It is with tremendous sadness that we inform you that Deborah Torraine died last Friday night at United Hospital during emergency heart surgery.
Deborah had volunteered for the Saint Paul Almanac as a community editor, hosted reading events, authored short stories for publication and, in February 2011, took on a new role as Director of Community Engagement.
The graduate of University of California Santa Cruz had received training via the Wellstone Fellowship for Social Justice and did graduate coursework at Metropolitan State University in Developing Community. Deborah’s work as a community liaison, prior to joining the Almanac, provided her with diverse professional affiliations that included organizations like Aurora/St. Anthony Neighborhood Development Corporation, Environmental Justice Advocates of Minnesota, AfroEco, the arts community and the Somali and Southeast Asian communities.
Deborah was a writer, artist, and grassroots activist who supported so many important causes connected to the land, art, culture, and a good quality of life for all people. She often called herself a “cultural worker” and described the role as “working together in community to get important work done.”
We are going to dedicate this Monday’s Lowertown Reading Jam at 7 p.m. at the Black Dog Cafe to Deborah Torraine.
Deborah was very loved and will be dearly missed. She was an incredible force for good in the world.
The Saint Paul Neighborhood Network (SPNN), featured Deborah Torraine in an April 2011 profile: