Racial Diversity Initiative

Racism in American Speaker Series – January 28 to March 18, 2021

This series consisted of eight presentations about the history and societal impact of racism in America.  Here are summaries, recordings and/or slides for each presentation.  


January 28 – “How We Got Here: The Hidden History of Diversity in America” – Reggie Jackson, Nurturing Diversity Partners. The recording of Reggie Jackson’s presentation was available for two weeks and has timed out. 


February 4 – “From John Brown to Jim Crow” – Brady Henderson, Cream City Law, LLC | Summary:  The abolitionist John Brown became a symbol of the bloody and protracted fight to abolish legal slavery in America.  Within months of that fight being won, “Jim Crow” became a symbol for an even more violent and long lived fight to keep people of color poor and powerless afterwards. This presentation explores how our nation swung from the victory of emancipation to the depths of institutional racism–how slavery became segregation, how the “Jim Crow South” was joined by the “Jim Crow North,” and the profound impacts it still has on our communities today.

Presentation:  CLICK HERE

Slides: CLICK HERE


February 11 – “Employment Barriers Faced by Diverse Communities” – Maria E. Flores, Outreach and Education Manager, EEOC | Summary:  The presentation covers a wide range of EEO issues faced by diverse communities, including discriminatory language policies, gender issues faced by women, hire/selection criteria which may disadvantage applicants, with real case stories, statistics, and studies.  We were not allowed to record Ms. Flores’ presentation. 


February 18 – “The Educational Debt We Owe to All of Our Children” – Dr. Demond Means, Consultant to Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction | Summary:  The presentation discusses the institutional challenges that economically disadvantaged, Black and Brown students face when attending school and how (1) educators, (2) families and caregivers, and (3) community members can remove the legacy barriers preventing all of our students from reaching their full promise as learners and citizens. 

Presentation:  CLICK HERE

Slides: CLICK HERE


February 25 – ”Restorative Health Equity and Reparations: The Intersection” – ​Curtis Marshall, Public Health Consultant | Summary: Health equity often focuses on reducing overall health disparities, ignoring how institutionalized policies and structural racism impact health outcomes for Black families. The concept of restorative health equity is that, in order to truly address and close health disparities and financial gaps, material and social resources must be commensurate with need. This presentation will provide an overview of restorative health equity, the ways slavery and racism have laid the foundation for poor health for Black families in the United States and how a comprehensive plan for reparations can provide Black families with the resources and ability to live healthy lives. 

Presentation:  CLICK HERE

Slides: CLICK HERE


March 4 – “Fair Housing: Building Inclusive Communities for Everyone” and “Milwaukee’s Eviction Crisis” Erika L. Sanders, Director – Program Services, Metropolitan Milwaukee Fair Housing Council | Summary: The presentation addresses fair housing rights, the forms of unlawful discrimination that still occur in our housing markets and ways to build more equitable, inclusive communities. We were not allowed to record Ms. Sanders’ presentation; however, she provided this link to her redlining maps:   https://dsl.richmond.edu/panorama/.  

Raphael Ramos, Director – Eviction Defense Project, Legal Action of Wisconsin | Summary: The presentation discusses the causes, impacts and scope of the eviction crisis facing Milwaukee’s minority communities.

Presentation:  CLICK HERE

Slides: CLICK HERE


March 11 – “Race and the Criminal Justice System” – Brady Henderson, Cream City Law, LLC | Summary: The presentation describes the ways in which the structure, economics, policies and practices of our criminal justice system discriminate against minorities and impact their communities. 

Presentation:  CLICK HERE

Slides and Resources: CLICK HERE


March 18 – “Christianity and Race” – Rev. Dr. Matt Hadley, Sr. Pastor of United Methodist Church of Whitefish Bay, and Rev. Dan Dick, Assistant to the Bishop, Wisconsin Conference of the United Methodist Church | Summary:  The presentation discusses the history of racism in the church in America, the Social Principles stance on racism in the United Methodist Church, Bishop Hee-Soo Jung’s “Dismantling Racism” initiative, and the different views and responses to racism in The United Methodist Church in the Northern and Southern hemispheres.

Presentation: CLICK HERE

Slides: CLICK HERE

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