400 Years of Inequality: Breaking the Cycle of Systemic Racism
Friday, October 18, 2019
8:30 a.m.–2:30 p.m.
breakfast (doors open), 8 a.m.
72 East Concord Street
Services for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing People Provided
Cohosted with the Howard Thurman Center for Common Ground, the Museum of African American History, and the Activist Lab
A History of Resistance
Who’s at the Table?
Bold Ideas to Close Wealth Gaps
This day is a part of a national movement by schools of public health to engage in the observance of “400 Years of Inequality,” marking 400 years since a group of 20 Africans were first sold in bondage in Jamestown, Virginia. This Dean’s Symposium aims to use this anniversary to discuss how we can disrupt systemic racism, with forward-looking and solution-driven discussions.
8:00 a.m. – 8:30 a.m.
BREAKFAST AND INFORMAL GREETINGS
8:30 a.m. – 8:35 a.m.
Dean and Robert A. Knox Professor, Boston University School of Public Health
Associate Dean for Public Health Practice and Associate Professor of Community Health Sciences, Boston University School of Public Health
8:35 a.m. – 8:45 a.m.
A HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE
Executive Director, Museum of African American History
Rivero has brought energy to the Museum’s work to expand the American story. Its scholarship, storytelling and collection are helping organizations and people bridge difference to see their common contributions to developing the American democracy we recognize today. The Musem of African American History has created a well-received public program series under her direction, Race in the Public Dialogue to focus on current issues. The Museum mounted a critically noted exhibit Frederick Douglass: The Most Photographed American of the Nineteenth Century, and has seen visitation rise. In September, 2018 the Museum launched a national Book Award with a $25,000 prize to bring notice to scholars working in the field of African American history. The Nantucket site overcame racial vandalism in March, 2018 to emerge this year in the final stages of a major restoration project that will make this important piece of Massachusetts’ abolition history more widely known. Working with partners, the Museum is creating programs to support corporations and organizations interested in bridging difference, and continues its strong educational work with teachers and faculty.
Rivero began her career in public broadcasting in 1970 at WGBH, where she produced public affairs television programming for the next five years. She returned to Boston in 1989 to head WGBH Radio and later as VP and General Manager for WGBH Radio and Television, she oversaw programming, digital, marketing, and administration. Among notable work, Rivero brought new radio stations online for Boston, Cape Cod and Martha’s Vineyard, launched the national daily radio news program The World, re-established the national television cable service WORLD, developed the digital online service Forum Network and created a significant set of community partnerships including expanding the Celtic Soujourn radio franchise to a larger live stage audience.
Marita Rivero is a recipient of the Pinnacle Award from the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce, The MWPC Abigail Adams Tribute Award, the YWCA Women Achievers Award among other noteworthy community and professional awards. She has numerous production awards including Peabody and Emmy Awards for her project Africans in America, a History of Slavery. She served on the NPR Board, as Board Chair of Bunker Hill Community College, and is now serving on the Bunker Hill Community College Foundation Board. Rivero recently stepped down as Board Chair of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. She joined the Board of the Greater Boston Convention and Visitors Bureau in 2019.
8:45 a.m. – 9:15 a.m.
Cornell William Brooks
Professor of the Practice of Public Leadership and Social Justice, Harvard Kennedy School
Brooks was most recently visiting professor of social ethics, law, and justice movements at Boston University’s School of Law and School of Theology. He was a visiting fellow and director of the Campaign and Advocacy Program at the Kennedy School’s Institute of Politics in 2017. Brooks served as the 18th president of the NAACP from 2014 to 2017. Under his leadership, the NAACP secured 12 significant legal victories, including laying the groundwork for the first statewide legal challenge to prison-based gerrymandering. He also reinvigorated the activist social justice heritage of the NAACP, dramatically increasing membership, particularly online and among millennials. Among the many demonstrations from Ferguson to Flint during his tenure, he conceived and led “America’s Journey for Justice” march from Selma, Alabama to Washington, D.C., over 40 days and 1000 miles.
Prior to leading the NAACP, Brooks was president and CEO of the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice, where he led the passage of pioneering criminal justice reform and housing legislation, six bills in less than five years. He also served as senior counsel and acting director of the Office of Communications Business Opportunities at the Federal Communications Commission, executive director of the Fair Housing Council of Greater Washington, and a trial attorney at both the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and the U.S. Department of Justice. Brooks served as judicial clerk for the Chief Judge Sam J. Ervin, III, on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.
Brooks holds a J.D. from Yale Law School, where he was a senior editor of the Yale Law Journal and member of the Yale Law and Policy Review, and a Master of Divinity from Boston University’s School of Theology, where he was a Martin Luther King, Jr. Scholar. Brooks has a B.A. from Jackson State University. He is the recipient of several honorary doctorates including: Boston University, Drexel University, Saint Peter’s University and Payne Theological Seminary as well as the highest alumni awards from Boston University and Boston University School of Theology. Brooks is a fourth-generation ordained minister in the African Methodist Episcopal Church.
9:15 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.
TOPIC ONE: HOUSING
Naa Oyo A. Kwate
Associate Professor of Africana Studies, Associate Professor of Human Ecology, Rutgers University
Senior Case Manager, So Others Might Eat (SOME)
sade adeeyo is a mental health clinician dedicated to the wellbeing, care coordination, and recovery of vulnerable communities. Formerly a researcher of the social determinants of health, housing and youth development at the Urban Institute, she focused on building multigenerational, place-based interventions in public housing communities. Before joining the Urban Institute, she worked at the Black Women’s Health Imperative and has consistently held positions that advocate for equitable public health and the housing stability of women and communities of color. Currently, she works at a supportive housing agency called So Others Might Eat (SOME, Inc.) in service to underhoused families.
