Alice Faye Williams
January 10, 1947
|Died||May 2, 2016 69) (aged|
Sausalito, California, U.S.
|Political party||Black Panther|
(m. 1968;div. 1971)
(m. 1975;div. 1982)
|Children||2, including Tupac Shakur|
Afeni Shakur Davis (born Alice Faye Williams; January 10, 1947 – May 2, 2016) was an American political activist and member of the Black Panther Party.  Shakur was the mother of rapper Tupac Shakur and the executor of his estate. She founded the Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation and also served as the CEO of Amaru Entertainment, Inc., a record and film production company she founded.
Afeni Shakur was born Alice Faye Williams on January 10, 1947, in Lumberton, North Carolina.  She had an older sister, Gloria "Glo" Jean.  She had a troubled beginning and grew up resenting her father, a truck driver who was abusive towards her mother.  At the age of eleven in 1958, Williams and her sister moved to the South Bronx with their mother, a factory worker.  
Williams attended Benjamin Franklin Junior High School in the Bronx, where she demonstrated above average reading ability and her grades qualified her for honors.  She wrote for the school newspaper, The Franklin Flash, and in the ninth grade, won a journalism award for which she received congratulations from Mayor Robert F. Wagner.  In 1962, Williams passed the qualifying examinations for the Bronx High School of Science and High School of Performing Arts in Manhattan.   She chose the latter because she felt performers and actors were free spirited.  However, Williams couldn't afford the school supplies and she felt like an outcast at the school, so she dropped out after one term.  She began drifting and became member of a Bronx street gang called the Disciples. 
She briefly worked a postal job, becoming one of the first women mail carriers in New York. 
After hearing Bobby Seale speak, Williams joined the Black Panther Party when they opened an office in Harlem in 1968.  There she met Lumumba Shakur, a Sunni Muslim, whom she married in November 1968.  Following their marriage, she changed her name to Afeni Shakur.   She became a section leader of the Harlem chapter and a mentor to new members such as Jamal Joseph.  
In April 1969, she and twenty other Black Panthers were arrested and charged with several counts of conspiracy to bomb police stations and other public places in New York.  Bail was set at $100,000 (equivalent to $738,929in 2021) for each of the 21 suspects. The Black Panthers decided to raise bail money for Joseph and Shakur first, so those two could work on raising bail for the remaining 19 members.   The pre-trial started in February 1970 and the actual trial commenced on September 8, 1970.  Charges brought against her and the other members of the Black Panther Party were attempted murder, conspiracy to commit murder, conspiracy to bomb buildings, and conspiracy.  Shakur represented herself at trial, interviewing several witnesses and arguing in court.  In her autobiography, Shakur wrote, "I was young. I was arrogant. And I was brilliant in court... because I thought this was the last time I could speak. The last time before they locked me up forever... I was writing my own obituary."  Her statements and questioning of the government infiltrators during the trial are credited with helping to expose the FBI's corruption and help save the Panther 21. 
One of the people Shakur cross-examined was Ralph White, a "suspect" who had in fact, infiltrated the Black Panthers while working as an undercover policeman.  Shakur had repeatedly denounced White as a cop because he was "a hothead ... too arrogant for a Panther."  White testified it was retaliation for refusing to hire her to work in the Harlem Panther office.  [ clarification needed ] Shakur got White to admit under oath that he and two other agents had organized most of the unlawful activities. "She asked him if he'd ever seen her carry a gun or kill anyone or bomb anything and he answered no, no, no. Then she asked if he'd seen her doing Panther organizing in a school and a hospital and on the streets and he answered, yes, yes, yes." 
She and the others in the "Panther 21" were acquitted in May 1971 after an eight-month trial.  Altogether, Afeni Shakur spent two years in the New York Women's House of Detention before being acquitted.  While in the House of Detention, Shakur says, she "began relating to the gay sisters in jail beginning to understand their oppression, their anger and the strength in them and in all gay people."  After being released, she participated in a workshop organized by the Gay Liberation Front at the Revolutionary People's Constitutional Convention in 1970, and she continued to advocate against homophobia in the Black Panthers. 
