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Sessions 2022

What does a society that values community leadership look like? 

What resources does it need to transform its immediate and long-term futures?

Learn more about our workshop and panel offerings below! 

Please note that titles and scheduled times are subject to change. Sessions are 50-minutes unless noted.

Simultaneous Spanish interpretation services will be available for plenaries and selected breakout sessions (**). / La interpretación simultánea en español estará disponible para las conversaciones de apertura  y algunas otras sesiones.


October 18th


12 pm - 1 pm EDT

Opening Keynote: Remember

Clint Smith, Staff writer at The Atlantic, New York Times bestselling author, award winning poet will deliver the opening keynote: How The Word Is Passed. Reckoning with the history and memory of slavery and why it matters for children and for our collective liberation.

  • Clint Smith, Award-winning Poet and Author, Counting Descent and How The Word Is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America


1:20pm - 2:10pm EDT

Radical Reimagining of Systems: Participatory Budgeting for People to Access Real Power for Change

In this dynamic session you will be introduced to participatory budgeting and how it can be used to redistribute power and radically redesign systems.

  • Shari Davis, Co-Executive Director, Participatory Budgeting Project

Liberating Birth – Reclaiming Space for Birth Justice and Equity

This interactive panel discussion will feature Ted-Style presentations on strategies to advance birth justice and healing from Birth Centers to community leadership for unmasking and healing from pregnancy and infant loss.

  • Nashira Baril, Founder, Neighborhood Birth Center

  • Stephanie Crawford, Founder, Propa City Community Outreach, and Owner, Belle Joie Doula services

  • Leseliey Welch, Co-Founder, Birth Detroit and Birth Center Equity

Live Poster Session:

  • Breastfeeding in Color: Advancing health equity in Springfield one drop at a time -Shanell Ford

  • Using the Help Me Grow Model to Support Families During the COVID-19 PandemicCassandra Therriault

  • Associations between supermarket access, neighborhood income, and reported nutrient intake among a cohort of pregnancy plannersMartha Koenig

  • The Double Burden: Disparities in pap smear receipt among racial and ethnic minority women with disabilitiesSharonda Lovett

  • The Psychosocial Impact of COVID-19 on Undocumented Latinx Immigrants Living in the US Idalis Ramos Correa


2:30pm - 3:10pm EDT

The Science of Community Engagement in Research

Stakeholder engagement is a crucial part of participatory public health research, yet the measurement of stakeholder engagement in research is inconsistent. Learn more about the research engagement survey tool (REST) and how to use it to measure to assess the level of stakeholder engagement.

  • Melody Goodman, Associate Dean for Research and Associate Professor of Biostatistics, School of Global Public Health at New York University

Community-Driven Leadership to Preserve Food, Land and Water 

How do we scale and restore community power, self-determination, and build and sustain resilient food systems, and promote environmental justice in Indigenous communities and communities of color?  This panel discussion will share examples of how to strategically advancing community-driven local food systems, land and water preservation for community health and wellness through policy, advocacy, capacity building, and collaboration. 

  • Karen Washington, Co-Founder, Black Urban Growers and Co-owner/Farmer, Rise & Root Farm

  • Jillian Waln, Journalist, Community Engagement Coordinator for REDCO, Co-Owner of Zaniya Pro Clean

Declaring the Rights of Children

This dynamic panel session will discuss strategies to promote mentorship and leadership development pathways for youth of color.  Review structural and environmental challenges, including corporate trauma.  Applying a human rights framework speakers will review ways to promote  safe spaces, flourishing places, and opportunity structures for all children to thrive.

  • Jamoul Celey, Founder of Carbonado Coaching

  • Erika Rodriguez, Executive Director, Chica Project


3:30pm - 4:30pm EDT

Townhall: Transformational Moments with Children – Joy, Justice and Racial Identity.

This Townhall will focus on strategies to promote positive racial identify formation, antiracism for children, and family-driven strategies to advance racial justice.

