Katoya Palmer (pronoun: she/her)
Katoya Palmer, a passionate community advocate and skilled activist, established ToyBox Consulting in 2008 after launching her professional journey as an Account Executive at Household Finance (now HSBC) in 2001. Committed to eradicating systemic racism and promoting social justice, Katoya has developed ToyBox into a leading consulting firm for non-profits and small businesses led by people of color in industries such as restaurants, professional sports, retail, and entertainment. In 2020, ToyBox Consulting and Management, LLC emerged, offering cutting-edge operations consulting, virtual workplace project management, and strategic planning services.
Katoya's entrepreneurial success story began with overcoming adversity, including dropping out of Arizona State University due to traumatic experiences. She transformed ToyBox from a personal brand into a thriving business, symbolizing her expansive brilliance as a Black woman and community leader. Focused on propelling ToyBox to new heights, Katoya earned her B.S. Marketing Management degree from Western Governors University.
While studying, Katoya worked as a math tutor for Seattle Schools, served in leadership roles within the PTSA at Madrona K-8, and became a Code.org class facilitator, middle school volunteer basketball coach, and Special Education Assistant. In 2016, she joined the YMCA of Greater Seattle's Meredith Mathews branch, progressing from lifeguard to Senior Program Director, while implementing a “learn to swim program” for Black children and providing lifeguard and swim instructor training.
With extensive YMCA experience, Katoya's roles include World YMCA change agent, Drowning Prevention Thought Leader, diversity course instructor, workshop facilitator, and African American employee resource network co-chair. In 2021, she left the YMCA to focus on ToyBox Consulting and Management, LLC.
As a former competitive swimmer and All-American & Junior Olympic Water polo player, Katoya coached the Garfield High School swim team and currently coaches boys Water Polo in Bellevue School District. She has also served on the WGU Alumni Advisory Board and worked with fundraising and equity committees at the Association of Washington Student Leaders.
In 2021, Katoya joined the Board of Directors at SPLASHForward to promote aquatics accessibility and awareness, and the founding board of directors at KEEP (KIENAN ELLIS EDUCATIONAL PROJECT) to prevent inequitable punitive action against BIPOC students. She also launched the Beloved anti-gun violence campaign, fulfilling multiple roles including Creative Director, Line Producer, Graphic Designer, Campaign Manager, writer, and event coordinator.
In February 2022, Katoya was appointed Chief Operating Officer at Community Passageways, focusing on infrastructure, strategic visioning, and leadership development. Later in December 2022, she was elected Vice President of the Board of Directors at The Sophia Way, a non-profit organization committed to ending homelessness for women.
Leveraging her community-first mindset and over 30 years of youth development experience, Katoya Palmer continues to make a significant impact through her activism and dedication to social justice, concentrating on criminal police, education, and housing reform.