After Shakur was acquitted, she did not return to the Black Panther Party. On June 16, 1971, she gave birth to her son, Lesane Parish Crooks, who was later renamed Tupac Amaru Shakur.   Shakur's marriage fell apart when it was discovered that Lumumba was not the biological father of her son. His biological father is Billy Garland. Black Panther Party member Geronimo Pratt was her son's godfather. 
In 1975, Shakur married Mutulu Shakur and had their daughter, Sekyiwa Shakur. They got divorced in 1982. Shakur worked as a paralegal for a decade before descending into a crack cocaine addiction in the early 1980s.  
Shakur moved her family to Baltimore, Maryland in 1984. She raised her children through welfare because she could not keep a job.  She relocated to Marin County in California to manage her drug use.  In 1989, her son left home because of her. The two later reconciled.  She overcame her addiction after she moved back to New York in 1991 and started Narcotics Anonymous meetings.  Nine months into her recovery program, Tupac sent her $5,000 even though their relationship was strained. 
Although Tupac struggled in his relationship with his mother, he paid tribute to her in his song "Dear Mama".  In the song, he reflects on his childhood, acknowledges Afeni's troubles with addiction, and expresses his love for her: "You always was committed, A poor single mother on welfare, tell me how you did it. There's no way I can pay you back, But the plan is to show you that I understand: you are appreciated." 
After Tupac died in Las Vegas on September 13, 1996, she had him cremated the next day.  His close friends, actresses Jada Pinkett and Jasmine Guy, provided emotional support for Shakur and advised her to hire lawyers to sort out Tupac's assets.  Before Tupac died, he arranged for her to receive $16,000 monthly and purchased a home for her in Stone Mountain, Georgia. 
In 2004, Shakur released her biography, Afeni Shakur: Evolution of a Revolutionary.  In her biography, which was written by Jasmine Guy, Shakur reflected on her childhood experiences and her upbringing as well as her involvement in the Black Panther Party. In the book, she stated that the party educated and directed her to channel her anger.  She described her experiences in jail and how together with other inmates, they organized a bail fund to get some of the women out of jail. 
Shakur traveled across the U.S., making guest appearances and delivering lectures. On February 6, 2009, she gave the keynote address for Vanderbilt University's Commemoration for Black History Month.  She shared with people her experiences and ways in which to overcome loss. 
In 2010, Shakur was arrested for possessing marijuana in Lumberton, North Carolina. 
Shakur later married to Gust Davis. 
Shakur died at a hospital in Greenbrae, California, at around 10:28 p.m. on May 2, 2016, after going into cardiac arrest at her home earlier in the evening; she was 69.     Her body was cremated. 
Following Tupac's death, his biological father Billy Garland attempted to inherit half of his estate, which Shakur opposed because Garland was an "absentee father who contributed little to Tupac's upbringing."  A judge denied his claim. 
Exactly one year after Tupac's death, with revenue from his albums released posthumously, Shakur founded the Georgia-based Tupac Amaru Shakur Foundation to provide art programs for young people and the Tupac Amaru Shakur Center for the Arts in Stone Mountain, Georgia. 
In 1997, she founded Amaru Entertainment, a holding company for all of Tupac's unreleased material.  She also launched a fashion clothing line, Makaveli Branded in 2003. 
Shakur was reportedly in federal court on July 20, 2007, to file an injunction to prevent Death Row Records from selling any unreleased material from Tupac after the company failed to prove that the unreleased songs were not part of its bankruptcy settlement. 
In 2013, Shakur sued Entertainment One claiming they failed to pay Tupac's estate royalties worth seven figures for 2007’s Beginnings: The Lost Tapes. The estate also sued for the ownership of the master recordings for all of Tupac’s unreleased music. A court ruled Entertainment One must pay over six figures for royalties from Shakur's posthumous releases and all the unreleased recordings will go back to the estate. Death Row Records initially owned the rights to his music, which was purchased by Entertainment One in 2006. 
In 2014, Shakur helped create the Broadway musical Holler If Ya Hear Me , which featured Tupac's music. 
Shakur was not involved in the production of All Eyez on Me , a film based on Tupac's life, stating she felt betrayed by her lawyer, who made the deal with the production company Morgan Creek against her wishes. When she learned of the deal, she fired her lawyer, hired new ones, and fought against the contract and production company. She went to court several times, spending millions of dollars, which she stated led to her selling the Tupac Amaru Shakur Center for the Arts, eventually settling for an undisclosed amount of money. 
