top of page

Speaker Bios


Khalil Gibran Muhammad

Ford Foundation Professor of History, Race, and Public Policy, Harvard Kennedy School

Khalil Gibran Muhammad is the Ford Foundation Professor of History, Race and Public Policy at Harvard Kennedy School. He directs the Institutional Antiracism and Accountability Project and is the former Director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, a division of the New York Public Library and the world’s leading library and archive of global black history. Before leading the Schomburg Center, Khalil was an associate professor at Indiana University. Khalil’s scholarship examines the broad intersections of racism, economic inequality, criminal justice and democracy in U.S. History. He is co-editor of “Constructing the Carceral State,” a special issue of the Journal of American History, and contributor to a National Research Council study, The Growth of Incarceration in the United States: Exploring Causes and Consequences (2014), as well as the award-winning author of The Condemnation of Blackness: Race, Crime, and the Making of Modern Urban America. He is currently co-directing a National Academy of Sciences study on reducing racial inequalities in the criminal justice system. His writing and scholarship have been featured in national print and broadcast media outlets, such as the New Yorker, Washington Post, The Nation, National Public Radio, PBS Newshour, Moyers and Company, MSNBC, and the New York Times, which includes his sugar essay for The 1619 Project. He has appeared in a number of feature-length documentaries, including the recently-released Amend: The Fight for America (2021), the Oscar-nominated 13th (2016) and Slavery by Another Name (2012). Khalil was an associate editor of The Journal of American History and an Andrew W. Mellon fellow at the Vera Institute of Justice. He is a member of the Society of American Historians and the American Antiquarian Society. In 2017, Khalil received the Distinguished Service Medal from Columbia University’s Teachers College. And holds two honorary doctorates. He is on the boards of the Vera Institute of Justice, The Museum of Modern Art, Cure Violence Global, Oliver Scholars, The New York Historical Society, and The Nation magazine, as well as the advisory boards of Common Justice, The HistoryMakers and the Lapidus Center for the Study of Transatlantic Slavery. Khalil is an award-winning teacher at Harvard and has received numerous honors for his commitment to public engagement, including BPI Chicago’s Champion of the Public Interest Award (2018), The Fortune Society’s Game Changer Award (2017), Ebony Power 100 (2013), The Root 100 of Black Influencers (2012-2014), and Crain’s New York Business magazine 40 under 40 (2011). A native of Chicago’s South Side, Khalil graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a B.A. in Economics in 1993, and then joined Deloitte as a staff accountant until entering graduate school. He earned his Ph.D. in U.S. History from Rutgers University.

Mark Rosenbaum

Robins Kaplan Director, Opportunity Under Law

Mark Rosenbaum is director of Public Counsel Opportunity Under Law, which aims to eliminate economic injustice. He has argued four times before the United States Supreme Court, more than 25 before the Ninth and Sixth Circuit federal Courts of Appeal, three before the California Supreme Court and before the United States Court of Military Appeals. Rosenbaum has been principal counsel in landmark cases in the areas of K-12 public and higher education, voting rights, poverty law and homelessness, racial, gender, class and sexual orientation discrimination, health care, immigrants’ rights, foster care and criminal defendants’ rights. Among his many high profile cases, Rosenbaum was successful in securing over $1 billion for underserved schools in textbooks, qualified teachers and safe and sanitary school facilities (Williams v. California); blocking the Trump administration’s efforts to end the DACA program (DHS v. Regents of the University of California); securing a historic ruling in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals recognizing the constitutional right to literacy (Gary B. v. Whitmer); redistricting Los Angeles County Board of Supervisor district lines to end over 118 years of discrimination against Latinos (Garza v. Board of Supervisors); invalidating Proposition 187 (Gregorio T. v. Wilson); overturning the conviction of Black Panther Geronimo Pratt; and obtaining relief on behalf of severely disabled homeless veterans (Valentini v. Shinseki). He currently teaches law at the University of California Irvine Law School and has also taught at UCLA, USC and Loyola law schools and currently teaches courses in liberty and equality and free speech to Chinese law students at Peking University of Transnational Law in Shenzhen, China. Rosenbaum graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Michigan and from Harvard Law School. He is the recipient of numerous awards for his advocacy – including twice being named “California Lawyer of the Year” in civil rights and being selected to the Daily Journal’s “Top Lawyers of the Decade” for 2011-2020. He joined Public Counsel from his roles for over four decades with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Southern California, most recently as Chief Counsel, and for over two decades as a professor of law at the University of Michigan, most recently as the Harvey Gunderson Professor from Practice, specializing in constitutional and civil rights law courses.

