Participants, 'Black Lives Matter Under a New Presidency'


portrait of angela glover blackwell
Angela Glover Blackwell
Founder in Residence, PolicyLink
2014 Richman Fellow, Brandeis University

Angela Glover Blackwell is Founder in Residence at PolicyLink, the organization she started in 1999 to advance racial and economic equity for all. Under Angela's leadership, PolicyLink gained national prominence in the movement to use public policy to improve access and opportunity for all low-income people and communities of color, particularly in the areas of health, housing, transportation, and infrastructure. Her Radical Imagination podcast debuted in September 2019, introducing listeners to a world of creative, progressive thinkers whose vision is challenging the status quo to create the change we need.

Prior to founding PolicyLink, Angela served as Senior Vice President at The Rockefeller Foundation. A lawyer by training, she gained national recognition as founder of the Urban Strategies Council. From 1977 to 1987, Angela was a partner at Public Advocates. Angela is the co-author of Uncommon Common Ground: Race and America's Future, and she authored The Curb Cut Effect, published in the Stanford Social Innovation Review in 2017.

As a leading voice in the movement for equity in America, Angela serves on numerous boards. She advised the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve as one of 15 members of its inaugural Community Advisory Council, and in 2020 was appointed by California Governor Gavin Newsom to the state Task Force on Business and Jobs Recovery. She is the 2018 recipient of the John W. Gardner Leadership Award, presented by the Independent Sector, and in 2017, she received the Peter E. Haas Public Service Award from the University of California, Berkeley.

portrait of jeffrey brown
Rev. Jeffrey L. Brown
Founder, Rebuilding Every Community Around Peace
2017 Richman Fellow, Brandeis University

The Rev. Jeffrey L. Brown is founder of RECAP: Rebuilding Every Community Around Peace and a key community leader responsible for what the New York Times called the "Boston Miracle," when the youth homicide rate declined from a high of 73 deaths (1990) to zero (1995-1998). The model of social responsibility Brown helped mastermind involves new roles for youth, police and courts to advance social justice and ensure the right of every young person to live in an urban community without violence.

After obtaining a master's degree from Indiana University and attending Harvard Divinity School, Brown became the full-time pastor at Union Baptist Church in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where watching the rise in gunfire deaths of youth in his community, he became deeply committed to ending the violence cycle. His aim was to prevent the assumption that the youth were "bad" kids who wanted to join gangs, and sought to understand the circumstances that led to their behavior. He saw that preaching alone wouldn't solve the problem. He discovered the best way to connect with teenagers was to walk the neighborhood himself at night, meet with gangs on their own terms and listen.

On May 14, 1992, 14 gang members entered the Morningstar Baptist church in Boston during a funeral and beat and stabbed a rival gang member in attendance at the service. This prompted Brown to join forces with other clergy to develop the TenPoint Coalition, forging connections between the clergy and Boston's minority youth. Brown was recognized for his efforts by President Bill Clinton in 1997 and Senator Elizabeth Warren in 2013. Brown pastored at the Union Baptist Church for 22 years, and continues his ministry in the 12th Baptist Church of Roxbury.

Brown has helped communities all over the world adopt this model, including Louisville, Kentucky; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; and communities in Rio de Janeiro, Johannesburg and Belfast.

watch Jeffrey Brown's TED talk

portrait of beverly daniel tatum
Beverly Daniel Tatum
President Emerita, Spelman College
2018 Gittler Prize Recipient, Brandeis University

Beverly Daniel Tatum, president emerita of Spelman College, is a clinical psychologist widely known for both her expertise on race relations and as a thought leader in higher education. Her 13 years as the president of Spelman College (2002-2015) were marked by innovation and growth and her visionary leadership was recognized in 2013 with the Carnegie Academic Leadership Award.

The author of several books, including the best-selling Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? And Other Conversations About Race (2017 20th-anniversary edition) and Can We Talk About Race? And Other Conversations in an Era of School Resegregation (2007), Tatum is a sought-after speaker on the topics of racial identity development, race and education, strategies for creating inclusive campus environments, and higher education leadership. In 2005, Tatum was awarded the Brock International Prize in Education for her innovative leadership in the field. A Fellow of the American Psychological Association, she was the 2014 recipient of the APA Award for Outstanding Lifetime Contributions to Psychology.

A civic leader in the Atlanta community, Tatum is engaged in educational initiatives designed to expand educational opportunity for underserved students and their families. In Atlanta, she serves on the governing boards of the Westside Future Fund, Achieve Atlanta, Morehouse College and the Tull Charitable Foundation. She is also on the boards of Smith College and the Educational Testing Service.

She holds a bachelor's degree in psychology from Wesleyan University, master's and doctoral degrees in clinical psychology from the University of Michigan as well as a master's in religious studies from Hartford Seminary. Over the course of her career, she has served as a faculty member at the University of California, Santa Barbara; Westfield State University; and Mount Holyoke College. Prior to her 2002 appointment as president of Spelman, she served as dean and acting president at Mount Holyoke College. In spring 2017 ,she was the Mimi and Peter E. Haas Distinguished Visitor at Stanford University.

She is married to Dr. Travis Tatum; they are the parents of two adult sons.


portrait of carina ray
Carina Ray
Associate Professor, African and African American Studies
Harry Coplan Chair of Social Sciences

Carina Ray is an associate professor of African and African American Studies and director of faculty mentoring at Brandeis University. A scholar of race and sexuality; comparative colonialisms and nationalisms; migration and maritime history; print cultures; bodily aesthetics, and the relationship among race, ethnicity and political power, Ray’s research is primarily focused on Ghana and its diasporas.

She is the author of Crossing the Color Line: Race, Sex and the Contested Politics of Colonialism in Ghana (Ohio University Press, 2015). Her articles have appeared in Gender and History, PMLA, The Journal of West African History, and The American Historical Review, among others. Her writing has also been featured in popular media outlets, including the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, HuffPo and The Progressive, among others.

Ray is currently at work on three interrelated book projects. Somatic Blackness: A Longue Durée History of the Body in West Africa traces the development of indigenous ideas about blackness, the bod, and human difference within local, regional, transregional and global networks of exchange and knowledge production. Black on White: Writing Race in the Gold Coast Press (1857-1957) and Becoming Black Stars: Race and State Politics in Ghana track the transformations that occurred across the 19th and 20th centuries as Ghanaians constructed, claimed and contested blackness as a political identity in opposition to (white) British colonial rule and in conversation with African nationalism and global Pan-Africanism.

She is also working on a long-term oral history project documenting the experiences of Cubans who served in Angola, Mozambique and Ethiopia. She is editor, with Jean Allman, Derek Peterson and Allen Isaacman, of Ohio University Press's New African Histories book series, and editor, with Toyin Falola, of the Cambridge University Press book series, African Identities.