Tuesday, April 27 | 6-8 p.m.
An open and honest conversation about racial healing, reconciliation and progress. Racial Equity Talks is an ongoing series that aims to have critical conversations around racial equity in the United States.

'The Perils of Anti-Discrimination Laws for Black Professionals'
& 'Black Public Leadership and White Liberalism' are among the many topics we will discuss.


Join us virtually Tuesday, April 27 | 6-8 p.m.

In the 60 years since the wins of the Civil Rights Movement, one of the primary goals has been to increase Blacks in public and private leadership. The belief has been that as black faces rose to higher places and presumably positions of power, that this will allow for the sustaining institutional change needed to combat systematic racism in our society. But what happens when Blacks rise to powerful positions in America? Are they free from oppression? Have they arrived at a place of equality? Or is it a myth?

All across the United States, blacks who have risen to positions of professional leadership, are stating that all that glitters is not gold, and the view from the top can be perilous. What are to be made of these claims? Are black professionals really experiencing racial biases unique to them, or do their challenges simply come with the territory of their high profile positions?

Durham, North Carolina, self-professed - and outwardly perceived - as one of the most diverse, equitable, and inclusive communities in America, is in a battle for its racial soul.

In recent weeks, a public debate has erupted in Durham over the future of County Manager Wendell Davis.

This important town hall seeks to determine two things. First, what is the status of black professionals writ large in a time that demands and professes the importance of diversity, equity and inclusion? Can black professionals find equity in their workplace, or only if they do not anger whites?

Second, is Wendell Davis being wrongly targeted for standing up and suggesting that he and other Black county employees were feeling racial bias from a white county commissioner? Or is this simply a matter of the Black community being too sensitive?

The three Durham organizations, the People's Alliance, the Durham Committee on Affairs of Black People, and the Friends of Durham - that have issued public statements on the plight of County Manager Wendell Davis have been invited to speak on behalf of their claims. We hope that you will join us and make your own decision.

Join in on this public conversation and be sure to engage in our Polis poll.

Engage via Pol.is

Join us Today! Racial Equity Talks Durham

Conversation Topics

The Legal Perspective: The Perils of Anti-Discrimination Laws for Black Professionals.
Host: Dr. Henry C. McKoy, Jr.

Lisa Jones
Corrections Administrator (retired),
Consultant and Re-entry Activist

Attorney Shawna Lemon
Stanek Lemon Crouse + Meeks

Black Public Leadership and White Liberalism: The Case for or against Wendell Davis
LaChaun Anderson Banks
Director, Equity and Inclusion, Harvard University Kennedy School's Ash Center for Democratic Governance

Attorney Shelia Huggins
Chair, Friends of Durham

Antonio Jones, MPA
Chair, Durham Committee on the Affairs of Black People

Millicent Rogers
Co-President, People’s Alliance


Catch what you missed. Use the links below to recap our Racial Equity Talks

Part 1 - The Legal Perspective: The Perils of Anti-Discrimination Laws for Black Professionals

Part 2 - Black Public Leadership and White Liberalism: The Case for or against Wendell Davis

Support from Substantial Media LLC and The Computational Democracy Project (Polis)