She holds a BA in comparative women’s studies with a minor in public health from her beloved alma mater Spelman College, an MA in public policy with a concentration in women’s studies from the George Washington University, and is completing her second master’s degree in mental health counseling. In all she is working towards a vision of more equitable, inclusive cities—particularly in DC.
Professor, Vanderbilt, Peabody College
In the 12-site Family Options study, she and colleagues showed that offering long-term rental subsidies to families in homeless shelters not only ends homelessness for most but has radiating benefits for parents and children and reduces problems like substance abuse, domestic violence, and psychological distress that can sometimes cause homelessness. Earlier studies showed that a housing first strategy of offering housing without preconditions and with voluntary services ends homelessness for individuals with serious mental illnesses.
With her students, Beth has helped New York City develop tools to direct homeless prevention services available through the HomeBase program away from the “worthy poor” and to the people most likely to become homeless without them.
Beth is a past president of the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues and the Society for Community Research and Action and won the award for distinguished contributions to theory and research from the latter group. She serves on the Research Council for the National Alliance to End Homelessness and Nashville’s Homeless Planning Council and co-authored a National Academies report on Housing, Health, and Homelessness. Her book with Jill Khadduri, In the Midst of Plenty: How to Prevent and End Homelessness, is forthcoming.
Managing Director, Prevention Institute
Previously, Sheila was a division manager with the Houston Public Health Department, responsible for strategic partnerships and the Office of Adolescent Health and Injury Prevention, including Houston’s CDC-funded youth violence prevention initiative. With over 30 years of experience in policy analysis, community-level assessment, mobilization and development; as a national trainer; and a CDC Grand Rounds panelist, she has expertise in multi-sector collaboration and youth/family engagement in addressing complex system issues. Sheila holds a BJ in Journalism from the University of Texas and a Master’s Degree in Psychology from the University of Houston at Clear Lake.
Associate Professor in Sociology, African American Studies, Urban and Regional Planning, and Social Work, University of Illinois
Moderator: Harold Cox
Associate Dean for Public Health Practice and Associate Professor of Community Health Sciences
10:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.
10:45 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.
President and CEO, Center for American Progress
11:15 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
TOPIC TWO: EDUCATION
Professor Emeritus, Duke University Sanford School of Public Policy
Dr. James received the AB degree (Psychology and Philosophy) from Talladega College (AL) in 1964, and the PhD degree in Psychology from Washington University in St. Louis, in 1973.
Dr. James was elected to the National Academy of Medicine, of the National Academy of Sciences, in 2000, and to the American Academy of Political and Social Science, in 2016. He has received the following additional awards and honors: the 2001 Abraham Lilienfeld Award from the Epidemiology section of the American Public Health Association (APHA) for career excellence in the teaching of epidemiology; a 2008 Health Policy Investigator Award from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation; the 2013 John Cassel Lecture and Award from the Society for Epidemiologic Research (SER); the 2016 Wade Hampton Frost Lecture and Award from the Epidemiology Section of APHA for career contributions to the field of epidemiology; the 2019 Kenneth Rothman Career Accomplishment Award from SER; and a 2018-2019 fellowship at Stanford University’s Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences.
Dr. James served as an Associate Editor of Ethnicity & Disease (1989-1995) and the American Journal of Public Health (2003-2007). In 2007-08, he served as president of the Society for Epidemiologic Research (SER), the largest professional organization of epidemiologists in North America. In 2008, he was named a Distinguished Alumnus of Washington University in St. Louis.
CEO, EMPLUS LLC; Former President, Florida A&M University
Evjue-Bascom Professor of Law, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Director of Programs, Diversity and Inclusion, Boston University
Alana Anderson is Boston University’s inaugural Director of Programs in the Office of the Associate Provost for Diversity and Inclusion. In her role, Alana works to develop a broad slate of programs that address issues related to gender, race, social class, sexual orientation, nationality, political ideology, disability, and justice among others for faculty, staff, and students. She works collaboratively with key stakeholders across BU and the city to develop creative, expansive programs in accordance with BU’s commitment to diversity and inclusion. Alana has over ten years of experience working in the field of higher education and has previously held leadership roles in student life and diversity and inclusion at Babson College, Bentley University, and MIT. She holds a Doctorate in Higher Education from the Lynch School of Education at Boston College, a Masters of Science in Higher Education from Indiana University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Politics from Brandeis University. Her research examines how black college women perform their race and gender on social media.
Moderator: Yvette Cozier
Assistant Dean for Diversity and Inclusion, Boston University School of Public Health
12:30 p.m. – 12:45 p.m.
400 YEARS: THE MOVEMENT
Associate Dean, Community and Minority Affairs, Columbia Mailman School of Public Health
12:45 p.m. – 1:15 p.m.
1:15 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
ACTIVIST LAB ARTIST IN RESIDENCE: PERFORMANCE AND DIALOGUE
Co-Artistic Director, Cultural Odyssey/Director, THE MEDEA PROJECT/Artist in Residence, Boston University School of Public Health Activist Lab
As the Activist Lab Artist in Residence, Ms. Jones will be conducting workshops, class visits, and a faculty forum, in addition to performing selections from THE MEDEA PROJECT, in addition to her presentation at the Dean’s Symposium – 400 Years of Inequality: Breaking the Cycle of Systemic Racism.
The capstone of her residency, Rhodessa Jones will perform several vignettes from her repertoire to explore and expand on the themes discussed throughout the day and guide an interactive discussion with the audience.