Emma Peyton Williams grew up in the Seattle area before heading to Ohio to pursue a Bachelor of Arts at Oberlin College, where she majored in Comparative American Studies and Gender, Sexuality, and Feminist Studies. Her studies focused on critical race theory, whiteness, queer theory, surveillance, prisons/policing, families, and motherhood.
During her time in undergrad, Emma worked as an HIV Peer Tester on campus, the college advisor to the Oberlin High School Queers and Allies Club, and a sex educator in both the Seattle Public Schools and the Oberlin Unitarian Universalist Fellowship. During breaks from school, she began interning for the good folks at the NW Network of BTLG Survivors of Abuse and now works as a Research and Policy Consult for their National LGBTQ Institute on Intimate Partner Violence. While studying away in Chicago, she organized with and coordinated research for Black and Pink and worked for the Prison + Neighborhood Arts Project, supporting incarcerated students pursuing Bachelor’s degrees. In Chicago, Emma found the abolitionist community that she now calls home.
In the fall of 2019, Emma returned to Oberlin to complete her degree and wrote her Honors Thesis "Dreaming of Abolitionist Futures, Reconceptualizing Child Welfare: Keeping Kids Safe in the Age of Abolition," which was ultimately awarded Highest Honors. Looking forward, Emma intends to use her research skills, teaching background, and community organizing experience to build community responses to violence that are not reliant on the state.