Beyond Recovery: Resiliency, Opportunity, Transformation

Advancing Racial Equity and Inclusion to Rebuild Communities Together

We believe the issues unfolding in our nation and communities demand boldness in an effort to push the boundaries of traditional community and economic development thinking and practice.  Prosperity Indiana's 2021 Summit intended to advance racial equity and inclusion to rebuild communities together, and feedback was very positive!
Prosperity Indiana is proud that inclusivity and social justice are at the core of who we are and what we do.

Day One

8:45 AM Virtual Event Opens

8:50 AM Housekeeping and Navigating Remo

9:00 AM Keynote Address - Sheyann Webb-Christburg

9:45 AM What is Racism?

10:15 AM Break

10:30 AM Session One - Resiliency

or What is Racism? Deep Dive Conversation

11:30 AM Break

11:45 AM How 2020 Changed the Way We Look at Racial Disparities and Injustice

12:15 PM Break

12:45 PM Session Two - Opportunity

or How 2020 Changed the Way We Look at Racial Disparities and Injustice Deep Dive Conversation

1:45 PM Break

2:00 PM Prosperity Indiana Awards Ceremony

2:30 PM How to Build and Sustain Community

3:00 PM Break

3:15 PM Session Three - Transformation

or How to Build & Sustain Community Deep Dive Conversation

4:15 PM Networking Reception

5:00 PM End of Day One

Day Two

8:15 AM Indiana Assets & Opportunity Network Breakfast

9:00 AM Keynote Address: Regional Collaboration

9:45 AM Journey to Become Antiracist

10:15 AM Break

10:30 AM Session Four - Resiliency, Opportunity, Transformation

or Journey to Become Antiracist Deep Dive Conversation

11:30 AM Break

12:00 PM Facilitated Community Discussion, Next Steps, and Closing

1:00 PM End of Summit

Sheyann Webb-Christburg

Brian Dabson

Keynote Addresses

  • Sheyann Webb-Christburg - The March Continues: Rebuilding Our Communities!
Civil rights & voting rights activist, author, humanitarian & the recipient of the Congressional Gold Medal from President Barack Obama. These are only a few words to describe a woman of humble beginnings who has become an inspiration to the world. Sheyann Webb-Christburg, a native of Selma, Alabama has been a voice of justice, equality, courage, commitment, and character since the tender age of eight. Nationally known as the co-author of the book Selma, Lord, Selma: Girlhood Memories of the Civil Rights Days, which was later made into an NAACP Image Award nominated Disney movie, Sheyann is currently at work on her second book, Didn’t Let Nobody Turn Me Around.
  • Brian Dabson - Regional Collaboration: A Path to Geographic and Racial Equity for Rural America?

Brian Dabson is a Research Fellow, School of Government, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, and consultant to the Aspen Institute Community Strategies Group. He researches and writes on rural and regional economic and community development, including regional collaboration and rural-urban connections. His December 2020 brief focused on COVID-19 recovery and resilience for Thrive Rural is titled "Equitable Recovery and Resilience in Rural America."

Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Sessions

  • How to Build and Sustain Community
Imhotep Adisa, Kheprw Institute
Mariah Ivey, That Peace Open Mic
How do we build and sustain community? What do these concepts even mean, and can anybody do it? Who better to learn from than those who've been engaged in meaningful community building work for years. This session will feature an intergenerational lens on deepening our understanding of the art and science of community, providing tools and mindsets YOU can use to build and sustain community, and engage the matter of how to move this work forward in the time of COVID-19.
  • What is Racism?
Murdock (Anthony Murdock II), Murdock LLC

Racism was born of a pilgrim and white privilege that pillaged villages and peoples. It should be considered this country’s “original sin”. In this session, light will be shed on how systems of oppression created a country that capitalized the “R” in race to reinforce the role that race plays in our perception of reality.

