May News
President's note:

Many of us at Impact DC had the privilege this past month of becoming acquainted with the work of two remarkable and accomplished young women. Though not in the field of education, both of these women are, in fact, educators. Please do listen to Adam Grant's podcast featuring Impact DC founding member Tyece Wilkins, and do order and read Black Broadway in Washington, DC, by local author Briana Thomas. I promise you this will be time well spent.

And be sure to sign up below for our first Meet the Finalists event on June 24th!

Best wishes to all as we head into the summer season,
Ann Vaughn
Tyece Wilkins is a founding member of Impact100 DC. She is also the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Manager at BAE Systems, a US aerospace and defense company. Immediately following the murder of George Floyd in May of 2020, Tyece wrote and sent an email to the 600 members of BAE’s Black Employee Resource Group. Her letter was a heartbreaking, eloquent outpouring of grief and a powerful call to action. Said Tyece, “I believe our words have power, our stories have strength, and silence absolutely will not serve us.” 

Tyece was recently featured on WorkLife with Adam Grant – a podcast that is part of the Ted Audio Collective. The podcast came about thanks to Dana Rixter, another Impact DC founding member and a good friend and colleague of Tyece’s. As Director of DEI Culture and Retention, Dana asked Tyece to share her story with Adam Grant and talk about the work they’re doing together to advance DEI efforts with BAE.

BAE Systems, like almost every corporation in the country, has had a diversity and equity initiative in place for years. But Tyece’s email was a game changer. Said one BAE leader, “Everything that happened after that letter is probably the strongest body of work I have seen in my company in my twelve years. Period. I’m talking about workforce impact and raising the bar that inspired people to get involved, not just sit on the sidelines.”

Anti-bias training is, according to studies, generally ineffective. BAE Systems’ program has had measurable success. Individuals can and do make the difference. I encourage everyone to listen here (“How to Bust Bias at Work” - May 18, 2021).
Conversation with Author Briana Thomas
On June 20th we had the pleasure of speaking with Briana Thomas, author of Black Broadway in Washington, DC. Briana weaves together facts, images, and narratives to tell the remarkable story of the U Street corridor from early reconstruction through its heyday as an unparalleled black intellectual, musical, entrepreneurial, and entertainment center. Briana’s storytelling is full of “ordinary heroes” who made an extraordinary impact – stories of “triumph,” as she puts it. She hopes she has conveyed this history in the kind of vivid way that will make one “unable to deny it.”

All of us who have read this book loved it and recommend it as essential reading for everyone who calls the DC area home. You might consider this for a summer Saturday afternoon: reading Black Broadway over a half smoke at Ben’s Chili Bowl, followed by a saunter past the historical Industrial Bank, and then a stop for some flowers at Lee’s Flower Shop – a nod to the three black businesses, out of 300 in the heyday, still thriving on U Street. Listen to our book talk session with Briana here. The book is available here. 
Update from Sharon Dennis, Grants Chair
I write this as our focus area committees wrap up their site visits, an integral part of the grant review process that, like everything else this year, had to be done virtually. While we couldn’t be physically on site, our nonprofit partners absolutely used the opportunity to bring their written proposals to life for us. We met the Executive Directors, board members, program people at all levels, and the beneficiaries of many of these inspiring organizations. Many of us went on virtual tours of program spaces and enjoyed videos of the sights and sounds of the projects we are considering. All of it was truly inspiring.  

As we move to our final FAC meeting dates, we chairs know that the decision-making process will be very difficult. We have had the privilege of learning about so many remarkable programs and projects - about so many imaginative, new ideas to open up systems that have long been unofficially closed to people of color and that promise to raise up some of our most marginalized community members. 

We invite you to join us at our Meet the Finalists virtual event on Thursday, June 24th, at 5:30 PM. Register here.
Upcoming Member Events
Mark Your Calendars for these three member events!

June 24th, 5:30pm - Meet the Finalists Event (Register here.)

August 26th, 5:00 pm - Backyard gathering

September 23rd, 5:30pm - Annual Celebration
Membership Directory
We have heard from many members that they would like us to make a membership directory available. We are beginning a process to put together a shared document available only to members who opt in. Please click here to opt in or opt out.
Volunteer Needs
Do you have a little spare time? We could use your talents in the following areas:
  • Database Management
  • Marketing and Communications
  • Event Planning
Member Survey
At Impact100 DC, we are working hard to build an inclusive and diverse community. To measure our progress towards this important goal, we have created a demographic survey to learn more about our members. 

Please help us by taking 60 seconds to complete the survey. The information we receive will help us plan strategically with regard to membership development efforts that need to reach into every corner of the DC metro region.  Rest assured your answers will never be shared. (The information we receive will help us be more effective in our outreach and recruiting efforts.)  Thanks in advance for your help! Click here to get started.
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Impact100 DC
PO Box 40121
Washington, DC 20016

Phone: 202 379-4773