Dr. Herukhuti (H. Sharif Williams, PhD., M.Ed.) is a cultural studies scholar, sex researcher-educator, systems theorist, cultural worker and interdisciplinary social scientist whose work operates at the intersection of race, culture, sexuality and spirituality. He is the founder and chief erotics officer (CEO) of the Center for Culture, Sexuality and Spirituality as well as editor-in-chief of the center’s website. The center fulfills its mission to liberate the ways people love, experience the Erotic, and connect to the Sacred by providing space for the exhibition and exploration of sensual awareness, sexual consciousness, erotic power, and pleasure; to provide a gathering place for people engaged in sexual empowerment to express themselves and enjoy erotic events, demonstrations, and sexuality-related classes.
He is a past recipient of a National Institute of Mental Health-funded graduate research assistantship, which funded his training in sex research, HIV prevention research, and socio-clinical research methodology at the HIV Center for Clinical Behavioral Studies at Columbia University and the New York State Psychiatric Institute. In September 2013, as a member of a group of bisexual researchers, leaders and activists invited to a bisexual community issues and public policy roundtable at the White House, Dr. Herukhuti co-presented on the topic of HIV and bisexuals.
Dr. Herukhuti is also a human rights and social justice activist who has participated in the decolonization movement and intersectional politics for three decades. In addition to his grassroots activism, he has been an organizer including as co-founder and the inaugural co-chair of Global Youth Connect, an international human rights organization for youth.
A poet, playwright, performance artist and stage director; two of his plays have been performed at the New York International Fringe Theatre Festival. He studied with renowned Brazilian theater director Augusto Boal, The Theatre of the Oppressed Laboratory and the Creative Arts Team in Theatre of the Oppressed. In 2014, he participated in a historic gathering of scholars and artists for a summer institute focused on the advancement of Black aesthetics and African-centered creative expressions and funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Dr. Herukhuti, author of the book Conjuring Black Funk: Notes on Culture, Sexuality, and Spirituality, Volume I (Vintage Entity Press). His work has been published and anthologized in various academic and popular contexts including Sexualities, Journal of Bisexuality, ARISE Magazine, and Ma-Ka Diasporic Juks: Contemporary Writings by Queers of African Descent. He is co-editor of Recognize: The Voices of Bisexual Men—An Anthology (Bisexual Resource Center) and Sexuality, Religion and the Sacred: Bisexual, Pansexual and Polysexual Perspectives (Routledge). A member of the editorial board of the Journal of Bisexuality, co-editor of the journal’s special double issue on spirituality and member of the Sacred Sexuality Practitioners of Color Network, he has written about and lectured on bisexuality particularly among people of African descent.
He is currently a professor of interdisciplinary studies at Goddard College where he serves as Chair of the Faculty Council, Co-Chair of the Undergraduate Programs Institutional Review Board, and a member of the Undergraduate Assessment Coordinating Committee.