ICYMI! On July 19 we launched our Humanitarian Brunch celebration online. COVID-19 prevented us from honoring our awardees in-person this year, but we pivoted and took the opportunity to reach a wider audience and highlight their amazing work in our community.
Inclusive Communities submitted comments in support of Omaha City Council Agenda Items 8 and 9, which held a Public Hearing for discussion and Vote on July 14, 2020. Both Resolutions were passed.

Both of these Resolutions speak to the need to correct inequalities on the basis of race, income, sex and ability that currently exist in our city. We believe that in passing these Resolutions the Omaha City Council has taken important steps that are both symbolic and substantive, and we look forward to the next steps.
The Resolutions are as follows:
RES. 2020-0677 – Res. that, the Omaha City Council provides this Resolution as a public platform to engage all of our citizens in a discussion of positive action steps to address racism, injustice, inequality, economic disparities, and police-community relations

RES. 2020-0678 – Res. that, the City Council of the City of Omaha urges the Nebraska State Legislature to place a ballot question before Nebraska voters at a primary or general election to repeal the ban on affirmative action in employment and contracting in Nebraska’s political subdivisions.
T his month we made some changes to our Inclusive Communities Team. We announced the departure of John-Paul Gurnett, who has moved on to spend more time focusing on his work in the Arts around Justice and Equity which includes continuing his role as the Communications Director at Benson First Fridays (BFF) Omaha.
Colin's Been Promoted to Program Partner!
Colin McGrew, started at Inclusive Communities as a Program Associate, and has been a part of the Inclusive Communities team for just under a year. In that time he’s shown an incredible gift for connecting with people. He is an active listener and learner, and truly embodies the heart and soul of the work we do. Colin has been responsible for our volunteer coordination and we love the relationship he’s developed with all our volunteers, how well he relates to them on an individual level, and the variety of ways he keeps everyone engaged in our conversations and programming. He has certainly increased our capacity for community with our youth and volunteer base.

In the context of COVID-19, Colin’s work has become even more valuable as he’s responded to the urgency of this reality by holding space virtually for our volunteers to ensure that they still have that mentorship and community. He’s also launched a volunteer-specific newsletter, the IC Insider . In his new capacity he will continue his mentorship and the building of our successful youth and volunteer base, while making our IncluCity, youth, and middle school programming more robust. This expansion of Colin’s role is a direct reflection of the hard work, passion, and dedication that he has displayed from day one.
Welcome Krysty!
Krysty joined the team in April 2020, as a social media contractor and is now our new Communications Manager. She has spent the past 7 years doing strategic communications work for clients in Haiti, the Dominican Republic, and her country of origin, Trinidad and Tobago. Most recently, she consulted on a campaign for a Nebraska State Legislature candidate.

Before moving to Nebraska, Krysty worked for the Local Government Ministry in Trinidad and Tobago where she supported the creation of legislation for reform. She holds a doctorate in International Relations from Florida International University and has a research specialization in foreign policy analysis and security studies in relation to drug trafficking in the Western Hemisphere.

You can usually find Krysty exploring the great outdoors, cooking up a storm, or trying to pet every dog. She currently lives in Dundee with her husband Christian and their two dogs, Levi and Zulu.
New Advocate *Alert*
We received 81 applications for our 2020/21 LeadDIVERSITY Cohort. It was a tough process, but we've chosen 36 brand new advocates to start the program in September!

These new Advocates comprise an inclusive sample of Omaha’s diverse community representing every racial identity. Of the participants, 64% identify as Black, Indigenous/Native, People of Color (BIPOC). In addition, 65% of participants identify as female, while 35% identify as male and 4 self-identify as part of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer or Questioning, Intersex, Asexual, Two Spirit (LGBTQIA2S+) community. The cohort is also a mix of various industries including corporate, nonprofit, public sector/government, education, healthcare, and the service industry. 
Hello Advocates!
Donna Aman, Executive Director, Outlook Enrichment
Christina Arellano, Inclusion and Diversity Experience Ambassador, Signature Performance Inc.
Kimberly C. Barnes, Omaha Healthy Start Program Manager, Charles Drew Health Center
Deana Blount, Site Director, Boys & Girls Club of the Midlands
Damien Coran, Program and Curriculum Supervisor, Partnership 4 Kids
Sarah Ericson, Director of Organizational Effectiveness, Mosaic
Eric Ewing, Executive Director, Great Plains Black History Museum
Alexander Foreman, Credit Analyst & ERG Leader 
Rebecca Forsyth, Creative Director/Master Stylist, Bungalow 8 Hairdressing
Wendy Goldberg, Executive Director, Tri-Faith Initiative
Cynthia Gooch-Grayson, Associate Vice President for Equity and Inclusion, Metropolitan Community College
Denise Hall, Member, Delta Sigma Theta
Steve Hogan, Attorney, Fraser Stryker PC LLO
Liz Kendall Weisser, Education and Community Engagement Manager, Omaha Symphony
Tracy Leavelle, Director of the Kingfisher Institute for the Liberal Arts and Professions, Creighton University
Kat Lopez, Director of Communications and Events, Centro Hispano Comunitario de Nebraska
Teresa Mardesen, Community Relations Manager, Farm Credit Services of America
Amanda Martinez, Engineering Manager/D&I Community Champion, Flywheel
Noah McClain, Product Development Manager, Mutual of Omaha
Lonnie Michael Jr., Database Marketing Manager, Mutual of Omaha
Craig Moody, Managing Partner, Verdis Group
Astrid Munn, Child and Family Managing Attorney, Immigrant Legal Center
Kathy Peissig, Senior Director of Talent Development, Werner Enterprises Inc.
Amanda Ponce, College Success Navigator, Metropolitan Community College
Lucy Puentes, Program Manager, Omaha Outward Bound School
M indy Rush Chipman, Director of Equity & Diversity, Lincoln Commission on Human Rights
Graciela Sharif, Cultural Diversity Coordinator for Leadership in Education and Neurodevelopmental and   Related Disabilities (LEND), Munroe-Meyer Institute for Genetics and Rehabilitation, UNMC
Comi Sharif, Senior Associate, Koley Jessen
Alejandra Sinecio, Board Chair, South Omaha Community Care Council
Jeffrey Southall, Assistant Director, University of Nebraska Omaha
Nicky Sullivan, Homeownership Success Coordinator, Habitat for Humanity of Omaha
Jannette Taylor, Executive Director, Social Impact Outliers
Kimberly Thomas, Executive Director, CASA for Douglas County
Ashley Rae Turner, Marketing Communications Specialist, North End Teleservices
Drew Weitz, Director of Equity Research, Portfolio Manager, Weitz Investment Management
Dan Whisler, Manager Radiation Protection & Chemistry, Omaha Public Power District
Get Involved in State or Local Government
There are currently openings on various state and local Boards and Commissions. This is a great way to improve representation and increase diversity at the decision-making level in our communities.