This session will enable participants to better understand US history and why John Lewis said “the vote is almost sacred” and how lessons from Mississippi’s Freedom Summer are being used today in Movement for Black Lives, how are voters being disenfranchised and suppressed today and practical steps on what we can do about it, how to make a voting plan, volunteering to be poll workers, how can we ensure census is completed and help others to do.
Speakers, performers and voices include:
Amanda Hambrick Ashcraft is the Executive Minister for Justice, Education & Movement Building at Middle Church. She is the founder of Raising Imagination, a platform that examines social issues through the lens of imagination and encourages activism with young and old alike. Her activism has been featured on CNN, MSNBC, Yahoo, the Wall Street Journal, and Refinery29.
Genesis Be is an artist and activist, with a newly released album titled People Not Things and debuted an art exhibit in March of the same name in Los Angeles. Her ongoing activism was an instrumental part of Mississippi's decision to take down their state flag. Find her online @GenesisBe
LaTosha Brown 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. She is the cofounder of Black Voters Matter Fund, a power building southern based civic engagement organization that played an instrumental role in the 2017 Alabama U.S. Senate race.
Paul Devlin serves as Party District Leader in his home neighborhood of Hell's Kitchen and has been appointed as a representative to Manhattan's Community Board 4, where he serves as Co-Chair of the Chelsea Land Use Committee. He is a member of the Middle Collegiate Church Voter Reform Project.
Marlene Fox is the Executive Minister for Operations, Stewardship & Finance at Middle Church. Her work around obesity and improved health outcomes for children currently serves as a model for communities across the country. She is an executive producer on Harlem Children's Zone’s documentary, Harlem Rising which captures the history of the organization.
Jorge Fontanez co-founded Collective Action for Puerto Rico, a group of faith-based leaders and institutions advocating for the self-determination of the Puerto Rican people. Jorge has been a First Movers Fellow since 2014, a program of The Aspen Institute Business & Society Program, the foremost leader in intrapreneurship, shaping business as a force for social good, and he lectures a course on Stakeholders & Marketing at the Bard MBA in Sustainability program. He is a census volunteer, and member of the Middle Collegiate Church Voter Reform Project.
Jo Ann Robinson is a Middle Collegiate Church Voting Reform Team Member, 1964 Mississippi Freedom Summer volunteer and Freedom School teacher 1964-65, and professor emeritus of Black history at Morgan State University