A Step Towards Justice: Where Do We Go From Here?

RACE TALKS: Uniting to Break the Chains of Racism
Presented by Donna Maxey and the City of Portland Office of Equity and Human Rights

A Step Towards Justice: Where Do We Go From Here?

Thursday, April 29, 2021 6:00 PM – 8:30 PM

Derek Chauvin’s guilty verdict provided our nation and community some relief as we approach the first anniversary of the murder of George Floyd. Like the rest of the country, Portland was shaken by Floyd’s killing, and it prompted our city to reexamine policing and systemic racism. In the spirit of collective healing, RACE TALKS invites you to join us for a special edition forum on Thursday, April 29, 6-8:30 p.m., where we continue to explore the P’s & Q’s of 2021.

Community leaders with widely varying perspectives will discuss topics of lawful gatherings, protest and policing, and quarantine. After the panel discussion, participants will be invited to either join the Community Feedback Breakout Rooms or a moderated Q&A. Anyone who attended the panel may stay for the moderated Q&A. The Community Feedback Breakout Rooms will be available to 150 participants only (registration will be first-come, first-served) and will allow the opportunity to provide invaluable feedback to city leaders. Join us in open dialogue to discuss how the year affected us all, and what we can do to move forward together in healing and conciliation.

If you missed the event, watch the event video below.


If you attended or watched the event, please fill out the event evaluation feedback form to let us know what you enjoyed or what we could do better.

Yearning to Breathe Free

April’s program is:

Yearning to Breathe Free: Immigration, Hate crimes, and the REAL American Dream 

Thursday, April 15, 2021 

Led by the Black Lives Matter Movement, the world rose up in protest of amid a deadly global pandemic after we witnessed the merciless murder of George Floyd at the hands of the police in May 2020. Today, incited by our 45th President’s comments blaming the Chinese for the Coronavirus pandemic, the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community needs our support as they face heightened racially motivated attacks worldwide. Join us as we discuss immigration through the intersectionality of anti-Asian rhetoric and the Asian Diaspora; the Black Lives Matter Movement and Stop Asian Hate Movement; Anti-Immigrant sentiment faced by our communities and much more.

Women in Cannabis: An Untapped Market

event poster

March’s program is:

Women in Cannabis: An Untapped Market 

Thursday, March 18, 2021 

In 2018, RACE TALKS hosted, “Overturning Marijuana Convictions: Equitizing Marijuana Convictions for the Poor and People of Color.” This month, we discuss the new “Green Rush,” and explore the disproportional access that BIPOC have to the cannabis industry, especially Black people who remain incarcerated. The legalization of cannabis in 30+ states, and the impending federal legalization have given way to innovative and lucrative business opportunities derived wholly from cannabis. At the forefront of this new wealth creation are CIS white men, so we shift the focus for WOmen’s History Month to four Black women who are boldly pioneering their own path to level the cannabis playing field.

If you attended the event or watched the event on FB Live, please fill out the Evaluation Form so we can continue to improve our events.

The Presence and Impact of Trans BIPOC in Societal Uprising & Change

February’s program is:

Leading the Nation in Protest, Defunding, and Activism: Portland’s Community Update on Police Reform 

Thursday, Feb 18, 2021 

As a group, LGBTQIP2SAA+, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Questioning, Queer, Intersex, Pansexual, Two-Spirit (2S), Androgynous and Asexual+, AKA the Rainbow Community, have traditionally been the least understood kinship in the US. However, their activism has led to changes that we are continuing to see with this newly elected administration. The 2020 Presidential debates, November elections, and 2021 installation of the President’s Cabinet bear witness to the decades of activism of the Rainbow Community.

In 2018, RACE TALKS hosted “CROSSING OVER: Transgender People of Color” where our speakers shared their transition journey. Today, we are re-visited by our former speakers who will share how the Rainbow Community’s activism has evolved; and how they, as BIPOC, Black, Indigenous, People of Color, are leading that (r)evolution.

If you attended the event or watched the event on FB Live, please fill out the February Evaluation Form so we can continue improving our events.

P’s & Q’s of 2021

(Updated to include event video)

Event poster

RACE TALKS is hosting its 109th forum and 5th month of virtual programming.
November’s program is:

P’s & Q’s of 2021: What are the next steps for politics and quarantine?

Our forum has changed to reflect the current events surrounding the Coronavirus pandemic and racial uprisings happening globally. Through facilitated breakout groups, attendees will have an opportunity to share how they have been impacted personally and professionally by the pandemic and what role politics is played in our daily life. This session will be both informative and a bit like group therapy.

And be sure to take the RACE TALKS IQ Quiz (above) to find out YOUR racial IQ.

Date: November 19th
Time: 7p-9:15p

If you participated in the live event or just watched the Facebook Live video, we invite you to fill out the event evaluation form.

Back to School During COVID-19

(Updated to include event video)

August Race Talks poster with image of children sitting outside

RACE TALKS is hosting its 107th forum and 3rd month of virtual programming

August’s program is: 

“Back to School During COVID-19” 

Guest Speakers:

DR. LISA MCCALL — Asst. Superintendent, Tigard-Tualatin SD

JORGE MEZA — K-6 Principal, Centennial School District

KATHERINE WATKINS — Jr. and Sr. High Teacher, Beaverton School District

PAULA DE PASSE — 5th Grade Teacher, Portland Public SD

As COVID-19 continues to rage across the United States, BIPOC communities are disproportionately impacted by high numbers of unemployment, under-funded schooling, inadequate health care, a limited number of housing resources, and deaths. We will discuss the controversy and concerns of sending students and teachers back to school under perilous conditions. Four BIPOC Educators from the Portland-Metro area will weigh in on how they are preparing themselves and their communities to go back to school this fall.

If you participated in the live event or just watched the Facebook Live video, we invite you to fill out the event evaluation form.

Main Breakout Room with DR. LISA MCCALL — Asst. Superintendent, Tigard-Tualatin SD

PreK-3rd Grade Breakout Room with JORGE MEZA — K-6 Principal, Centennial School District

4th-6th Grade Breakout Room with PAULA DE PASSE — 5th Grade Teacher, Portland Public SD

High School Breakout Room with KATHERINE WATKINS — Jr. and Sr. High Teacher, Beaverton School District

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Protecting Your Mental Health in the Time of COVID & Racial Upliftment

(Updated to include event video)

RACE TALKS is hosting its 105th forum and second month of virtual programming

July’s program is: 

“PROTECTING YOUR MENTAL HEALTH IN THE TIME OF COVID & RACIAL UPLIFTMENT” 

Featured Speaker: Dr. Shea Lott, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at OHSU and Licensed Clinical Neuropsychologist at the Avel Gordly Center for Healing 

****JULY FEATURES AFFINITY BREAKOUT DISCUSSIONS****

In July, RACE TALKS we offered three levels of community dialogue for attendees to engage one another during breakout discussions. 

Please take the quiz (find it above) to determine which forum best suits your personal understanding and awareness about race and racism (RACE TALKS IQ).

July 9, 2020: Introductory Level

If you participated in the live event or just watched the Facebook Live video, we invite you to fill out the event evaluation form.

July 16, 2020: Intermediate Level

If you participated in the live event or just watched the Facebook Live video, we invite you to fill out the event evaluation form.

July 23, 2020: Advanced Level


If you participated in the live event or just watched the Facebook Live video, we invite you to fill out the event evaluation form.

SUPPORT RACE TALKS WITH A CONTRIBUTION