Chief Diversity Office

Preconference Workshop

“Race Dialogue Is for Everyone: Emory’s Transforming Community Project”

Based on Emory University’s Transforming Community Project, this interactive workshop will provide you with a model for employing strategies of dialogue, research and teaching to address issues of racial diversity on your campus. You will be guided in selecting components that can be implemented at your institution, including community outreach, faculty pedagogy seminars, summer research for undergraduates, and cross-status and cross-generational working groups.

The Transforming Community Project has empowered members of the Emory community, both individually and collectively, to actively address the challenges and opportunities provided by diversity.

Leslie M. Harris

Leslie M. Harris is an associate professor of history and African-American studies and the Winship Distinguished Research Professor in the Humanities at Emory University. She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in African-American history at Emory. Harris received her undergraduate degree from Columbia and her doctoral degree in U.S. history from Stanford University. She is the author of the award-winning In the Shadow of Slavery: African Americans in New York City, 1626-1863 and co-editor with Ira Berlin of Slavery in New York, which accompanied the groundbreaking 2005 New York Historical Society exhibition of the same name. In 2004, she co-founded the Transforming Community Project at Emory, which uses history to provide context to dialogues on racial and other forms of human diversity. The Transforming Community Project has received generous funding from the Emory University Strategic Plan Fund and from the Ford Foundation. Harris is working on a book on late 20th   century New Orleans.

JoNell A. (Jody) Usher

Jody Usher retired from Emory in 2011 after serving five years as co-director of Emory’s Transforming Community Project. She holds a doctorate in cognitive psychology from Emory and has served as assistant dean in three of Emory’s nine schools — the Emory College of Arts and Sciences, the Laney Graduate School and the Rollins School of Public Health. What she calls her “nonlinear career path” also placed Usher in the university president’s office to help direct the 2002 Atlanta exhibition. She is the 2009 recipient of the Emory Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Person of the Year Award. Currently, she serves as co-founder of It’s Our Privilege!, a diversity consulting firm designed to inspire inclusive leadership.