  • How 2020 Changed the Way We Look at Racial Disparities and Injustice
Murdock (Anthony Murdock II), Murdock LLC

Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result; James Baldwin said to be Black and conscious in this country is to be in a constant state of rage. Instead of being insanely outrageous and entering 2021 like we did 2020, let’s define the “new normal” as something that is anything but normal.

  • Journey to Become Antiracist
Saneta Maiko, Josserb Consulting
The world continues to change and has become diversely complex, interconnected, globalized, and technologically networked. This has led to elements of individual and group polarization. Polarization, on one hand, has produced innovation, empathy, compassion, and desire to learn about the other. Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access (IDEA) are becoming the key drivers of our modern society. Sadly, we live in places where IDEA is misperceived to be dangerous and unattainable. Every individual and organization must step up to establish strategic goals and objectives that lead to better work, where everyone finds and promotes peace. This presentation will focus on a personal journey on becoming antiracist, using Professor Ibram X. Kendi's model. According to Professor Kendi, to be antiracist, one must become emotionally intelligent. This will take persistent self-awareness, constant self-criticism, and regular self-examination. You will leave this session challenged to take the responsibility of owning becoming antiracist.

Resiliency Sessions

  • Community Wealth Building

Diop Adisa, Kheprw Institute

Amandula Anderson, IFF

Barato Britt, Edna Martin Christian Center

    This panel discussion will include members of various community organizations in Indianapolis who will provide different perspectives and focus areas around community wealth building. The panel will start by co-creating a definition of community wealth building as it relates to the communities they each serve. They will share the approaches that they have taken in their organizations and career paths, highlighting things that have been most effective. The panel will wrap up with a discussion about how institutions and communities can work together to leverage resources and work together to create the kinds of communities we all want to live in.
    • Leveraging ALICE Data to Inform 2Gen Strategy and Innovation

    Stephanie Fritz, United Way of Central Indiana

    Shannon Jenkins, United Way of Central Indiana

    Brandon Cosby, Flanner House of Indianapolis

    Debra White, Flanner House of Indianapolis

      Session attendees will learn about what Asset-Limited, Income Constrained, Employed (ALICE) household data means behind the numbers and who in our community is most disproportionately impacted by poverty. Attendees will learn how United Way leverages ALICE data to inform its current and future impact strategies and investments while ensuring funding is impacting whole families equitably. Additionally, presenters will share how United Way has leveraged a two-generation approach to improve the educational success and economic opportunity for ALICE families in Central Indiana. Attendees will also hear from one of United Way’s community-based organization partners, Flanner House of Indianapolis, on how they are leveraging funding and implementing two-generation programs and services to serve their individual clients and families.

      • Small With Large Impact: How Morning Light Builds With Diversity
      Tom Fodor, Morning Light

        This session will underscore how important it is for nonprofits to embed diversity into daily operations. Tom will explain what this total commitment looks like. Factors to be covered include organization nondiscrimination policy, board member recruitment, building career paths, valuing employees through benefits and communications, and the rewards of community collaborations. The session will conclude with the Three Amigos of Diversity:

        • Awareness: Keeping your eyes and ears open for opportunities to make a difference

        • Innovation: With every new vacancy, incorporate into the process of how to improve opportunity and strengthen career paths

        • Empathy: Walk in the shoes of your customers, staff, and community to appreciate their opportunity perspective

        • Transforming Misconception to Understanding

        Megan Coler-Hasser, Federal Home Loan Bank of Indianapolis

        Margie Worrell, United Way of Central Indiana

          Poverty is a reality for many individuals and families. Unless you have experienced poverty, it can be difficult to truly understand. This session gives you an opportunity to participate in an interactive immersion experience that helps give you a new perspective and understanding of those with different experiences. In this session, you will participate in a virtual poverty simulation and learn how one organization is using this powerful tool to help financial institutions address their relationships with marginalized populations.
          • Up Close: Business Retention and Expansion: Fostering Resiliency

          Heather Strohm, Purdue University Extension

          Tanya Hall, Purdue University Extension

            This session will assist Indiana communities in analyzing their local economies. Participants will learn to utilize this data/information as a basis for identifying, designing, and implementing strategies that can help strengthen existing businesses and industries. Become a guide for the community’s process of implementing the Business Retention & Expansion program by providing a Business Retention & Expansion coach/mentor to come alongside the community resources, moving the effort forward to completion, and equipping the local Business Retention & Expansion coordinator to continue to lead the effort.

