AYA’s 2021 Transition of Power

AYA’s 2021 Transition of Power

a yellow image with an orange-toned portrait of Jo Gleason. She is a white woman looking over her shoulder at the camera. there is a bright sun behind her.

As of December 2020, Jo Gleason stepped down from her role as the Interim President, as planned, and Samira Bechara has taken on the role of President in full.

We are so grateful for Jo’s four years of service with AYA, starting as the Social Media Manager, and stepping up to become the Vice President and acting as president over the past six months. We wish her the best in all of her future endeavors, and are looking forward to continuing to share this community with her!

Samira Bechara is a Lebanese-American astrologer, wine professional, and fundraising organizer based in New Orleans, LA. An early skeptic, she came into astrology in her early twenties, and after once having her chart read she immediately began her studies in earnest. She has studied with Kepler College, Erin Sullivan, the Faculty of Astrological Studies and more, and has attended and volunteered at conferences such as NORWAC, UAC, and NCGR. She was a presenter at QAC 2018 NYC, and teaches through TogetherWExpand as well as independently. She leans Archetypal, and has recently begun delving into the ancient practices of Mundane and Horary astrology. She is excited to help usher in a new paradigm of astrology and support the coming generation of astrological practitioners by serving with AYA!

Follow her on Twitter at @de_les_etoiles and find out more about her on her website here!

Dinner & Drinks 2020 Highlights

Throughout the ups and downs of 2020, one of the constants of the year was the amazing lineup of speakers who joined AYA for Dinner & Drinks. If you’re unfamiliar, Dinner & Drinks is a monthly event where AYA hosts awesome astrologers for a casual, Q&A-like discussions. It’s a great way to stay in touch with the community and learn some nuggets of knowledge along the way!

As we blast into 2021, let’s take a look back at the wonderful D&D’s we had lat year.


Diana Rose Harper kicked off this year’s D&D roster with a discussion on Energetic Hygiene. From visualizing boundaries to carrying vials of salt. Diana hooked us up with plenty of tips for improving our self-care game.


Nina Gryphon stopped by in February to teach us about Astrological Magic. This talk is sure to peak your interest regardless of your experience level. Come to learn about magic, and stay for Nina’s glorious book recommendations.


The #DIGNITYBABES joined AYA in March to discuss the benefits of using essential dignity within astrological work. The discussion was rich and full of insightful voices that you don’t want to miss out on.


April brought us the lovely duo of Chris Reppucci and Elodie St-Ornge Aubut. They discussed their research on experiential work with the lunar mansions. Be sure to catch up on their mesmerizing discoveries!


Becca Tarnas joined us in May to discuss Venus Retrograde from an archetypal perspective. Although the starting point of this conversation was the 2020 Venus Retrograde in Gemini transit, all the revelations in this talk are truly timeless, and this talk is definitely worth revisiting!


We were privileged to have Oak join us in July to present on Out of Bounds Planets & Racial Justice. Using the charts of various activists, Oak demonstrates the power of an out of bounds planet as a revolutionary. This discussion is a must-watch as the call for anti-racism begins to echo in the astrological community.


In August, the knowledgeable Michael Ofek joined us to talk about the magic of Mars. Playing with Fire: Astrological Magic brought us the gem of line: “Astrological magic is the astro-walk.” If you’re looking to move from talking the astro-talk to walking the astro-walk, you won’t want to miss out on this one!


The fabulous Kirah Tabourn stopped by to talk about the ins and outs of being a professional astrologer. Kirah’s tips are great for anyone just starting out on their professional journey as well as those who are a bit more seasoned.


Alice Sparkly Kat joined us in November to talk about client work and counseling skills. This discussion was jammed packed with various things to keep in mind when working with clients. If you’re hoping to improve your skills as a consulting astrologer, this is the D&D for you!

Updates from the Speakers!

We reached out to our 2020 Dinner & Drinks guests, and some of them wanted to share exciting things they’ve been working on and events coming up in the new year. Check it out!

Kelsey Rose Tortorice of #DIGNITYBABES will be teaching an 11-week course on the introduction to natal astrology called Astrology for Yourself. It starts in March 2021, and scholarships and payment plans are available! Click here to learn more, and be sure to register for the info session on Sunday, January 24th, 2021 at 1:00 p.m. Central.

Chris Reppucci & Elodie St-Onge Abut have been continuing their work with the lunar mansions. On Instagram, they post Lunar Dailies- the poetic impressions and information related to the 28 Places of the Moon. You can visit their website to learn more about the lunar zodiac and purchase lecture they’ve given on the subject.

Alice Sparkly Kat has a book coming out! Postcolonial Astrology will be released in May 2021, and you should be very excited about it.

Looking Forward

Thank you to the guests of Dinner & Drinks and to the AYA membership for making 2020’s lineup incredible. Be sure to stayed tuned in 2021 to see our next round of amazing speakers!