Marc R

Douglas A. Blackmon


Douglas A. Blackmon is a distinguished journalist, scholar, filmmaker, and the Pulitzer-Prize winning author of Slavery by Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II.  His book revealed how a system of enslavement of African-Americans was resurrected after the Civil War and persisted deep into the 20th century. Blackmon was also co-executive producer of the acclaimed documentary film based on Slavery by Another Name, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2012, attracted more than five million viewers in its first broadcasts on PBS, and continues to be regularly rebroadcast on public television across the U.S.


Blackmon is currently making "The Harvest," a documentary examining public school integration and the consequences, 50 years later, of America’s failure to replace segregation with diverse, shared educational experiences across our society. He also directs the Narrating Justice Project at Georgia State University in Atlanta. Previously, he was a member of the faculty at the University of Virginia's Miller Center and hosted more than 200 episodes of the nationally broadcast public television discussion program American Forum.


Blackmon was an award-winning senior national correspondent and bureau chief for many years at The Wall Street Journal, and a member of reporting teams which won a Pulitzer Prize in 2002 and were finalists for a Pulitzer in 2011. He is also co-author of a forthcoming book with former U.S. Attorney General Eric H. Holder.


Blackmon’s work in journalism began with an article published in the local newspaper when he was 12 years old. Over the span of his career, he has witnessed and written about many of the most important events of our time, including the fall of the Berlin Wall, multiple U.S. presidential elections, post-Apartheid South Africa, war crimes during the civil war in the former Yugoslavia, natural disasters including Hurricane Katrina, and man-made catastrophes such as mass incarceration and America’s ongoing crisis of racial inequity.

Douglas A. Blackman
Rahsaan Hall

Rahsaan Hall

former Director of the Racial Justice Program of the ACLU of Massachusetts

A champion for civil rights, former Director of the Racial Justice Program of the ACLU of Massachusetts and ordained reverend, Rahsaan has been at the forefront of local and national issues that call for reimagining a public safety system that prioritizes restoration, transformation, and healing for people who have experienced harm and accountability for people who have caused harm. When Rahsaan served as an ADA for the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office, he worked in the DA’s Safe Neighborhood Initiative and Senior Trial Units, prosecuting drug, gang, and homicide cases. Recognizing the lived experience of victims, he worked closely and compassionately with victims and survivors of violent crime, while finding ways to identify less punitive and more restorative and transformative means of dealing with individuals struggling with substance use and mental health disorders. During his time at the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts and at Lawyers for Civil Rights, he led programs and initiatives that increased community engagement and changed legislative policies. He maintained a litigation caseload of police misconduct, public accommodations and voting rights cases. In 2018, Rahsaan drew national attention for spearheading the What a Difference a DA Makes campaign to educate Massachusetts residents about the power and influence of district attorneys.