            Opportunity Sessions

            • Expanding the Community Loan Center Across America

            Matt Hull, Texas Community Capital

            Sherry Aden, Brightpoint

            Marie Morse, Homestead CS

            Many low-income families are unable to obtain conventional credit and instead rely on payday and auto-title lenders for small loans that come with predatory interest rates. This session will look at an alternative working in several states that allows local organizations to serve as the lender for fairly priced small-dollar loans. A program that is both sustainable and scalable, to date, the Community Loan Center has provided more than 75,000 loans in seven states and saved borrowers over $50 million compared to payday loans.

            • Fair Housing Update
            Amy Nelson, Fair Housing Center of Central Indiana
            In this workshop, hear the latest happening in Indiana and across our country related to fair housing. This workshop will review fair housing data, case filings and resolutions of interest, and any regulatory changes impacting fair housing compliance.
            • Investing in Middle Neighborhoods: A Way to Build Social/Racial Equity through Housing

            David Sanchez, National Community Stabilization Trust

            Stephanie Quick, Renew Indianapolis

            Anthony Bridgeman, PNC Bank

            This session will address the importance of middle neighborhoods, strategies for improving them, and highlight areas of opportunity across Indiana. This includes an introduction to the Middle Neighborhoods Community of Practice. Renew Indianapolis builds on its affordable housing work, focused on three main goals to reduce barriers to safe, affordable, and respectful housing in Indianapolis: 1) Increase access to areas of opportunity for low-and moderate-income homebuyers; 2) Provide housing development expertise and investment in areas not currently served by a community-based housing development organization; 3) Narrow the racial homeownership gap through equitable housing opportunities. Attendees will also learn about PNC's work throughout the state to support the production and preservation of affordable housing and PNC’s $1 Billion To Help End Systemic Racism and Support Economic Empowerment of African Americans and Low- And Moderate-Income Communities.
            • Redefining "Risk": Dismantling Systemic Racism in the Underwriting and Due Diligence Process

            Matt Roth, IFF

            Keith Broadnax, Cinnaire

            David Noble, Midland States Bank

            Amandula Anderson, IFF

            This session will identify systemic barriers in underwriting across different impact investors and explore ways to redefine risk more equitably. The following questions will be explored: Are we imposing additional burdens on smaller, grassroots organizations whom we perceive to be riskier? Is power and influence too concentrated in a few individuals on the credit committee? If we take more “risk”, what does that mean for our investment management track record, and how do we find funding partners who will help us share that “risk” while we learn? How do we continue to ask critical, probing questions to ensure strong credit decisions while acknowledging the implicit bias that may be present in such questions?

            • The Structures of Inclusion and Exclusion (Part One)
            Anna Schoon, Northwest Indiana Community Action
            As humans, we exist on a continuum of privilege and marginalization. Our place on this continuum is not static. We can move up and down the continuum between specific structural barriers. These barriers are more visible to those on the marginalized side and more easily surmountable by those on the privileged side. In this session, we will examine the structure of those barriers and the narratives that we build around them. We will examine the ways in which we use narrative to objectify and dehumanize those on the opposite side of these barriers and will begin to identify some of our own red flags in order to recognize when we have fallen into the trap of justifying ourselves. Finally, we will discover one way to move beyond objectification and justification and to build structures of belonging, overcoming the barriers along the continuum, and establishing inclusivity.

            Transformation Sessions

            • Check Yourself - What's Your Bias Temperature?

