Diversity

"Forward 50" honors Berman Jewish Policy Archive's director

"Forward 50" honors Berman Jewish Policy Archive's director

Steven M. Cohen

"The Forward 50" consists of "people whose religious and cultural values propelled them to engage, create and lead in a decidedly Jewish voice." Among the newly announced honorees: GOP congressman Eric Cantor, Supreme Court Justice Elana Kagan, Google co-founder Sergey Brin - and sociologist Steven M. Cohen, Director of the Berman Jewish Policy Archive at NYU Wagner.

BJBA recently collaborated on a case study of the Jewish community in the U.S., entitled "Baby Boomers, Public Service, and Minority Communities."

"The Color Bind," Co-Authored by Erica Gabrielle Foldy, Debuts at NYU Wagner

"The Color Bind," Co-Authored by Erica Gabrielle Foldy, Debuts at NYU Wagner

Erica Gabrielle Foldy and Tamara R. Buckley’s The Color Bind: Talking (and Not Talking) About Race at Work investigates a stubborn American phenomenon: The taboo nature of race in our work places – and how to transcend it.

Just published by the Russell Sage Foundation, The Color Bind was the focus of a well-attended dialogue held at NYU Wagner on Feb. 26. The conversation included the co-authors as well as Melody Barnes, Senior Fellow at NYU Wagner and Vice Provost for Global Student Leadership Initiatives at New York University. Wagner and its Research Center for Leadership in Action (RCLA) co-sponsored the book launch. More than 125 people attended, filling all the seats in the Rudin Family Forum for Civic Dialogue and enlivening the audience Q&A portion of the program.

Foldy is Associate Professor of Public and Nonprofit Management at Wagner;  Buckley is Associate Professor of Counseling at Hunter College and Psychology at The Graduate Center, City University of New York.  Their in-depth book grew out of Foldy's direct observation, over many months, of child welfare workers at one social services agency. At first she anticipated that, given the nature of their work, child welfare case workers would bring discussions of race into their team meetings readily. Instead, she found “the color bind” operating in full force, blunting the creativity, morale, and effectiveness of the teams.

One team at the agency, however, broached race and ethnicity regularly, without signs of defensiveness or worries of recrimination. Professors Foldy and Buckley dug into what made this team unique, gleaning some crucial lessons for social service organizations, advocacy groups, public agencies, schools, health providers, and many others.

In any organization, be it in the nonprofit, public, or private sector, the journey out of “the color bind” begins with mindfulness by its leaders that race matters. That’s the initial step towards fostering an atmosphere where employees can discuss fraught topics freely, and where “cultural competency,” or having the skills to communicate about race, ethnicity, and culture, can be developed, the authors said.

“Race is ever-present,” said Buckley. “The taboo of it often keeps us quiet about it. What we’re trying to do is show the assets that race brings to us in all the different kinds of conversations that we have.”

Professor Buckley, who is African American, and Professor Foldy, who is white, surfaced their own sometimes-clashing perspectives about race during the writing process. But in crossing lines that often keep others separated, both of them found that they could deepen their knowledge and advance their shared mission.

Talking about race is rarely smooth or simple, Foldy explained. “If you are going to enter this territory, you have to live with the fact that you are going to make mistakes.”

The Color Bind is published by the Russell Sage Foundation.

 

       

Fellowship for Social Sector Leadership Diversity Applications Now Open

Fellowship for Social Sector Leadership Diversity Applications Now Open

The People of Color Leadership Network at NYU Wagner’s Research Center for Leadership in Action is now accepting applications for the Fellowship for Social Sector Leadership Diversity.

The fellowship is a 16-month leadership development program designed to build a diverse pipeline of NYU graduate students who are poised to take on leadership positions in direct service, philanthropy, advocacy, public policy and politics, social entrepreneurship and public service management and consulting.

The fellowship aims to :

  • nurture diverse students' commitment to public service;
  • build their capacity for collaborative and adaptive leadership in the social sector; and
  • help them form supportive networks to bolster and sustain their work as social sector leaders.

The program is open to NYU graduate students who are passionate about public service leadership. Students who identify as members of racial and ethnic groups that are underrepresented in social sector leadership are strongly encouraged to apply.

All application materials are due by Noon EST on Friday, January 10, 2014.

Learn more and apply now

 

Furman Center Report Finds Fewer New Mortgages Go to Blacks and Hispanics

Furman Center Report Finds Fewer New Mortgages Go to Blacks and Hispanics

A new report by the Furman Center for Real Estate & Urban Policy, a joint initiative of the New York University School of Law and the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service at NYU, shows that the number of new mortgates to blacks and  Hispanics plummeted in New York  City in 2007. Meanwhile, according to the report, released in October, 2008, that total held steady for white borrowers.

The report found that risky high-interest loans declined -- a silver lining, according to the researchers, who used data released in September, 2008 under the Federal Home Mortgage Disclosure Act.