Kelly Lytle Hernandez

Professor & Thomas E. Lifka Chair of History, UCLA

Kelly Lytle Hernandez is a professor of History, African American Studies, and Urban Planning at UCLA where she holds The Thomas E. Lifka Endowed Chair in History and is the director of the Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies at UCLA. One of the nation’s leading experts on race, immigration, and mass incarceration, Professor Lytle Hernandez is the author of the award-winning books, Migra! A History of the U.S. Border Patrol (University of California Press, 2010), and City of Inmates: Conquest, Rebellion, and the Rise of Human Caging in Los Angeles (University of North Carolina Press, 2017). Currently, Professor Lytle Hernandez is completing a new book on the magonista movement, which helped to spark the outbreak of the 1910 Mexican Revolution, and she is the Principal Investigator for Million Dollar Hoods, a university-based, community-drive research project that maps the fiscal and human cost of mass incarceration in Los Angeles. For her leadership of Million Dollar Hoods, Professor Lytle Hernandez has won numerous awards, including the 2018 Local Hero Award from KCET/PBS, a 2018 Freedom Now! Award from the Los Angeles Community Action Network, and the 2019 Catalyst Award from the South L.A. parent/student advocacy organization, CADRE. For her historical and contemporary work, Professor Lytle Hernandez has been named a MacArthur “Genius” Fellow and a distinguished lecturer for the Organization of American Historians. She is also an elected member of the Society of American Historians and the Pulitzer Prize Board

KellyLytle Hernandez
Margaret A. B

Margaret A. Burnham

University Distinguished Professor of Law; Director, Civil Rights and Restorative Justice Project; Faculty Co-Director, Center for Law, Equity and Race (CLEAR)

Professor Burnham is an internationally recognized expert on civil and human rights, comparative constitutional rights, and international criminal law. She is the faculty co-director of the law school’s Center for Law, Equity and Race (CLEAR) and founded and directs the Civil Rights and Restorative Justice Project (CRRJ), which investigates racial violence in the Jim Crow era and other historical failures of the criminal justice system. CRRJ serves as a resource for scholars, policymakers and organizers involved in various initiatives seeking justice for these crimes. Among her impressive accomplishments, Professor Burnham headed a team of outside counsel and law students in a landmark case that settled a federal lawsuit. Professor Burnham’s team accused Franklin County Mississippi law enforcement officials of assisting Klansmen in the kidnapping, torture and murder of two 19-year-olds, Henry Dee and Charles Eddie Moore. CRRJ’s investigations are widely covered in the national press, including a PBS Frontline documentary series, “Un(re)solved.” In 2021, President Joe Biden nominated Professor Burnham to serve as a member of the Civil Rights Cold Case Records Review Board; in 2022, the U.S. Senate confirmed her appointment. The board is charged with reviewing the records of Civil Rights era cold criminal cases of murders and other racially motivated violence that occurred between 1940 and 1979. Many of these records are still closed to the public. The board is examining agency decisions to withhold access and to engage with them to determine if the records should still be withheld. Professor Burnham began her career at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund. In the 1970s, she represented civil rights and political activists. In 1977, she became the first African American woman to serve in the Massachusetts judiciary, when she joined the Boston Municipal Court bench as an associate justice. In 1982, she became partner in a Boston civil rights firm with an international human rights practice. In 1993, South African president Nelson Mandela appointed Professor Burnham to serve on an international human rights commission to investigate alleged human rights violations within the African National Congress. The commission was a precursor to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. She joined Northeastern Law in 2002. A former fellow of the Bunting Institute at Radcliffe College and Harvard University's W.E.B. DuBois Institute for Afro-American Studies, Professor Burnham has written extensively on contemporary legal and political issues. In 2016, Professor Burnham was selected for the competitive and prestigious Carnegie Fellows Program. Provided to just 33 recipients nationwide that year, the fellowship provides the “country’s most creative thinkers with grants of up to $200,000 each to support research on challenges to democracy and international order.” Professor Burnham used the funding to deepen and extend CRRJ’s work and research dedicated to seeking justice for crimes of the civil rights era. Professor Burnham’s book, By Hands Now Known: Jim Crow’s Legal Executioners (W.W. Norton, 2022), is a paradigm-shifting investigation of Jim Crow-era violence, the legal apparatus that sustained it, and its enduring legacy. Publishers Weekly, which reviewed it with a coveted “star,” has called it, “An essential reckoning with America’s history of racial violence.” The book was also selected as a finalist for the 2022 Kirkus Prize in nonfiction. Legendary activist Angela Davis has said, “By Hands Now Known: Jim Crow’s Legal Executioners needs to be read by everyone who recognizes the historic mandate of our time: to interrupt cycles of racist violence that are rooted in slavery and have repeatedly found new modes of expression, even as the unresolved old forms plague our historical memory.”