  • Andrew Grant-Thomas, Co-Founder, EmbraceRace

  • Melissa Giraud, Co-Founder, EmbraceRace

  • Cherie Craft, Founding CEO and Executive Director, Smart from the Start


October 22nd


12pm - 1:00 pm EDT

Call to Action: Creating Avenues for Healing

  • Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley, Massachusetts’ 7th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives

Spark Speech: Social Justice Parenting and Youth Empowerment

  • Traci Baxley, Creator of and Coach for Social Justice Parenting™

Townhall Plenary: Youth Leadership for Sustainable Social Change

How to we promote youth leadership for healing-centered communities?  Learn from leaders across the country about transformative models for youth development, engagement and social justice.

  • Jennifer Arwade, Communities United

  • Raul Botello, Communities United

  • Meyiya Coleman, Communities United

  • Marsha Jean Charles, The Brotherhood Sister Sol


1:20pm - 2:10pm EDT

Workshop Session – Moving from Trauma-Informed Care to Healing Centered Engagement

This interactive workshop will explore healing -centered engagement approaches and how to promote them within nonprofit and service organizations.

  • Lee Porscha Moore, Senior Trainer, Flourish Agenda

Panel Discussion - Transforming Food Systems for Indigenous Well-Being: From Community to Action to Policy and Beyond 

The food system is an important determinant of public and planetary health; increasing support for indigenous food systems have the potential to address the compounding issues of basic needs insecurity, health inequalities, and cultural erasure faced by Indigenous communities. How can community-participatory program implementation and health research and policy further food justice?

  • Elise dela Cruz-Talbert, Data Center Coordinator, Children’s Healthy Living Program

  • Jennifer Gauthier, Senior Outreach Specialist for the Menominee County/Nation

Live Poster Presentation Session:

  • No Throw-away Kids; #150YearsIsEnough – Ashanti Jones

  • Household Pesticide Exposures and Infant Gross Motor Development in the MADRES Cohort – Ixel Hernandez

  • What matters to you: Evaluation of a participant-centered approach to needs identification and connection to community resources – Lauren Haynes

  • Engaging Underserved Youth with Mental Health Activities in a Community-Based Sexual Health Clinic – Lauren DiGiovannii

  • Transforming Practice with HOPE (Healthy Outcomes from Positive Experiences) – Laura Gallant


2:30pm - 3:20pm EDT

 Plenary Session - Redesigning for Justice: Amplifying the Power of Equity Designers

How do we apply an equity and social justice lens to human-centered design? Through this interactive workshop learn innovative approaches to human-centered design using an equity lens.

  • Cordell Billups, Program Coordinator, Creative Reaction Lab

  • Hilary Sedovic, Learning and Education Director, Creative Reaction Lab

Breaking Topic Session - Black Families and the First 1,000 Days

New report on how Black families and their babies are doing amid COVID-19, and call for racial justice. Learn how Black families are better supported when there is an intentional and strategic focus on designing systems and implementing programs, interventions, and strategies that build on and attend to the cultural assets and strengths of Black families.

  • Iheoma U. Iruka, Research Professor in Public Policy and Founding Director of Equity Research Action Coalition at University of North Carolina Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute

Panel Discussion - Cooperatives and Transformative Community Capacity Building for Equity and Justice 

Learn how the Beloved Community Incubator has expand cooperative models in the DC Metro area and beyond during the COVID-19 pandemic through a network of members, exchanging resources, connections and support.

  • Megan Macaraeg, Organizing Director, Beloved Community Incubator

  • Bianca Vazquez, Program Director, Beloved Community Incubator


3:30pm - 4:30pm EDT

Spark Speech: Stand Up for Children and Families - Immigration, Trauma, and Restoring Hope through Belonging

  • Smith G.H. Lamothe, Improvement Advisor, Community Champion, Navigator, Boston Medical Center


Closing Keynote: Reclaiming the Power of Us!

This keynote will incorporate narrative poetry to explore the powerful role of ancestry, history, and culture in shaping identity.

  • Porsha Olayiwole, award-winning poet, writer, performer and curator who uses afro-futurism and surrealism to examine historical and current issues in the Black, woman, and queer diasporas and the current poet laureate for the City of Boston. 

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