Featured Keynotes, Practitioner & Collaborators
Ruha Benjamin (she/her) is the Alexander Stewart 1886 Professor of African American Studies at Princeton University, founding director of the Ida B. Wells Just Data Lab, and author of the award-winning book Race After Technology: Abolitionist Tools for the New Jim Code, among many other publications. Her work investigates the social dimensions of science, medicine, and technology with a focus on the relationship between innovation and inequity, health and justice, knowledge and power. She is the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including the Marguerite Casey Foundation Freedom Scholar Award and the President’s Award for Distinguished Teaching at Princeton. Her most recent book, Viral Justice: How We Grow the World We Want, winner of the 2023 Stowe Prize, was born out of the twin plagues of COVID-19 and police violence and offers a practical and principled approach to transforming our communities and helping us build a more just and joyful world.
Clint Smith is a staff writer at The Atlantic. He is the author of the narrative nonfiction book, How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning With the History of Slavery Across America, which was a #1 New York Times Bestseller and a 2021 National Book Critics Circle Award Winner for Nonfiction, and the poetry collection Counting Descent, which won the 2017 Literary Award for Best Poetry Book from the Black Caucus of the American Library Association and was a finalist for an NAACP Image Award. He has received fellowships from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, New America, the Emerson Collective, the Art For Justice Fund, Cave Canem, and the National Science Foundation. His essays, poems, and scholarly writing have been published in The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, The New Republic, Poetry Magazine, The Paris Review, the Harvard Educational Review and elsewhere.
Autumn Brown (she, her) is a mother, artist, and movement facilitator. A student of Black feminism, freedom movements, and the solidarity economy, she is a worker-owner of AORTA, the Anti-Oppression Resource & Training Alliance, and co-host of the podcast How to Survive the End of the World. Autumn writes speculative fiction and creative non-fiction, and her work has been published in Parenting for Social Justice, Lightspeed Magazine, Pleasure Activism, Octavia’s Brood, the Procyon Science Fiction Anthology, and Revolutionary Mothering. Autumn lives in South Minneapolis with her three brilliant children.
Susan Raffo (she/her) is a writer, cultural worker and bodyworker with a personal practice who is living in Mnisota Makoce, on the unceded traditional homelands of the Dakota people, in the city of Minneapolis. Her interest is in looking at all of the layers of resourcing needed to support community and movements, from support for individual and collective bodies shaped by generational trauma and supremacy to support for infrastructures that are grounded in dignity, care and generational vision. In addition to maintaining an individual practice, Raffo has spent 12 years working with Cara Page on the Healing Histories Project, an abolitionist and anti-eugenics project working in solidarity with health and healing practitioners/workers by holding with dignity and respect the lives and communities they care for and by disrupting abuses of the state. Raffo is also a core group member of REP, a Black-led network showing up to support others in moments of crisis or urgency, with care and respect for the full dignity and autonomy of those in crisis. Raffo is the author of Queerly Classed (1997), Restricted Access (1999), and Liberated to the Bone (AK Press: 2022). Find her at www.susanraffo.com
Kimberly Brazwell, native of Columbus, OH, is the CEO and founder of KiMISTRY, which specializes in the unique intersection of trauma, justice and holistic wellness. Through writings, art, blogs, vlogs, social media content, and community conversation forums, Brazwell creates safer spaces to use story-sharing as a healing approach for strategy and engagement. She is the author of memoir Browning Pleasantville, her newly released trauma-informed journal workbook Jotnal Book – Phoenix Edition. Brazwell was a contributing author of Implicit Bias in Schools with a chapter entitled, “Practical Application of Implicit Racial Debiasing” and is working on her new manuscript, The Nine Asks. Brazwell has performed two TEDx Talks – “Over, Under, Around and Through Trauma” and “Crazy and Black and Poor”.
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