A. Kirsten Mullen

Artefactual, Artefactual 

Folklorist and the founder of Artefactual, an arts-consulting practice, and Carolina Circuit Writers, a literary consortium that brings expressive writers of color to the Carolinas, A. Kirsten Mullen was a member of the Freelon Adjaye Bond concept development team that was awarded the Smithsonian Institution’s commission to design the National Museum of African American History and Culture; worked to expand the North Carolina Arts Council's Coastal Folklife Survey; and was a faculty member with the Community Folklife Documentation Institute, where she trained students to research and record the state’s African American music heritage. Kirsten was a consultant on the North Carolina Museum of History’s “North Carolina Legends” and “Civil Rights” exhibition projects. Her writing in museum catalogs, journals, and in commercial media includes “Black Culture and History Matter” (The American Prospect), which examines the politics of funding black cultural institutions. She and William A. Darity, Jr. are the authors of From Here to Equality: Reparations for Black Americans in the Twenty-first Century (University of North Carolina Press, 2020).

A. Kirsten Mullen

Desmond  Meade

Executive Director, Florida Rights Restoration Coalition  

Desmond Meade is a formerly homeless returning citizen who overcame many obstacles to eventually become the President of the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition (FRRC), Chair of Floridians for a Fair Democracy, a graduate of Miami Dade College, Florida International University College of Law, a Ford Global Fellow, and a 2021 MacArthur “Genius” Fellow. As President and Executive Director of FRRC, which is recognized for its work on voting and criminal justice reform issues, Desmond led the FRRC to a historic victory in 2018 with the successful passage of Amendment 4, a grassroots citizen’s initiative which restored voting rights to over 1.4 million Floridians with past felony convictions. Amendment 4 represented the single largest expansion of voting rights in the United States in half a century and brought an end to 150 years of a Jim Crow-era law in Florida.


Michelle Alexander

Student, Union Theological Seminary 

Michelle Alexander is a former visiting professor at Union Theological Seminary, as well as former associate professor at Stanford Law School and The Ohio State University, where she held a joint appointment at the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity. In 2010, Alexander published The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, a best-selling book described by The Chronicle of Higher Education as “one of the most influential books of the past 20 years.” Prior to entering academia, she served as Director of the Racial Justice Project of the ACLU of Northern California.

Michelle Alexander

Nicholas Lemann

Professor/Dean Emeritus, Columbia Journalism School

Nicholas Lemann is a veteran journalist and nonfiction author. Born and raised in New Orleans, he began his career there at an alternative weekly newspaper called the Vieux Carre Courier. He has been a staff writer at The New Yorker for the past 24 years, and a professor at Columbia Journalism School for the past 20 years. He was dean there from 2003 to 2013. At the confernece he will be speaking abut his 2006 book, Redemption: The Last Battle of the Civil War.

Nicholas Leamen

William Darity Jr.

Samuel DuBois Cook Professor of Public Policy, Duke University

William A. (“Sandy”) Darity Jr. is the Samuel DuBois Cook Professor of Public Policy, African and African American Studies, and Economics and the director of the Samuel DuBois Cook Center on Social Equity at Duke University. Darity’s research focuses on inequality by race, class and ethnicity, schooling and the racial achievement gap, North-South theories of trade and development, skin shade and labor market outcomes, the economics of reparations, the Atlantic slave trade and the Industrial Revolution, the history of economics, and the social psychological effects of exposure to unemployment. In 2005, he launched the subspecialty of stratification economics. Darity is the 2022 W.E.B. Du Bois Fellow of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, and he became a Fellow of the National Academy of Social Insurance in 2021. He received the Samuel Z. Westerfield Award from the National Economic Association in 2012. Coauthored with A. Kirsten Mullen, his book From Here to Equality: Reparations for Black Americans in the Twenty-First Century (2020) is the recipient of the inaugural 2021 book prize from the Association of African American Life and History, the 2021 Lillian Smith book prize, the 2021 American Book Fest award for Social Change, and the 2020 Ragan Old North State award for nonfiction from the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association. His most recent book, coedited with Gwendolyn Wright and Lucas Hubbard, is the 2022 publication, The Pandemic Divide: How COVID-19 Increased Inequality in America.

