By Reyna Olaguez, Letter to the Editor

Passion and positive vibes flow from Ucedrah Osby, the president of the Bakersfield Chapter of All of Us or None (AOUON). She uses the word “love” a lot, and you can tell she feels the word when she uses it.

“I genuinely love community. I love being in community. I love Kern County,” Osby said. “That’s why I’m here and that’s why I’m addressing these issues to help the county be a better place.”

She addresses these issues primarily through her work at AOUON, a grassroots civil and human rights organization focused on advancing health and racial equity and advocating for formerly – and currently – incarcerated people and their families. 

Osby also assists the community by being kind, understanding and supportive. 

“It’s important to love our neighbors,” she said. “Love is an action, it’s important to show it.”

It’s also important to give sound advice that stresses the value of the individual. 

“[I want people] to invest in knowing yourself on the inside, so it comes through on the outside,” Osby said. “Love yourself, love your whole self.” 

When she’s not helping her community, you can find Osby enjoying a festival (any festival—art, cultural, music—she loves them all), traveling, spending time with her son Kyle, who is 6 and a “super awesome human being” or chasing excitement. 

“I love any activity that raises my adrenaline,” she said. “On my bucket list is to go skydiving over Santa Barbara. I’m an adrenaline junkie…. anything to get my heart racing, I love it.”

She can also relax. She has no problem slowing down and watching HGTV—“I can watch that all day”—or focusing on home improvement. But wherever she goes and whatever she does, she’s rooted in faith.

“I grew up in church,” said Osby. “My spirituality is a very important part of who I am. My personal relationship with my higher power not only happens within those [church] walls. It’s wherever I am.”

And wherever she is, you can bet she loves it and is spreading the positive energy.