Pre-Convening to Upswell

On November 12th, 2019 join Equity in the Center (EiC) and Upswell attendees in Chicago for a day-long, deep dive into how to build a Race Equity Culture.


Join Equity in the Center (EiC) and Upswell attendees on November 12th in Chicago for a day-long, deep dive into how to build a Race Equity Culture. Plenary sessions and workshops will focus on how to operationalize race equity, highlighting best practices from EiC’s Awake to Woke to Work: Building a Race Equity Culture publication.

Speakers include racial equity thought leaders and practitioners, as well as nonprofit and philanthropy executives leading race equity transformation initiatives. Workshops will explore issues ranging from racial healing and allyship strategies that support people of color to building successful partnerships with equity consultants and cross-functional operationalization of race equity.

Convening & Registration Information

This EiC gathering is a pre-convening to Independent Sector’s Upswell, and you can include it in your Upswell registration via this link.

Stand-alone registration for the one-day EiC convening is available via EventBrite for $425.

Hotel Room Discount: Click here to book a hotel room at the Upswell rate of $269/night.

If you have any questions, please reach out to EiC Associate Director Andrew Plumley ([email protected]), or Event Planner Ana Estrada Daniels ([email protected]).

Convening Sponsors


Learn more about how you can become a sponsor for the Pre-Convening to Upswell here.

Agenda for EiC Pre-Convening to Upswell

November 12, 2019

8:30am to 9:00amRegistration and Breakfast
9:00am to 9:30amInvocation & WelcomeKerrien Suarez, Executive Director, Equity in the Center
Andrew Plumley, Associate Director, Equity in the Center
9:30am to 11:00amOpening PlenaryRx Racial Healing: A Context for Truth, Racial Healing and TransformationGail Christopher, President & Founder, Ntianu Garden: Center for Healing and Nature
11:00am to 11:15amBreak
11:15am to 12:45pmConcurrent Sessions
Racial Healing Circle: Introduction to the Rx Racial Healing Process (Pre-Registration Required)Mee Moua, Principal & Founder, InterDependent Group, LLC
Chicago Racial Healing Circle: Centering Indigenous and African Voices (Invitation Only)José Rico, Director, Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation Greater Chicago, Woods Fund Chicago
Building a Race Equity Culture in Nonprofit and Philanthropic OrganizationsAmanda Misiko Andere, CEO, Funders Together to End Homelessness
Antoine Andrews, Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer, Year Up
John Bouman, President, Shriver Center on Poverty Law
Caronina Grimble, Program Officer, Woods Fund Chicago
Lucy Mayo, Independent Consultant/Former Senior Vice President of Organizational Development, Demos
Hilary Meyer, Chief Innovation & Impact Officer, SAGE
Steve Lew, Project Director, CompassPoint
Beyond Commitment: Four Steps to Get You Started Building a Race Equity CultureDesiree Adaway, Principal, The Adaway Group
Ericka Hines, Principal, Every Level Leadership
Jessica Fish, Lead Consultant, The Adaway Group
12:45pm to 1:00pmBreak
1:00pm to 2:45pmLunch PlenaryClosing the Racial Leadership Gap & Building a Race Equity Culture in Chicago Organizations and the Regional EcosystemNiketa Brar, Chicago United for Equity
Melissa Connelly, CEO, OneGoal
Christopher Goins, Chief Equity Officer, Thrive Chicago
Michelle Morales, President, Woods Fund Chicago
Angelique Power, President, The Field Foundation of Illinois
Nina Sanchez, Executive Director, Enrich Chicago
Carmita Semaan, Founder & President, The Surge Institute
2:45pm to 3:00pmBreak
3:00pm to 4:45pmConcurrent Sessions
The Blanket ExerciseGina Jackson, Program Director, Native Americans in Philanthropy
Vance Blackfox, Consultant, Other+Wise
White Allyship TrainingWhitney Parnell, CEO & Co-Founder, Service Never Sleeps
What Would an Equity Consultant Do: Building Capacity for a Race Equity CultureEric Polite II, Chief Transformation Officer, Eric Polite & Associates
Frances Kunreuther, Building Movement Project
Jessica Vasquez Torres, CrossRoads Institute
Maegan Scott, Principal, Wayfinding Partners
McKensie Mack, Anti-Oppression Consultant, Coach & Facilitator
4:45pm to 5:00pmBreak
5:00pm to 6:30pm"Ignite Talks" & ReceptionHors d’oeuvres and cocktails will be served while EiC partners share brief, TED-style “Ignite Talks” on new equity resources.

About Equity in the Center

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.

To learn more about Equity in the Center, watch the “Why EiC?” video below on our work and impact. You can view videos of our previous convenings, the 2018 EiC Summit and May 2019 EiC Convening, via our Facebook page.

Why Equity in the Center? from Buoyant Partners on Vimeo.

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