"Imakhu means One Worthy of Honor."
Queen Mother Imakhu, has enjoyed a well-rounded, forty-plus year career as an artist, activist, motivational speaker, lecturer, and yoga instructor.
The blessing of Imakhu's career has been to reach and empower diverse populations as a touring performer and workshop presenter. As an arts educator, Queen Mother has also seen the self-esteem of Black and Brown students improve through cultural heritage instruction. Queen Mother has taught African/Latino drumming, dance, theater, music, visual and literary arts throughout her forty-plus year career. She has also specialized in teaching physically challenged, at-risk, and detention home Black and Latinx youth throughout New Jersey, Pennsylvania and New York. She continues to teach drumming, dance, meditation and yoga to youth, elders, women healing from domestic violence, business people, health professionals, and actively performs in concert as a solo artist. Her concerts are motivational, educational, and truly unforgettable experiences.
Proud mother to two adult daughters, Elaine Lloyd-Nazario was born in Elizabeth, NJ, raised in 1960’s Kenilworth, NJ, and can remember seeing crosses burned in the small town.
Former columnist/reporter for FIRST WORLD NEWS. Director and playwright. Touring actress, storyteller, vocalist, poet, dancer, and musician/percussionist throughout the U.S. and Canada. Member of NJ Storytelling Network, Patchwork Storytelling Guild, and Artists Standing Strong Together. Founder of AKERU MultiMedia in 2004. First African American woman to found and run her own 24/7 online Black & Brown Consciousness radio station in 2005. Host/Producer of video/podcast series, ASHE: The Truth is Black & Brown (2003-present), highlighting politics, cultural news, poetry, and art, return to the airwaves in fall of 2021. Imakhu is the original creator, executive director/producer and co-founder of Newark Latino Film Festival, LLC (2018), founder/director/producer of Newark Latino Fashion Show (2019), co-founder/producer of Cultures Across the City Music Festival (2019). In 2021, she founded Greater Essex LatinX Art & Film Fest.
Spiritually, Queen Mother was ordained as an Interfaith Healing Minister by Metaphysical Universal Ministries Seminary of Allentown, PA, an Ordained Interfaith Minister by Spiritual Healers & Universal Ministries in 1999, and in the same year established Universal Circle of Light Ministries, now known as Meru Nedjem Khametic Water Temple of Joy. She was enstooled as a Queen Mother in the Khametic tradition by Grandmaster Kham of Shrine of Khpra, Brooklyn, NY in 2005. She was enstooled into the National Black Council of Elders. Imakhu is known for her expertise in Ancient Khametic (Egyptian) culture, yoga, and language, and her lifelong cultural and spiritual immersion in African/Afro-Caribbean Orisha/Orixa traditions. In 2006, Imakhu was initiated as a Bantu nganga (water healer) and peacemaker by Michael Ortiz Hill and Mandaza Kandemwa. She has since baptized and initiated many across the country into the water tradition, and gives classes to help people learn the sacred Khametic Water Mysteries. A popular workshop presenter, performer, scholar, and podcaster, Queen Mother Imakhu continues to build bridges of peace. Her latest book is, "Meru Nedjem (Sweet Waters): The Khametic Path of Creating Renewal After Trauma."
Over the years, Queen Mother has served the greater Newark community by offering free yoga and meditation, spiritual and business mentoring to the city's underground artists, and pandemic food distribution to Newark artists, residents, and our neighbors-with-no-addresses. Queen Mother Imakhu was honored by the Newark Interfaith Alliance for her ongoing commitment to community service. She is also a of the NAACP.
The dove is a dear symbol to Queen Mother Imakhu. Her previously known African name was Eyele Yetunde. In Yoruba, Eyele means dove. The dove is sacred to the orishas Obatala/Oxala and Yemoja. (Yetunde means Mother has returned.) In Umbanda tradition the Pomba Gira is the sacred messenger dove. The dove in Christianity is Holy Spirit, Peace. Imakhu is minister. Elaine is heavenly light. Lloyd is holy, sacred. The dove serves as a reminder of the calling over her life as a storyteller, musician, peacemaker, minister, and motivator.
On a personal note, Queen Mother's interest in history and culture are close to home. Her father, Tommie Lloyd, was the first African American accepted into the NJ Tool & Die Association. Her father was Gullah Geechee from South Carolina. Imakhu’s mother, Jean Whitley Lloyd-Mayfield, was the first African American Girl Scout Leader in Kenilworth, NJ – at a time when crosses were still being burned. In the 1600’s, Virginia manumission laws were changed because her maternal ancestors were left land by their slaveholder in his will – something unheard of at that time. They chose, instead, not to take residence. This was the side of the family that ultimately became Artis (originally Ortiz). Imakhu lectures on the rich history of her family, which is Bantu, Haitian, Dominican, Puerto Rican, Brazilian, Gullah, Melungeon, and Bajan. She has been studying the hidden history of enslaved Afro-Latinx/Hispanic/people of color in the United States.
Photo bt Ken Karnas
Edited by Akeru MultiMedia