William Darity Jr
James Forman

James Forman

Professor, Yale Law School 

James Forman, Jr. is a professor at Yale Law School and the faculty director of the Yale Law and Racial Justice Center. Professor Forman worked for six years as a public defender in Washington, D.C. He is also the co-founder of the Maya Angelou School in D.C., an alternative school for youth who have previously been arrested or who have struggled in school. He is the author of Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America, the winner of the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Nonfiction. His parents, James Forman and Constancia Romilly, worked in SNCC with Bob Moses.


Vince Warren

Executive Director, The Center for Constitutional Rights

Vincent Warren is a leading expert on racial injustice and discriminatory policing and is the executive director of the Center for Constitutional Rights. He oversees CCR's groundbreaking litigation and advocacy work, using international and domestic law to challenge human rights abuses, including racial, gender and LGBT injustice. Under his leadership, CCR successfully challenged the NYPD’s Stop-and-Frisk policy and profiling of Muslims, ended long-term solitary confinement in California’s Pelican Bay Prison, and the torture of prisoners in Abu Ghraib prison. CCR is currently challenging the abuse of migrants at the US southern border, the Muslim Ban and the criminalization of transgender people, as well as providing legal and policy support to Black, Brown and Native organizers across the country.

Chesa Boudin

former San Francisco District Attorney

Chesa Boudin is the former elected district attorney of San Francisco. A Rhodes Scholar and a Yale law school graduate, his parents served a combined 62 years in prison. Chesa worked as a public defender before winning an election to the office of district attorney on an explicitly anti-racist and decarceral platform. Because he was delivering on his campaign promises he faced an unprecedented, Republican-funded onslaught of attacks and recalls, which ultimately removed him from office. Chesa remains steadfast in his commitment to creating a more just and equitable criminal legal system and ensuring equal enforcement of the law.


Tasseli McKay 

Postdoctoral Fellow, Duke University

Tasseli McKay is a National Science Foundation fellow at Duke University. Her work on the Multi-site Family Study of Incarceration, Parenting, and Partnering culminated in her first book, Holding On: Family and Fatherhood During Incarceration and Reentry (2019) with Comfort, Lindquist, and Bir. Her new book, Stolen Wealth, Hidden Power: The Case for Reparations for Mass Incarceration (2022), argues for $7.16 trillion in reparations to Black communities for the vast harms of mass incarceration, many of which have been kept out of sight by women’s invisible labor. She holds a doctorate in social policy from the London School of Economics.


Rasul Mowatt

Department Head and Professor, North Carolina State University

Rasul A. Mowatt, PhD from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Currently, the Department Head of Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management in the College of Natural Resources at North Carolina State University. Formally, Professor in the Departments of American Studies and Geography in the College of Arts + Science at Indiana University. Primary areas of research: Geographies of Race, Geographies of Violence/Threat, The Animation of Public Space, and Critical Leisure Studies. Most recent publication: The Geographies of Threat and the Production of Violence: The City and State Between Us.


Goodwin Liu

Associate Justice, California Supreme Court

Justice Goodwin Liu is an Associate Justice of the California Supreme Court. Nominated by Governor Jerry Brown, Justice Liu was unanimously confirmed by the Commission on Judicial Appointments and sworn into office on September 1, 2011. He was retained by the electorate in 2014. Before joining the state’s highest court, Justice Liu was Professor of Law and Associate Dean at the UC Berkeley School of Law. His primary areas of expertise are constitutional law, education law and policy, and diversity in the legal profession.


The son of Taiwanese immigrants, Justice Liu grew up in Sacramento, where he attended public schools. He went to Stanford University and earned a bachelor’s degree in biology in 1991. He attended Oxford University on a Rhodes Scholarship and earned a masters degree in philosophy and physiology. Upon returning to the United States, he went to Washington D.C. to help launch the AmeriCorps national service program and worked for two years as a senior program officer at the Corporation for National Service.


