Equity in the Center May 2019 Convening: Washington, DC


Equity in the Center (EiC) works to shift mindsets, practices and systems in the social sector to increase race equity. We envision a future where nonprofit and philanthropic organizations are characterized by a Race Equity Culture, meaning they implement and advance race equity internally while advocating for and centering it in work externally.

On May 22nd in downtown DC, EiC will hold a one-day convening  for leaders, including donors, and organizations that want to learn more about how to build a Race Equity Culture. Plenary and working sessions will focus on how equity can be operationalized in organizational culture, highlighting best practices from our Awake to Woke to Work: Building a Race Equity Culture publication.

Following the convening, on May 23rd and 24th, EiC will host Racial Equity Institute’s two-day Phase 1 Foundational Training on Historical and Institutional Racism, which highlights historical factors and data analyses driving structural and organizational racism.

If you have not previously attended an EiC convening, watch the following video, featuring 2018 EiC Summit participants, discussing the value of the experience, our research and network of leaders working to build a Race Equity Culture:


*SOLD OUT* Donor Convening: 8:30am to 11:45am on May 22

8:30am to 10:00am: Introduction to the Race Equity Cycle: How Organizations Shift Culture from “Awake” to “Woke” to “Work”

Overview of EiC’s Awake to Woke to Work: Building a Race Equity Culture research. Emphasis will be on Senior Leadership and Board of Directors levers, and how they connect to the donors’ personal/interpersonal work on race equity and their institutional role as funders.

Kerrien Suarez, Executive Director, Equity in the Center

Andrew Plumley, Associate Director, Equity in the Center

10:15am to 11:45am: Panel Discussion on Race Equity in Donor Relations

Panel of donors/donor organizers, community foundation leaders and board members discussing how personal/interpersonal/institutional issues of race manifest in their work as donors and with donors. There will also be a discussion of the need for increased funding to support race equity capacity building, and how those funds are used by nonprofits.


Tyler Nickerson, First Vice President, Amalgamated Bank

Hafizah Omar, Senior Associate, Living Cities

Henry Posko, President & CEO, Humanim

Tonia Wellons, Vice President, Community Investment, Greater Washington Community Foundation

Jennifer Willsea, Racial Justice Practitioner and Former Board Co-Chair, Resource Generation

Moderator: Kerrien Suarez, Executive Director, Equity in the Center

5/22 Convening Location: National Housing Center, 1201 15th Street NW, Washington, DC 20005

*SOLD OUT* EiC Convening: 10:00am to 5:15pm on May 22

10:00am-11:45am: Concurrent Breakout Sessions

Intersectional Allyship Training

This workshop equips and empowers participants to be effective allies in their areas of privilege. During this fast -paced session, participants will learn engagement techniques that help in dialogue with others, tools to support and center marginalized individuals and communities, and will deepen their knowledge and self-work around injustice. Participants will leave empowered for the ongoing journey of an Allyship lifestyle.


Whitney Parnell, Co-Founder/CEO, Service Never Sleeps

The Racial Healing Circle Experience: Finding Our Collective Humanity

This session will be an introduction to the racial healing circle process, an approach for healing in communities developed by Dr. Gail Christopher, applied during the W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s racial equity grantee convenings over the last decade, and used by communities and organizations as they implement the Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation (TRHT) framework. Participants will experience a racial healing circle and be introduced to how racial healing circles can be effectively utilized in communities and organizations.


Mee Moua,Principal, InterDependent Group, LLC

Andrew Plumley, Associate Director, Equity in the Center  

12:15pm-1:45pm: Plenary Panel

Building a Race Equity Culture: Leading Transformation of Organizational Culture and Practice

Panel of executives discussing their organizations’ transformational process to build a Race Equity Culture. Panelists are EiC advisors, leaders of organizations featured in EiC’s Awake to Woke to Work publication and forthcoming video case studies.


