Following our morning virtual event with keynote speaker Arthur Brooks, and the panel discussion among a diverse group of prominent mayors, all attendees are invited to participate in a facilitated conversation over the lunch hour on Monday, December 14th, 12-1 p.m. EST. Attendees may choose to participate in one of two conversation topics:
Terrance Sullivan, J.D. and OJ Oleka, Ph.D. will lead a discussion on what it means to be anti-racist and how we all have a part in creating a more anti-racist society through a policy lens and bipartisan perspective. Representing opposite sides of the political spectrum, the two came together in the wake of the tragic deaths of Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, and Ahmaud Arbery to found AntiRacism KY, a bipartisan coalition focused on rooting out any vestige of institutional racism in state and local government policy.
OJ Oleka is a Republican who is now president of the Association of Independent Kentucky Colleges and Universities, advocating for public policy in higher education. Democrat Terrance Sullivan is executive director of the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights, the state agency charged with protecting the civil rights of Kentucky citizens. Their work in building the coalition is designed to uplift the voices of everyone seeking change to collectively identify what can be done to end institutional racism in Kentucky.
"Hatred, which could destroy so much, never failed to destroy the man who hated and this was an immutable law." - James Baldwin, Notes of a Native Son
The recent election has brought to a head hostility and animosity that many Americans hold toward fellow Americans with differing political views. Braver Angels is a nonpartisan nonprofit focused on uniting red and blue Americans in a working alliance to depolarize America. In this session facilitated by lead organizer Donna Murphy, participants will discuss why we should strive for connection with those who see politics differently, knowing that it will be hard. We will also come up with action steps on how to reduce contempt for and demonization of those we disagree with politically.
Donna Nielsen Murphy develops nationwide initiatives for Braver Angels. She has been an economist in both the public and private sector, most recently at the U.S. State Department, and is the author of three books.