Justice Liu graduated from Yale Law School in 1998, becoming the first in his family to earn a law degree. He clerked for Judge David Tatel on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and then worked as Special Assistant to the Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education. He went on to clerk at the U.S. Supreme Court for Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg during the October 2000 Term. From 2001 to 2003, he worked in the litigation practice of O’Melveny & Myers in Washington, D.C. Justice Liu continues to teach constitutional law as a visiting professor at Harvard Law School. He is an elected member of the American Philosophical Society and the American Law Institute. He serves on the Council of the American Law Institute, on the Board of Directors of the James Irvine Foundation, and on the Yale University Council. He has previously served on the California Commission on Access to Justice, the National Academy of Sciences Committee on Science, Technology, and Law, the Board of Trustees of Stanford University, and the governing boards of the American Constitution Society, the National Women’s Law Center, and the Public Welfare Foundation. He was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2019 and serves as Chair of the Law Section Panel, a member of the Commission on Reimagining Our Economy, and the Committee on Anti-Racism.


Janet Moses


In the summer of 1964, Bronx native Janet Jemmott joined the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee.  She worked in Mississippi and Lowndes County, Alabama, organizing African Americans to vote.   Her work in Mississippi and Alabama was book ended by stints teaching in NYC public middle schools. She and her husband, Bob Moses, were employed by the Tanzanian Ministry of Education to teach in rural Tanzania. Upon returning to the U.S., Janet entered the Boston University School of Medicine.  She practiced Pediatrics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology until she retired in 2004.  She and Bob have 4 children and 7 grandchildren. She is involved in several local initiatives to extend Bob’s legacy through the Bob Moses Conference Series.   She is one of the contributors to Hands on the Freedom Plough, personal accounts of women in SNCC, and producer of “Caste in the Classroom”, an award-winning documentary in the BronzeLens Film Festival in 2021 about American educational apartheid. She is an advisor to Mathtalk, a multimedia initiative spearheaded by son, Omo Moses, to provide young children with early conceptual math learning.

Janet Moses

Danny Glover

Actor, Producer, and Humanitarian Activist

Danny Glover is a legendary actor, producer, and humanitarian activist.  His coming-of-age story is rooted in the many campaigns for human rights here, in the civil rights Movement of the 1960’s, and abroad most notably in the anti-apartheid war for South African independence. He has been on The Algebra Project Board of Directors for 22 years.   He is the recipient of numerous awards for his brilliance in theater and film.  This year, the academy of motion picture arts and sciences is honoring Danny Glover at the 12th annual Governors Award.  He is the recipient of the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award given to an individual in the motion picture arts and sciences whose humanitarian efforts have brought credit to the industry. 

Danny Glover
Dr. James D. Anderson

Dr. Anderson is the Edward William and Jane Marr Gutgsell Professor of Education at Illinois and is an affiliate professor of history there. He is considered a leading authority on the history of African American education in the South, the history of higher education desegregation, the history of public school desegregation, and the history of African American school achievement in the 20th century.

He joined the faculty as an assistant professor in educational policy studies in 1974 and has been at the University of Illinois for the last 44 years.


Dr. Anderson is renowned in his field.


In 2012, he was selected as a Fellow for Outstanding Research by the American Educational Research Association (AERA) and received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education.


He has won numerous awards for his scholarship, including the AERA’s outstanding book award for “The Education of Blacks in the South, 1860-1935.” He serves as senior editor of the History of Education Quarterly. He was elected to the National Academy of Education in 2008. In 2013, he was selected Center for Advanced Study Professor of Education Policy, Organization and Leadership at the University of Illinois.