Shakur set up a trust to control all of Tupac's music rights which assigned music executive Tom Whalley as the executor of his estate following her death in 2016. 
Tupac Amaru Shakur, also known by his stage names 2Pac and Makaveli, was an American rapper and actor. He is widely considered one of the most influential rappers of all time. Shakur is among the best-selling music artists, having sold more than 75 million records worldwide. Much of Shakur's music has been noted for addressing contemporary social issues that plagued inner cities, and he is considered a symbol of activism against inequality.
Tupac: Resurrection is a soundtrack album for the Academy Award-nominated documentary of the same name. It was released on November 14, 2003 by Amaru Entertainment and Interscope Records.
Mutulu Shakur is an American activist and former member of the Black Liberation Army, sentenced to sixty years in prison for his involvement in a 1981 robbery of a Brinks armored truck in which a guard and two police officers were murdered.
Thug Life, Volume I is the only studio album by American hip hop group Thug Life started by American rapper Tupac Shakur (2Pac) and also comprising Big Syke, The Rated R, Macadoshis and Mopreme Shakur, Tupac's stepbrother. It was released on October 11, 1994, through Interscope and Atlantic Records. The album features guest appearances by Y.N.V. and Nate Dogg and production by Warren G, Easy Mo Bee, Big Syke and Stretch.
Amaru Entertainment is a record label founded in 1997 by Afeni Shakur after the death of her son Tupac Amaru Shakur. The label was created to handle the release of Tupac's previously unreleased material, and was given the rights to release recordings made during his time at both Interscope and Death Row Records, as well as the rights to re-release his Interscope albums 2Pacalypse Now, Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z..., Thug Life, Volume I, and Me Against the World. The label initially distributed its releases through Jive Records, beginning with R U Still Down? , but, as of 2011, the releases were being distributed by Interscope. Amaru has released 11 posthumous albums by 2Pac, as well as a documentary, titled Tupac: Resurrection. On May 2, 2016, Afeni Shakur died of a heart attack.
The Tupac Amaru Shakur Center for the Arts, based in Stone Mountain, Georgia, was a performing arts center supported through the Shakur Family Foundation. The Shakur Center's mission was to provide opportunities for young people through the arts, and offered programs such as drama, dance, and creative writing classes. The organization also ran a Performing Arts Day Camp for youth ages twelve to eighteen.
"Dear Mama" is a song by American rapper 2Pac from his third studio album, Me Against the World (1995). It was released on February 21, 1995, as the lead single from the album. The song is a tribute to his mother, Afeni Shakur. In the song, Shakur details his childhood poverty and his mother's addiction to crack cocaine, but argues that his love and deep respect for his mother supersede bad memories. The song became his first top ten on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at number nine. It also topped the Hot Rap Singles chart for five weeks. As of March 2021, the song is certified 3× Platinum by the RIAA.
Stephen T. Owens is a civil trial lawyer in Los Angeles, California with the law firm of Alvarez-Glasman & Colvin. Previously, Owens was a partner in the international law firms of Squire Patton Boggs and Graham & James LLP for approximately 39 years. Owens has represented many major U.S., Japanese, Chinese and other international corporations and financial institutions, including Bridgestone Co., EchoStar/Dish Network, Suzuki Motor Corporation, Toyota Tsusho, China Airlines, Volaris Airlines, Mexicana Airlines, Union Bank, N.A., Bank of Tokyo/Mitsubishi-UFJ, and Knotts Berry Farm, as well as various governmental bodies, including the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Federal Savings and Loan Insurance Corporation, the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco, the California cities of Los Angeles, Pomona, West Covina, Montebello, Buena Park, Chico and Yountville, the County of San Bernardino, city councilmembers of various cities, and municipal redevelopment agencies. In addition to his trial work in the fields of international trade, finance and real estate, he has acted as litigation counsel to a number of noteworthy individuals in the entertainment and sports world, including LeBron James, Big Joe Turner, Rick James, and the Estate of Tupac Shakur.