Michael Adams, CEO, SAGE

Allison Conyers, Senior Director, Fellowships, Leadership for Educational Equity

Aisha Young, Senior Director, Strategy & Equity, Meyer Foundation

Moderator: Ericka Hines, Principal, Every Level Leadership

2:00pm-3:30pm: Plenary Panel

What Would an Equity Consultant Do: How Practitioners Support Organizations in Transforming Culture & Practice

Panel of race equity consultants discussing their work supporting organizations, including those featured on the previous panel, in building a Race Equity Culture. Panelists will include consultants whose work is featured in EiC’s Awake to Woke to Work publication and the forthcoming video case studies.


Nicola Chin, Founder, Up With Community

Maggie Potapchuk, President, MP Associates

Tamika Mason, CEO, Building For Mission

Ericka Hines, Principal, Every Level Leadership

Moderator: Kerrien Suarez, Executive Director, Equity in the Center

3:45pm-5:15pm: Concurrent Sessions

Race to Lead: Race and Gender in the Nonprofit Workplace

Building Movement Project will lead a session on their new analysis of Race to Lead data, detailing how race and gender dynamics converge for women of color in the nonprofit workplace.


Ofronama Biu, Senior Research Associate, Building Movement Project

Marissa Graciosa, Senior Advisor, Building Movement Project

Truth & Healing Circle: The Blanket Exercise

Over the past 30 years, Native Americans in Philanthropy (NAIP) has become a powerful and continuously growing network of Native and non-Native nonprofits, tribal communities, foundations and community leaders. Now more than ever is the time to expose the TRUTH about the challenges Native people face in the United States. NAIP also believes it is the right time to highlight and accelerate efforts being made toward HEALING from the historical and intergenerational trauma Native people continue to endure, and is bringing The Movement for Truth and Healing exercise to major intersections of justice and diversity.

The exercise leads people through a powerful educational and transformative exercise first developed by KAIROS in Canada to education during their Healing decade. It is a historical narrative experience that quickly and effectively informs the participants about the truths not often told in our country about Native peoples and why healing work is so critical.

This event will encourage partners in the philanthropic, nonprofit, activist and youth communities to pledge to share The Blanket Exercise in their own spaces nationally in the next year to help create a Cultural Shift and Narrative Change.


Vance Blackfox, Communications Director, Native Americans in Philanthropy

Ben Barge, Senior Associate for Learning and Engagement, National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy

Andrew Plumley, Associate Director, Equity in the Center

5:00pm-6:30pm: Reception (tentative)

*SOLD OUT* Racial Equity Institute Phase I Workshop - Foundational Training on Historical Institutional Racism: 9:00am - 5:00pm on May 23 and 24

Training Description:

Even those who are concerned about racial disparities in all American systems and institutions are challenged in their understanding of how racism remains alive and well, advantaging some while harming others. REI’s two-day Phase I training is designed to develop the capacity of participants to understand racism in its institutional and structural forms. Moving the focus from individual bigotry and bias, the workshop presents a historical, cultural, structural and institutional analysis of racism. With a clear understanding of how institutions, systems, and culture are producing unjust and inequitable outcomes, participants are better equipped to work for change.

Phase I builds the capacity of participants to identify the root causes of disparity and establish goals and strategies based on that deeper understanding. Participants develop an analysis of institutional racism that helps their organization develop a common understanding of the problem and a common language to address it. This paradigm-shifting experience redefines issues of equity as they manifest in systems and institutions today and the attendant actions of individuals who seek to address them.

5/23-24 Training Location: National Housing Center, 15th Street NW, Washington, DC 20005

Note - all registration options are sold out. If you would like to be placed on a waiting list for this event, please email Ana Estrada Daniels at ana@anavo.solutions.
Equity in the Center has a limited number of scholarships available. If interested, please contact EiC's event planner, Ana Daniels, at ana@anavo.solutions. Also reach out to Ana for information on nearby hotels (we do not have room blocks, but can make recommendations). Thank you!

If you are interested in being put on a waiting list for a "SOLD OUT" event, please contact Ana at ana@anavo.solutions.
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