Dr James D. Anderson
Ron Savage

Vice President and Executive Director at Berklee College of Music 

Ron has appeared with a wide array of performers including jazz masters: James Moody, Clark Terry, Curtis Fuller, Joe Zawinul and the Czech Brno Philharmonic Orchestra, Mulgrew Miller, Cyrus Chestnut, Nnenna Freelon, Vanessa Rubin, tap dancers Jimmy Slyde, Dianne Walker, Sean Fielder, Sarah Reich, and Buster Brown, trumpeters Cecil Bridgewater, Wallace Rooney, Art Farmer, Clark Terry, vocalist Marlena Shaw, Sam Rivers, bluesman Albert King, Gary Bartz, James Williams, Marian McPartland, Cecilia Smith, Lionel Hampton, Michele Camilio, Johnny Griffin, Steve Nelson, John Medeski, Christian McBride, Sean Jones, Bill Pierce, Donald Brown, Russell Malone, Walter Beasley, and Bobby McFerrin.


Mr. Savage currently serves as Vice President and Executive Director at Berklee College of Music and along with his wife Lois directs the Ron Savage Music Academy in Cambridge MA.  Founded in 1999, RSMA is a non-profit Saturday music school dedicated to providing inner city youth with affordable music lessons and instruments.  Ron co-founded the Cambridge Jazz Foundation and the Johnny Hodges Scholarship Fund with Cambridge resident Larry Ward. 

Ron S
Lawrence Watson

Professor at Berklee College of Music and Resident Artist at the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice

Lawrence Watson, is a soulful messenger for the millennium and has been described as a modern-day Paul Robeson. As a professor at Berklee College of Music, he teaches the History and Music of Motown, Stage Performance Technique courses, The Foundations of Singing with Soul, African American Music, Culture and History, private vocal instruction and a freshman seminar on Artistry, Creativity, Inquiry and Music.  

He currently serves as the Resident Artist at the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice. In that capacity he provides music to complement the various conferences and seminars sponsored by the Institute. Kay Bourne, music critic for the Bay State Banner writes: "This powerful baritone, who easily swoops up to the tenor range, sings with a groovy beat lyrics that convey messages smoothly delivered yet relevant to the Black cause. He is the respected inheritor of the Great Black Music tradition of blues, jazz and gospel, but his own man too."


Mr. Watson has been a special guest with billing on concerts with Al Green, Smokey Robinson, Oleta Adams, Little Richard, Gladys Knight, The Neville Brothers, Tata Vega, Jean Carne, and the Boston Pops Orchestra. He has also been the soloist at several events honoring three Supreme Court Justices, the honorable President Nelson Mandela, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the Honorable Reverend Desmond Tutu, Mr. Harry Belafonte, Berry Gordy and the honorable President Barack Obama.

Lawrence W
Benjamin Moynihan

(Moderator), Interim Executive Director, The Algebra Project, Inc.

Ben Moynihan is Interim Executive Director of the Algebra Project, Inc., and has been coordinating the work of the late Robert P. (Bob) Moses in various roles with the project since 1992. Moses used the organizing approach he learned in the Mississippi Theatre of the Civil Rights Movement to reform mathematics instruction in underserved public schools so that all students can graduate from high school prepared for college and career mathematics studies. The Algebra Project continues this work today with schools and also collaborates with organizations, institutions and folks participating in an emerging national We the People - Math Literacy for All Alliance. Ben fosters collaboration of mathematicians, math educators, researchers in cognition, mathematics teaching and learning, and design-based implementation, gathering input from teachers, students, school system administrators, parents and community organizations. His work in these diverse contexts builds on a BA in nonWestern music at Dartmouth College (1987), Ed.M. in educational technology from Harvard Graduate School of Education (1999), training in group facilitation under Hay Group, Boston, and experiences in West Africa and the U.S. He also is co-developer of the Algebra Project’s African Drums & Ratios Curriculum materials for late elementary grades (1992-2000). 