The Furman Center is dedicated to providing objective academic and empirical research on the legal and public policy issues involving land use, real estate, housing and urban affairs in the United States, with a particular focus on New York City. Its Director is Law School  Professor Vicki L. Been of the Law School and its Co-director is Professor Ingrid Gould Ellen of NYU Wagner. 

To read the report and related news coverage, please click below.

Inaugural IGNITE Institute Convenes Women of Color in Social Sector

Inaugural IGNITE Institute Convenes Women of Color in Social Sector

All 31 members of the inaugural class of the IGNITE Fellowship for Women of Color in the Social Sector ­– a leadership program for women of color at nonprofits, newly launched by NYU Wagner’s Research Center for Leadership  in Action (RCLA) -- gathered in New York City for a kick-off institute that stretched from August 1-6.

The IGNITE institute, organized by Toni Harris, Director of Career Services and Alumni Relations at Wagner, and Director of the IGNITE Fellowship, began with a welcome reception in the NYU President’s Penthouse in Washington Square. The evening included a lively and bracing discussion with Irshad Manji, director of the Moral Courage Project at NYU Wagner. Manji is the author of the international bestseller The Trouble with Islam Today: A Muslim’s Call for Reform in Her Faith, creator of the Emmy-nominated PBS documentary, Faith Without Fear, and she most recently authored Allah, Liberty & Love. Speaking to the IGNITE fellows, she shared  hard-won lessons on creating work-life balance for herself and her team –  a process she said was anchored in daily meditation, and propelled by the vitality and fulfillment that comes from working to turn a  vision into a reality.

The following day’s events took place at NYU Wagner and included an overview of findings from a decade of research on social change leadership delivered by RCLA Faculty Director Sonia Ospina, as well as a luncheon with a panel of women leading organizations across sectors in New York City.

 Speakers  included:

         - Analisa Leonor Balares, founder and CEO of Womensphere

         - Ana Oliveira, President and CEO of The New York Women’s Foundation  

          - Arva Rice, President and CEO of the New York Urban League

          - Fatima A. Shama, Commissioner of the New York City Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs

 NYU Wagner Assistant Dean of Fiscal Operations and Human Resources Trena Drayton, moderated the panel discussion.  The conversation traced the women’s leadership journeys, from when they first considered themselves leaders, to key moments that have influenced their leadership styles and directions, to leadership challenges they are each facing currently. Key themes included the important role leaders play in convening stakeholders to find solutions, recognizing moments of opportunity in moments of crisis, and the assets that leaders of color, in particular, gain from navigating cultures while remaining grounded in the affirmation of “home” relationships and communities.

 “The energy in the room crystallized the continued value of conversations like these,” said Drayton. “People of color, especially women, benefit greatly from candid, informed dialogue around matters that are often left unspoken.”

 Following the events at Wagner, the Fellows travelled to Old Greenwich, Connecticut, for four days of robust leadership and management sessions and a chance to build a strong network. In the coming nine months, the Fellows will continue to sharpen their leadership skills with the support of cohort members and Fellowship managers.

 Offered with support from the American Express Foundation, IGNITE is a nine-month program that offers a diverse group of mid-career women directing nonprofit programs and organizations across the United States exposure to best practices, processes for building personal and organizational leadership, and opportunities to build and strengthen core management capacities.

 The program is sponsored by RCLA’s People of Color Leadership Network, which strengthens communities of color by supporting leadership by and for people of color.

 Learn more about IGNITE: http://wagner.nyu.edu/leadership/leadership_dev/pocln/ignite

 Learn more about RCLA’s People of Color Leadership Network: http://wagner.nyu.edu/leadership/leadership_dev/pocln


Irshad Manji Speaks on the Meaning of Moral Courage

Irshad Manji Speaks on the Meaning of Moral Courage

NYU Wagner's Irshad Manji engaged an audience of 500 people at the University's Helen and Martin Kimmel Center for University Life in a discussion on the dynamics of Islam and faith in the modern world. She focused her remarks on her work as a woman who prominently questions interpretations of established religion.

The discussion on March 27, 2008 was entitled "Faith Without Fear: An Evening with Muslim Reformer Irshad Manji." The NYU Women's Initiative was the sponsor.

As founding director of the Moral Courage Project at NYU Wagner's Research Center for Leadership in Action (RCLA), Manji's current mission is to develop leaders who will challenge political correctness, self-censorship, and intellectual conformity.

She is an award-winning journalist, filmmaker and human rights activist. Her international best-seller, "The Trouble with Islam Today: A Muslim's Call for Reform in Her Faith," has been published in more than 30 countries including, this month, Indonesia.

 

Look Hard at Legacy of 'Heroic Leadership,' urges RCLA executive director

Look Hard at Legacy of 'Heroic Leadership,' urges RCLA executive director

Bethany Godsoe, executive director of NYU Wagner's Research Center on Leadership and Action, examines what she calls the "bravado of heroic leadership," and its troubling legacy, in an essay inspired by her participation in the National Urban Fellows' "Call to Action Summit on Diversity" held Apr. 21 in Washington, D.C.

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