About & Staff

Our Mission

APEDF strives to develop and institutionalize programs to defend the human and civil rights of the African community, and to address the grave disparities in education, health, health care and economic development in the African community.

For over 20 years, we have collected furniture donations from community supporters like you and put them up for sale at our storefront location at 1220 Spruce St. In 2014 we relocated to a remarkable spot at 832 North Broad St. It's a lot more space with the same quality and convenience!

Uhuru Furniture represents the sector of Philadelphia that wants to see genuine change and support sustainable economic development by and for the African community. Supporters contribute to this work by donating furniture, shopping and volunteering. Uhuru Furniture is different than a charity thrift store - 100% of our profits benefit APEDF!

Uhuru Furniture relies on supporters like you to spread the word! Please send this blog to your friends, families and networks and tell people about our FREE furniture donation pick-up.

Please take a moment to check out our volunteer opportunities! They're a great way to network and help make a difference in the African community.


Alison Hoehne

Store Manager

Alison Hoehne
Ali grew up in London, England and came to the U.S. after college. She met the Uhuru Movement in 1978 in San Francisco. She realized she wanted more than anything to participate in black community campaigns for justice and self-determination. England was a major slave trader. She believes this is a way she can work to right that wrong. Ali loves working with the great staff, volunteers and shoppers. She also was part of the team that opened Uhuru Furniture in 1994. In her view, the APEDF mission gets to the root of the disparities in our city and shows the African community how to solve all its problems in a positive way. In her spare time, Ali loves cooking for friends and growing vegetables and flowers.

Ruby Gittelsohn

Marketing Manager

Ruby Gittelsohn
Ruby grew up in Oregon, attended school in NYC and made her living performing comedy on the street in New York and San Francisco for several years in the 1970s. She has been working at Uhuru Furniture both here and in California for 25 years. She wants to contribute to an organization that is actively changing the unjust conditions the black community faces right here. APEDF, Ruby believes, is the grassroots African community leading the way forward to overcome the problems and gives all of us a way to support the community’s right to the same healthy, happy and prosperous life that everyone wants. She is extremely honored to be able to work and volunteer at Uhuru Furniture. Ruby loves nature and natural science, yoga, raw food and riding her bike in all weather. She has a 15lb cat named Poodie who enjoys knocking small, important items off her desk and tearing up furniture.


Ameer Fearrington

Donations Administrator

Ameer grew up in Delaware County, PA. He initially volunteered at Uhuru for the chance to help people while contributing to an organization with a positive mission. He also likes the fact that the store prevents used items from going to waste. He now works at Uhuru Furniture coordinating the donations and managing our relationships with local businesses. In his spare time, Ameer likes reading, drawing, and riding his bicycle.

Ulises Guerrero

Operations Coordinator

Ulises Guerrero
Ulises is originally from Mexico, and joined the Uhuru Furniture operations team in December 2013. Ulises enjoys his position very much because he loves working with furniture, and also because of his passion for the mission of APEDF. In his free time, Ulises enjoys working around his house, mechanics, construction and listening to music.

Alfred "Ali" Hutley

Sales Coordinator

Ali is from Georgia and joined our team in August 2014. Ali likes working for Uhuru because he likes the people and is all for being a part of anything about Black people and people in general. Ali considers himself a jack-of-many-trades. In his spare time, Ali enjoys games, cooking and being with his wife, family & friends.

Tiffany Murphy

National APEDF Representative

Tiffany Murphy
Tiffany is a native of Philadelphia, student, and member of the African People's Education and Defense Fund (APEDF) and the African People's Socialist Party (APSP) for over one year. For Tiffany, the mission of APEDF doesn't just span to service a small sector of a neighborhood, but it looks to tackle major issues that affect communities. Tiffany believes that APEDF responds by providing programming and resources that uplift and empower the African community where traditional assistance may fall short.

Albert Nettles

Operations Team

Albert is from North Philly and had a tough time growing up, but over the years it got better. He learned about Uhuru Furniture from his brother, Hassan. He loves his job and finds it to be fun. He also loves interacting with other people and helping out when he can. Overall, he likes to work and spend quality time.