The Panther 21 is a group of twenty-one Black Panther members who were arrested and accused of planned coordinated bombing and long-range rifle attacks on two police stations and an education office in New York City in 1969, who were all acquitted by a jury in May 1971, after revelations during the trial that police infiltrators played key organising roles.
Jamal Joseph is an American writer, director, producer, poet, activist, and educator. Joseph was a member of the Black Panther Party and the Black Liberation Army. He was prosecuted as one of the Panther 21. He spent six years incarcerated at Leavenworth Penitentiary.
Tupac Shakur Legacy is an official interactive biography of Tupac Shakur released on August 16, 2006. The author of the book is Jamal Joseph, a friend of the Shakur family, Shakur's godfather, and a former Black Panther Party member, now a professor of film at Columbia University. The book is published by Atria Books a division of Simon & Schuster. It features unseen family photographs, intimate stories, and over 20 removable reproductions of his handwritten song lyrics, contracts, scripts, poetry, and other personal papers.
"One Day at a Time (Em's Version)" is a song by American rapper Tupac from the 2003 soundtrack album Tupac: Resurrection: The Original Soundtrack. The track is American rapper Eminem's take on the 1996 original, which features both Shakur and Spice 1. Eminem's version features vocals from both himself and Outlawz. The song was released as a 12" promo single in 2004, no official music video was ever created. It charted at #80 on The Billboard Hot 100 and number 55 in the RNB chart and 22 in rap singles. It also peaked at 134 in the UK.
"Holler If Ya Hear Me" is a song by American rapper 2Pac from his second solo studio album, Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z. (1993). It was released on February 4, 1993 as the album's lead single. The track, which samples "Do It Any Way You Wanna" People's Choice and Public Enemy's "Rebel Without a Pause", is an anthem of resistance. Frustrations with black poverty, police injustice, and Tupac's perceived persecution from political figure Dan Quayle fuel the majority of the track. The song is autobiographical in nature, referring to various traumas experienced by Tupac himself, and the editor of Vibe was quoted in Time magazine as stating that the song struck a chord with a large section of disaffected youth.
Beginnings: The Lost Tapes 1988–1991 is a posthumous album by American rapper 2Pac, released on June 12, 2007 by Koch Records. The album was originally released on April 18, 2000, in bootleg form under the title The Lost Tapes: Circa 1989, but the selling was quickly halted due to copyright infringement.
Yafeu Akiyele Fula, better known by his stage name Yaki Kadafi, was an American rapper and a founder and member of the hip hop groups Outlawz and Dramacydal.
The Rose That Grew from Concrete (1999) is a collection of poetry written between 1989 and 1991 by Tupac Shakur, published by Pocket Books through its MTV Books imprint. A preface was written by Shakur's mother Afeni Shakur, a foreword by Nikki Giovanni and an introduction by his manager, Leila Steinberg.
"Panther Power" is a song by Tupac Shakur featuring Ray Luv, and it is one of the earliest recordings by Tupac. The song was produced by the Digital Underground and Strictly Dope member Chopmaster J. The song was posthumously released on the album Tupac: Resurrection and Beginnings: The Lost Tapes 1988–1991. The song is a tribute to the Black Panther Party and his mother, Afeni Shakur, when she was a member of the Black Panther Party. The song deals with slavery, Black nationalism and racism.
Karolyn Ali was an American film and music video producer, best known for her documentary Tupac: Resurrection. She started her career in the music industry, producing music and commercials. Ali worked for over 30 years on films, documentaries, music videos and commercials.
All Eyez on Me is a 2017 American biographical drama film about the African-American rapper Tupac Shakur, directed by Benny Boom and written by Jeremy Haft, Eddie Gonzalez, and Steven Bagatourian. Titled after Shakur's 1996 fourth studio album as well as the song of the same name, the film stars Demetrius Shipp Jr. as Shakur with Kat Graham, Lauren Cohan, Hill Harper, and Danai Gurira in supporting roles, with Jamal Woolard reprising his role as Christopher "The Notorious B.I.G." Wallace from Notorious (2009).
Dina LaPolt is an entertainment lawyer and artist rights advocate based in Los Angeles, California. After an early career in the music industry, she became an entertainment lawyer in 1997. She is the founder and owner of LaPolt Law.