U.S. Senator, reached out to Djoken with emails of congratulations. Djoken is now settling into his new role and has plans to have a meeting to see what needs to be done.
“I’m working with folks in Frederick Maryland to create what I call an African network, Frederick Chapter,” Djoken said. “This is going to be a platform that makes sure that the voice of Africa is heard.
”As Chairman of the Continental African Diversity Leadership Council, Guy Djoken is determined to make sure that the people of Africa have a voice that is heard and to ensure that the American Dream is attainable for all.
Written By: Karesha Graham