            Deborah Fisher, Grassroots Maternal and Child Health Leadership Training Initiative

            LaToya Tahirou Hale, Grassroots Maternal and Child Health Leadership Training Initiative

            Tia Washum, Grassroots Maternal and Child Health Leadership Training Initiative

            Through sharing social and health science data, telling personal stories, and interactive learning sessions, participants will understand how structural, institutional, and interpersonal racism impacts the health and social well-being of all individuals, families, and communities across generations. The Grassroots Maternal and Child Health Leaders leading this session will engage the audience in interactive learning sessions and imaging exercises that will help participants learn how to address interpersonal, institutional, and structural racism and promote equity for traditionally marginalized communities.
            • Local Government Appointments - Are They Really Representative?
            K.K. Gearhart-Fritz, The Planning Workshop, Inc.
            Do local decision-making bodies truly represent their communities? In too many Hoosier cities, towns, and counties, the people appointed to serve on local decision-making bodies skew white, older, upper-middle-income, and male, out of sync with the actual local population. This session will explain who these appointed bodies are and what they do, including the Plan Commission, Board of Zoning Appeals, and the Redevelopment Commission. We will discuss the impact that these groups have on the future of neighborhoods and communities by making local land-use decisions on housing and transportation. This session will include an overview of Indiana Code standards for appointments and a discussion on how to develop a strategy for your community to be more fairly represented on these appointed decision-making bodies, including analyzing community make-up and pushing for an open application process.
            • Moving from Education to Action: Supporting Individual and Organizational Transformation with Implicit Bias Training

            Deborah Myerson, Implicit Bias Community of Practice and Housing & Myerson Consulting

            Monica Black, Implicit Bias Community of Practice and Riley Physicians/IU Health

            Stephanie Soloman, Youth Services Bureau

            Paulina Guerrero, All-Options

            Created in 2018, the Implicit Bias Community of Practice (IBCoP) is a focus team of Building a Thriving Compassionate Community (BTCC). BTCC is a network of organizations and individuals collaborating to provide training, build relationships, and promote actionable change to address the root causes of social problems in Monroe County. IBCoP is a collective of trainers and practitioners committed to recognizing and addressing individual and systemic racism. The Implicit Bias Community of Practice is comprised of individuals with a wide range of lived experiences. The IBCoP offers Implicit Bias training to help recognize and act on the implicit bias embedded in ourselves, our organizations, and our community. To date, IBCoP has conducted over two dozen Implicit Bias trainings for 300+ participants. Clients have included public agencies, nonprofits, faith organizations, school boards, and educational institutions.

            • The Structures of Inclusion and Exclusion (Part Two)
            Anna Schoon, Northwest Indiana Community Action
              As a response to the increasing violence in our culture, the widening ideological divides, and the growing gap in economic well-being, there is greater awareness that a deeper sense of community is desperately needed. But, even as we acknowledge the need to build community, the dominant on-the-ground practices about how to engage people, civically and organizationally, remain essentially unchanged. We believe that community is built with better messaging, more persuasion, and social events for people to get to know each other better. Building from Part 1, this interactive session explores a new way of thinking, based on the work of Peter Block, that creates an opening for authentic communities to exist. This community is future-focused, gifts-focused, accountable, and hospitable. Participants will practice the community-building skills introduced in the previous session.
              • Understanding the Landscape of Work Across the Social Determinants of Health in Marion County

              Kim Irwin, Health by Design

              Joey Vrazel, Leverage Points Consulting

              Across Marion County, an extensive amount of work is underway in the areas of economic stability, education, social and community matters, health and health care, and neighborhoods and the built environment. These factors have been shown to significantly influence the health and wellbeing of people and places and are known as the social determinants of health (SDOH). Although there is a general awareness of the range of efforts that are ongoing in Marion County, no known inventory exists that captures the totality of this work and the partners involved. We will describe how we identified and compiled the organizations working across the SDOH and the lessons learned along the way. Taking it a step further, we will discuss how this information can be used to create a new civic infrastructure and transform the way partner organizations work to address and solve complex community challenges.


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