After a national Request for Proposals process, the WIAE Team was selected to partner with the Center for Action and Contemplation (CAC) on it's Race, Equity and Inclusion initiative. Located in Albuquerque, New Mexico, CAC's Mission is to "open the door for a critical mass of spiritual seekers to experience the transformative wisdom of the Christian contemplative tradition and nurture its emergence in service to the healing of our world". This 18-month long organizational culture change process consisting of Pre-design, Design, Learning & Prototyping and Implementation Planning phases of work. Our team collaborated with staff at all levels of the organization, including with its founder, Fr. Richard Rohr, recognized by Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly as "one of the most popular spirituality authors and speakers in the world." WIAE team helped build the CAC's confidence and skill in talking about race, as well as in operationalizing racial equity strategies in its internal culture, operations, and outward-facing programs.
When the Insight Center for Community Economic Development, The Roosevelt Institute, The Institute on Assets and Social Policy and Liberation in A Generation needed process expertise for an upcoming high-stakes meeting of leading policy experts, community organizers, and strategists concerning racial wealth inequality, they sought out the services of Weekes In Advance Enterprises. Our team collaborated with a team of representatives from the host organizations to plan, co-design, and facilitate a day-long input gathering and strategic thinking session around messaging and systems change strategies about "the racial wealth gap". Our team also provided content management services -- notetaking of the salient discussion points, decisions, and content flow of the meeting. What could have been a dry, dull, depleting day was by all counts an interactive, generative, and energizing time of field building and collective sense-making.
Similarly, Auburn Seminary -- whose tag line is "trouble the waters, heal the world" -- tapped our team to support its invitation-only, 2.5-day gathering, in Oakland, CA for 140 social justice leaders and practitioners of faith, spirit and moral courage to reflect on the quality of our relationships (with Spirit, ourSelves and each other) as those engaged in social justice movements, The overall goal was to create an experience of rejuvenation and healing for those who are healers and caretakers social justice movement spaces. We created a space for those gathered to wrestle with, unpack, and embody the theme: Mountaintop: Living a Movement Life, using a quote from activist adrienne marie brown's Emergent Strategy as our centering frame. The multi-modal experience design, on-site facilitation, and graphic recording services we were able to render in support of our client's bold vision were truly remarkable -- in large part buoyed by the creative leadership and deep relationship of trust we enjoyed with our client-partners at Auburn Seminary.
Our client, The Alliance for Media Arts and Culture, had the brilliant idea to host a strategy development meeting during the week of the Tribeca Film Festival when most of the members of its Board of Directors would be in town anyway for the Tribeca Film Festival. With our process support, the group was able to re-fresh its Vision, Mission, and Core Values statements, perform a SWOT analysis, and identify its strategic areas of focus for the next 3 years. This solid work session provided their staff with all they needed to take it from there, creating their full strategic plan document, 2020Vision.
Whether its Columbia University's Center for African American Religion, Sexual Politics and Social Justice, the New York Community Trust's Mosaic Network and Fund, or a grassroots-led community of practice dubbed Old Money New System, our team is adept at providing our clients with astute process design of planning and convening meetings, working with clients to help them understand their unique role as a convenor, coaching around sensitive personnel matters and handling complex meeting design, facilitation and note-taking for convenings of all sizes. For the Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church, our services were sought out to support their Multi-faith Initiative to End Mass Incarceration [pictured to the Left]. Our team was key partners with them in developing a strategy to animate and enlist diverse religious institutions, faith leaders, and persons of faith across the country as a unique coalition to support the movement to end mass incarceration in the U.S. As the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is one of our inspirations for the work we do, it was the honor of a lifetime for our team to be enlisted in support this bold justice effort sponsored by his home church, and in our headquarters hometown city of Atlanta, GA.
I enjoy serving as Mistress of Ceremonies for arts, faith-based, social justice, and other celebratory occasions. For example, it was my deep joy to be the M.C. for Tyrone Birkett & Emancipation's C.D. release: "Postmodern Spirituals: The Promised Land" at MIST in New York City's Harlem neighborhood.
I am a commentator on topics of social concern and current events for media outlets, podcasts, panels, and panels. I have been a featured commentator for diverse outlets and events such as MssngPieces' "Together" series, the Wesleyan Univesity Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship, and the Walnut Hill School of the Arts.
Having been deeply formed by the Black Church tradition, attended seminary, and having served on the ministerial staffs of churches in Boston, New York City, and Atlanta, I am at home in a variety of worship experiences and ministry settings. While I view all of my vocational work as a ministry, as ordained Christian clergy, it gives me great joy to deliver sermons, teach Bible studies, and lead worship experiences in congregational, conference, and small group settings.