Benjmin Moynihan
Maisha Moses

(Moderator), Executive Director of the Young People’s Project

Since 1991 my work with the Algebra Project (AP) and then Young People’s Project (YPP) has focused on broadening the participation of groups underrepresented in science, mathematics, engineering, and technology.  From 1991 – 1995 I worked for the Algebra Project in Oakland CA with the math department of a local junior high school, where I provided classroom support for students and teachers, instructional guidance in the use of the AP Transition Curriculum, and helped to lead efforts to establish an Algebra for all policy in the school.  In 1993 I began training and coaching teachers in AP schools across the country in the use of the Transition Curriculum, which led to becoming certified as a national trainer for the AP, becoming co-Coordinator of the AP National Training of Trainers Program, and involved training trainers and developing a competency model for Teachers and Trainers (the AP Model of Excellence). In 1997 I began supporting the development of YPP math literacy workers by applying the training principles from the AP to the challenge of developing a training program for peer instructional leaders in YPP, for the purpose of developing young people from our constituent population, who are equipped with the skills and competencies to facilitate experiential learning activities in mathematics for their younger peers. In 2003 I began doing this work as a YPP employee, and from 2005 - 2010 focused on formalizing the training model and developing a YPP trainer training program through work supported by NSF/ISE (award # 0515589), producing a formal 2-week training institute, training materials, and an ongoing development and certification process for trainers. From 2011–2014, I was a co-P.I. on YPPs NSF/ITEST award (#1031633), which introduced coding to YPPs near peer learning and teaching model. I became YPP Co-Director in 2010, and in 2013 the Executive Director.

Maisha Moses
Adrian Walker

(Moderator), Columnist, Associate Editor, The Boston Globe

Adrian Walker writes a twice-weekly column, focusing on politics and local news. A native of Miami, he joined the Globe in 1989 as a general assignment reporter, after three years at the Miami News. He was the Globe’s City Hall bureau chief, State House reporter and deputy political editor before becoming a Metro columnist in 1998. Walker was a member of the Globe Spotlight Team that was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for local reporting in 2018 for the series “Boston. Race. Image. Reality.” He was named an associate editor of the Globe in 2021.

Adrian Walker
Joan T. Wynne
Joan T. Wynne

(Moderator), Co-Founder of the Bob Moses Research Center for Math Literacy Through Public Education, Florida International University

Joan T. Wynne, Ph.D. is the Co-Founder of the Bob Moses Research Center for Math Literacy Through Public Education at Florida International University, and currently its Acting Director. She is a former Associate Director of two Urban Centers, one at GSU in Atlanta and one in Miami at FIU, where she was a professor in Educational Leadership. She has published research studies in professional journals and books; her recent book is: "Reckoning with our Roots: Unearthing injustice to find our way home."  In 2000, she received the “Martin Luther King Jr. Peace Award” for work in anti-racism, and in 2015 received an Urban Affairs Association-SAGE Activist Scholar Award.

Rachel Williams -Giordano
 Rachel Williams -Giordano

Teacher, Cambridge Rindge and Latin

Rachel Williams -Giordano is a high school social science teacher at Cambridge Rindge and Latin. Since joining the staff in 2019, she has taught primarily AP United States History, AP United States Government and Politics and just recently launched the new AP African American Studies Pilot. Prior to working at CRLS, Rachel worked at Melrose High School as a history teacher as well as a student government co-advisor. Given her prior experience in leadership through the Army ROTC, Rachel decided to pursue a second graduate degree in education administration. She worked in various leadership roles at Melrose including assistant to the Athletic Director before transitioning to a new teaching position at Boston Collegiate Charter School. For five years, Rachel revised the curriculum for the 9th grade Global Studies class while also acting as an internship advisor and the prom coordinator. In addition to curriculum development and planning school wide events, Rachel also led the 9th grade teaching team and acted as a mentor for developing teachers. In 2017, Rachel was invited to take part in a principal fellowship through UP Academy and was placed at UP Academy Oliver. During this time, she was able to coordinate family engagement activities, support the development of new hires, and supervised new initiatives. Towards the end of the fellowship, Rachel was offered the position of principal at Match Charter School where she acted as the instructional leader and supervisor of staff and students. Although she enjoyed the duties of leading a school, Rachel is the mother of two small children and decided to make the transition back into the classroom to provide more support for her family. Working at Cambridge Rindge and Latin has enabled Rachel to take on leadership roles while also providing quality instruction to her students. She has taken on additional responsibilities such as mentors for student teachers for Harvard University and Brandeis University while also acting as a union representative as well as a co-chair for the Faculty Advisory Committee

bottom of page