By Phil Haslanger Over the course of three evenings in Justified Anger’s “Black History for a New Day,” I ventured into the west African coast prior to the beginnings of the slave trade. Then the Portuguese launched what would become a huge – and immoral – enterprise in collusion with African rulers. I […]
By Harry Hawkins Transformations are happening all around us. The winter grays are disappearing, replaced by the blues of springs. The grass shakes off the dull brown of winter in exchange for vibrant greens. The same type of life changing transformations is happening with our students through the leadership of Ozanne Anderson in our ACE […]
By Harry Hawkins
Can a moment change your life? That was the topic of conversation as I spoke with Anthony Cooper, Director of Re-entry for Nehemiah, and a facilitator of the program. They talked about a young man named James*, a participant in the Man-Up Program. The men of the group meet every Tuesday and Thursday and have a chance to unpack negative emotions, receive encouragement, and instruction on how to reclaim their life.
It was during one of these sessions that Anthony Cooper said “James experienced a moment. It defined the reversal of his life and his approach to living”.
Nehemiah’s ACE Program (Academic Center for Excellence) is preparing for Summer of 2017. There are a number of employment opportunities available on our employment page. The camp runs seven weeks in July and August. Nehemiah’s Vision: Engaging the greater Madison community to empower African American individuals, families and communities to bring about hope, transformation, and […]
by Harry Hawkins November 9, 2016. A day marked with emotions. Some reveled in their candidate’s victory. Others mourned the losses accrued the night before. People tweeted, made posts on Facebook, conversed over coffee and made memes to share online. In Madison, there were some who saw the election of 2016 as a blow to […]
Equity in Education Requires Changing Narratives, Sharing Power
By Phil Haslanger
If you are going to have a conversation with Shahanna McKinney-Baldon about student achievement, you will learn quickly that simple words and simple answers will not get our schools very far in helping students achieve their highest potential.
McKinney-Baldon is no stranger to these conversations. She is currently the director of professional learning for the Minority Student Achievement Network (MSAN) at the UW Wisconsin Center for Education Research.
She brings to that a background experience as a classroom teacher for 15 years in the Milwaukee Public Schools and administrative positions in a range of educational settings, including serving as chief diversity officer and director of family and community engagement for the Madison Metropolitan School District.
By Harry Hawkins Racial Bias is like your scent; it travels with you everywhere. Because this is true, understanding yourself is the first step in cultural competence. As we move forward together in taking a look at the racial disparity in the education system, it is imperative that we understand what enters into the […]
Five generations enrich Madison
By Phil Haslanger
It’s a family whose life in Madison stretches across five generations, across almost a century.
It’s a family whose work has touched health care and business, education and public safety, church and culture.
It’s a family whose matriarch came to Madison and did domestic work and who saw each succeeding generation reach wider and higher to shape the life of the community.
Mamie Matthews came to Madison from Mississippi in the mid-1920s and eventually worked as a domestic for the vice president of the bus company.
One of her 10 children was Addrena Squires, born here in 1927 at what was then Madison General Hospital. In time, Addrena gave birth in 1951 to Mona Adams, among other children. Mona, in turn gave birth to Johnny Winston, Jr. in 1968. And now Johnny Jr. has four kids of his own – two grown, two in Madison public schools.
There were other children in each generation, of course, but these stories of one family tell how this family shaped Madison and how Madison was shaped by them.
By Jake Winkler
What’s the atheist doing in the church basement? There’s no wedding. It’s Wednesday morning.
Maybe it’s better to ask what a white kid from rural Wisconsin is doing talking race with a black
pastor. Better yet: why aren’t more white people talking race with more white people? Reverend
Gee thinks a big part of it is education due to the positive response to his Justified Anger history
class. Maybe my story and some education will help that talk.
I was raised colorblind, just barely young enough to be a millenial, not old enough to remember
the Crack Scare of the ‘80s, old enough to have heard Clinton called the first black president
and not really knowing what that meant. The people of color I knew went to my Lutheran high
school or my university or were co-workers at a software company or played rugby with me.
They carried some recognizable class markers like similar affluence and education. In other
words, they came into my world. I didn’t go to theirs.
By Lisa Speckhard
This fall, Nehemiah started a training and support program to grow and support black leaders in the Madison community.
One of the stated five focus areas of Justified Anger is leadership and capacity development; Our Madison Plan states that Justified Anger wants to “increase the number of African-Americans in leadership positions in a variety of fields in Madison businesses and institutions.” Nehemiah’s Leadership and Community Development Institute (LCDI) has begun to equip its first cohort of black leaders.