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“Your return on leadership depends on your investment in relationships.”

 – Dr. Talaya L. Tolefree

The word “Koinonia” means to engage in the most productive and meaningful relationships possible. The core belief of Koinonia Leadership Academy is that “your return on leadership depends on your investment in relationships.” We believe meaningful relationships can transform ordinary people into effective leaders. They understand that it takes a variety of life experiences, personalities and skill-sets to cultivate an ethos that meets the diverse needs of individuals, teams, communities and the world. We believe it is imperative for effective leaders to invest time in strengthening relationships to better understand the needs of those they serve. Leading through strengths-based relationships will empower leaders with the knowledge of what matters most to those they serve, thus equipping leaders with an edge to make informative decisions to transform the status quo to position their teams and communities to lead more effectively.

“Remember and help America remember that the fellowship of human beings is more important than the fellowship of race and class and gender in a democratic society.”

-Dr. Marian Wright Edelman

Faith Based

We provide leadership and relationship building strategies for ministry leaders and their teams.



We provide technical assistance for school based restorative practices through consulting, coaching, training and implementation.


We provide capacity building strategies for team and organizational effectiveness.

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About Us


Leadership Development

We engage leaders with strategies and tools to develop transformative leadership teams.

Transformative Coaching

We empower leaders to build leadership capacity within their organizations through our transformative coaching sessions. 

Restorative Practices 

We partner with educational systems to transform school culture and climate by implementing Restorative Practices. 

Services Offered


“Your return on leadership depends on your investment in relationships.”

 – Dr. Talaya L. Tolefree

Dr. Talaya L. Tolefree has committed over 20 years of her life to community program development, providing educational leadership to children, parents and educators in a variety of pre-k through post-secondary settings. Dr. Tolefree recently authored her first children’s books "Grandma Sankofa's House and Creative Crown Turn That Frown Upside Down! I Love My Natural Hair." She is the Founder and Executive Director of Empowered To Be Me! girls leadership program and Founder and CEO of Koinonia Leadership Academy, LLC where she uses her Restorative Practices Engagement Circle Framework (Tolefree, 2015) to implement Restorative Practices in faith-based organizations, schools and community. Dr. Tolefree is a Restorative Practices researcher and is involved in a number of Restorative Practices initiatives focusing on healing, social, racial and educational justice. Dr. Tolefree believes that education is a human right and should be experienced in healthy and safe environments that are inclusive of all.

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Dr. Tolefree’s leadership trainings were power packed with information presented in a loving and eye-opening approach. The experience
was self-reflective and transformational.
We need more! 


—  Darrell Gillespie, Senior Pastor
Proverbs Christian Fellowship

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