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ODEI Winter/Spring 2022 Initiatives

Our events and initiatives are committed to cultivating equity through an intersectional framework.

Join Us for Winter/Spring 2022 events

Monday, January 31

Diversity Lecture Series

-Crossroads: Academic Freedom and (the) Ivory Tower-

Nikole Hannah-Jones

Nikole Hannah-Jones, inaugural Knight Chair in race and journalism at the Cathy Hughes School of Communications at Howard University, is a MacArthur Fellowship recipient for “reshaping national conversations around education reform.” Professor Hannah-Jones is the creator of the New York Times Magazine’s “The 1619 Project,” about the history and lasting legacy of American slavery. Hannah-Jones wrote the project’s introductory essay, which ran under the powerful headline “Our Democracy’s Founding Ideals Were False When They Were Written. Black Americans Have Fought to Make Them True.” The essay earned Hannah-Jones her first Pulitzer Prize for commentary. Nikole was recently named Time’s 100 Most Influential People of 2021. She is also the recipient of a Peabody Award, two George Polk Awards and is a three-time National Magazine Awards winner.

Virtual event begins at 6 p.m. (EST)


Tuesday, February 15

Black History Month [keynote address]

-Midterm Matters: Fostering the emotional stamina to stay engaged-

LaTosha Brown

LaTosha Brown, a 2019 fellow with The Institute of Politics at Harvard University, is an award-winning organizer, philanthropic consultant, political strategist, and jazz singer with over twenty years of experience working in the non-profit and philanthropy sectors on a wide variety of issues related to political empowerment, social justice, economic development, leadership development, wealth creation, and civil rights. Brown is the co-founder of Black Voters Matter. This power-building southern-based civic engagement organization was instrumental in the 2017 Alabama U.S. Senate race and the 2020 U.S. Presidential election.

Virtual event begins at 6 p.m. (EST)


Tuesday, March 15

Women's History Month [keynote address]

-Returning to 'normal' is not an option: Finding healing and meaning in our work-

Sonya Renee Taylor

Sonya Renee Taylor is the founder of The Body is Not An Apology, a digital media, and education company promoting radical self-love and body empowerment as the foundational tool for social justice and global transformation. Sonya’s work as a highly sought-after award-winning performance poet, activist, and transformational leader continues to have a global reach. Sonya is the author of two books, including The Body is Not an Apology: The Power of Radical Self-Love (Berrett-Koehler Feb 2018). In 2016, Sonya was invited to the White House to speak at the forum on the intersection of LGBTQIAA and Disability issues. In 2017, Sonya was awarded the Quixote Foundation’s “Thank You Note, a $25,000 award for leaders and artists working in the field of reproductive justice. 

Virtual event begins at 6:30 p.m. (EST)


Wednesday, April 6

Diversity Lecture Series

-Vibrate Higher: An evening with Talib Kweli -

Talib Kweli

After nearly 20 years of releasing mesmerizing music, Talib Kweli stands as one of the world’s most talented and most accomplished Hip Hop artists. Whether working with Mos Def (Yassin Bey) as one-half of Black Star, partnering with producer Hi-Tek for Reflection Eternal, releasing landmark solo material, or collaborating with Kanye West, Pharrell Williams, Just Blaze, J Dilla, or Madlib, Kweli commands attention by delivering top-tier lyricism, crafting captivating stories and showing the ability to rhyme over virtually any type of instrumental. In 2021, Kweli released his memoir, Vibrate Higher: A Rap Story. A reviewer for the Washington Post wrote, “the push-pull between commercial hip-hop, with its frequent emphasis on empty materialism, and Kweli’s message-driven, occasionally preachy and invariably less popular conscious rap is one of the main preoccupations at the heart of the [book].”

Virtual event begins at 6:00 p.m. (EST)


Friday, April 8

Cultural Competence Institute

-Mission Critical: Interweaving Equity into the Strategic Plan-

Guest Faculty:

Dr. J. Luke Wood

Dr. J. Luke Wood

The Cultural Competence Institute curriculum focuses on implementing organizational change in environments where conscious or non-conscious cognitive behaviors influence prejudice and discrimination. A prerequisite for enrollment in CCI courses includes, but is not limited to, Intergroup Dialogue training, Institute for Healing Racism training, Cultural Intelligence training or training, and experience in other areas related to equity-centered practices.

For more information about the training session and to register visit:

Fall 2021 Initiatives

Several of the events during the fall 2021 semester were recorded. Please visit the GRCC Vimeo channel.

For a list of speakers during the fall 2021 semester, please visit our Fall 2021 Initiatives webpage.