June 2023

The Power of Liberation

I hope this day finds you well, filled with a sense of hope and empowerment as we come together to uplift the idea of liberation as we close out June. This month at Inclusive Communities we embarked on a journey of reflection, education, and inspiration, honoring the resilience of those who have fought for freedom and justice throughout history.

Liberation is a word that carries immense weight and significance. It encapsulates the essence of breaking free from oppression, both on an individual and collective level. It reminds us that the human spirit is boundless, capable of overcoming even the most formidable challenges. We stand united, committed to promoting liberation in all forms and supporting those striving for a better world.

As we wrap up our Juneteenth celebrations, a day that holds deep historical significance, we honor the emancipation of enslaved African Americans in the United States. It serves as a reminder that freedom is not always easily won, and its pursuit requires unwavering dedication and relentless advocacy. Juneteenth symbolizes the triumph of hope and the power of unity, inspiring generations to come.

I have taken this time to delve into the cultural significance of Juneteenth, showcasing the vibrant traditions, music, and art that have emerged from the Black/African American community. Through this exploration, we hope to foster a sense of appreciation and respect for the diverse tapestry of cultures that make up our society.

I encourage you to join us in celebrating the promise of true liberation by engaging in open dialogue, learning from one another, and taking action to dismantle systemic barriers. Together, we can forge a more inclusive and equitable future.

Thank you for your unwavering support, which fuels our mission to confront prejudice, bigotry, and discrimination. I hope you find inspiration within the work of those in our community and Inclusive Communities and rise with us as we strive for a world where everyone can truly be free.

Cammy Watkins

Executive Director

For sponsorship opportunities, contact Lachelle Rankins, Director of Strategic Partnerships at lachelle@inclusive-communities.org.


Walk with Us!

We're excited to support our LGBTQIA2S+ community and walk in the Heartland PRIDE Parade on Saturday, July 15. We would love to have you join us to show your pride! Please bring your friends, colleagues, and families to walk with us.

The LOVE OUT LOUD parade will go through the Capitol District near downtown Omaha. The parade begins at 10:00 a.m. on July 15. Our group will start lining up at 8:30 a.m.

Please email Shari Collins, Inclusive Communities Faculty, at sharicollins44@gmail.com to RSVP by Wednesday, July 5. Include your name and the number of people in your group. As we get closer to the parade date, you’ll receive a follow-up email from Shari with specific information for the line-up, as well as other details.

We will also have a booth at Youth Pride on July 14.


Heartland Pride Details

LeadDIVERSITY Graduation

On June 9, we graduated our fourth cohort of LeadDIVERSITY Advocates. These 25 individuals now join an alumni class of 100 advocates committed to enacting long-term change toward diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace and beyond!

We will soon announce our fifth LeadDIVERSITY cohort, with a meet and greet in August.

Meet our new LeadDIVERSITY alumni!

Adia Brighton, Omaha Public Schools

Alicia Frieze, Council Bluffs Area Chamber of Commerce

Becky Nickerson, Creighton University

Brittney Hodges-Bolkovac, Westside Public Schools

Chastin Bailey, Koley Jessen P.C., L.L.O

Cheryl Murray, Partnership 4 Kids

Chris Stratman, Kiewit Luminarium

Dominique Johnson, Union Pacific

Elizabeth Blanco Rodriguez, Nebraska Department of Economic Development

Jamin Johnson, Douglas County Health Department

Jonathan Acosta, University of Nebraska at Omaha

Katie Kodad, Children’s Hospital & Medical Center

Laura Fritz, University of Nebraska Medical Center

Leonor Fuhrer, Nebraska Children and Families Foundation

Lori Tatreau, Community Activist

Mariana Schelle, Nebraska Children and Families Foundation

Michelle Deseure, Omaha Public Power District

Mo BaileyWestern Organization of Resource Councils

Ralph Kellogg, Lutheran Family Services

Reno Jameson, Jameson Consulting

Robert Aranda, Westside Community Schools

Rosalva Reyes, Completely KIDS

Rosey HiggsNonprofit Association of the Midlands

Stephanie Tafoya Keyser, First National Bank of Omaha

Yesenia Valenzuela, City of Omaha

For more information about LeadDIVERSITY or to learn how to become a sponsor, visit www.inclusive-communities.org/leaddiversity

Conversations for Change

Three months ago, we hosted the inaugural Jane H. & Rabbi Sidney H. Brooks Conversations for Change, featuring actor, writer, producer, and former White House staffer, Kal Penn. The video is now available to view on our YouTube channel.

If you weren't able to attend this year's conversation, next year is absolutely one you won't want to miss! Purchase your tickets to this year's Humanitarian Awards, where we will be revealing our 2024 Conversations for Change speaker.

Our 2022/23 Omaha Table Talk Season has officially wrapped! As we begin planning the schedule for next season, we'd love your input.


Please fill out our OTT survey by Friday, July 14th.

Previously on Omaha Table Talk

Queer Table Talk: Faith and the Queer Community

Moved recently? Email Lachelle to update your contact information for snail mail from us!
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