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Middle School Library: Diversity & Inclusivity

General Information

"We value our nation's diversity and strive to reflect that diversity by providing a full spectrum of resources and services to the communities we serve."
American Library Association
Core Values of Librarianship


Glossary of Inclusion Terms

The following definitions have been developed by Catlin Gabel educators to provide a common and evolving framework for open and healthy discourse to foster an inclusive, diverse and equitable community.

ALLY: Someone who recognizes their privilege, and works in solidarity with marginalized groups in the struggle for social justice.

BIAS: An inclination, often implicit or unconscious, that hinders impartial judgment.

BIGOT: A person who practices bigotry.

BIGOTRY: Intolerance of opinions, lifestyles, or identities not necessarily backed by the power of dominant culture systems and institutions, often accompanied by discriminatory behavior.

CLASS: A system of ordering society which divides people into sets based on perceived social or economic status.

CULTURAL APPROPRIATION: The adoption or use of the elements of one culture by members of another culture, often without understanding, acknowledgement, or respect for its value.

CULTURALLY RESPONSIVE: Practicing an ongoing awareness of one’s own identity and biases, and taking action to learn and honor the varying cultural and community norms of students and their families.

DIVERSITY: The range of differences represented in our community.

EQUITY: Everyone getting what they need in order to enjoy access, opportunities, and a fair chance to succeed.

GENDER EXPRESSION: The physical and behavioral manifestation of one’s gender identity.

GENDER FLUID: Of, relating to, or being a person whose gender identity is not fixed.

GENDER IDENTITY: A person’s internal sense of being male, female, some combination of male and female, or neither male nor female.

HETERONORMATIVE: A gender binary viewpoint that presumes heterosexuality as the standard and “normal” sexual orientation instead of being one of many possibilities.

INCLUSION: Active engagement that supports every individual’s identity and sense of belonging.

INTERSEX: Umbrella term denoting a number of variations in an individual’s bodily characteristics that do not match strict medical definitions of male or female. (The “I” in LGBTQIA: Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Questioning/Queer Intersex Asexual)

LGBTQIA: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Questioning/Queer, Intersex, Asexual

MACRO-AGGRESSION: Large scale or overt aggression towards persons of marginalized groups.

MARGINALIZE: To treat a person, group, or concept as insignificant or peripheral; to exclude from power and full participation.

MICRO-AGGRESSION: Commonplace verbal or nonverbal slights and indignities, whether intentional or unintentional, which communicate derogatory messages to persons of marginalized groups.

MULTICULTURALISM: The practice of promoting the respectful coexistence of diverse cultures.

POWER: The capacity to direct or influence the behavior of others or the course of events.

PREJUDICE: Prejudging a person or group of people based on stereotypes and biases, often accompanied by ignorance, fear, or hatred.

PRIVILEGE: Systemic access to unearned advantages, resources, and opportunities which come at the expense of others.

RACISM: Race prejudice backed by the power of dominant culture systems and institutions. A system of disadvantage based on race.

RACIST: A member of a dominant culture who practices racial prejudice.

SOCIAL JUSTICE: The ideal of full and equal participation of all groups within a society that is mutually shaped to uphold human rights. Social justice includes a vision of society that is equitable, and in which all members are physically and psychologically safe and secure.

SOCIOECONOMIC STATUS (SES): The perception of social standing or class of an individual or group measured not only by income but also educational attainment, financial security, and access to the opportunities and privileges within society.

STEREOTYPE: Generalizations about groups of people that negate individuals.

-ISM/-PHOBIA: Suffix describing attitudes, actions, or systemic structures that oppress a person or group because of their group identity. Examples include, but are not limited to:

  • skin color (racism)
  • gender (e.g., sexism, transphobia)
  • economic status (classism)
  • age (ageism)
  • religion (e.g., anti-Semitism, Islamophobia)
  • language/immigrant status (xenophobia)
  • ability (ableism)
  • sexual orientation (heterosexism, homophobia)
    • Homophobia and heterosexism are two terms between which a key difference can be identified. Homophobia is the fear of “homosexuality” and “homosexuals”. Heterosexism is the idea that heterosexuals are superior to others and have a right to dominate. The key difference between homophobia and heterosexism is that while homophobia refers to attitudes and behavioral patterns that people have against homosexuals, heterosexism is ideologies that stigmatize and oppress homosexuals

Dedicated to Ann Fyfield for her inspiration and work on this document and for modeling healthy discourse.

Diversity Fact Fridays

Erica Babino, Coordinator of Multicultural Programming at Catlin Gabel, started a weekly sharing of facts about diverse people in February of 2020 - the Diversity Fact Friday series. Her initial email to the community about these articles reads:

Every Friday, we’ll share brief articles, songs and videos showing the vast diversity of students, faculty and staff at Catlin Gabel. Since we are in the first week of Black History Month, the information shared today and for the next three weeks will reflect the rich history of people of the African diaspora. 


On Fridays, between March and May, we’ll email more interesting facts and stories around all areas of diversity. We are asking and encouraging YOU to share articles, videos or songs reflecting diversity from the “I” perspective.  Should you choose to provide a submission, please share your name, grade or position. If your submission is selected, we will let you know by the Thursday prior to Diversity Fact Friday.  We appreciate any and all submissions.


Thank you for embracing and celebrating diversity!

We want to make sure these articles are always and easily available to the community, and so are archiving them here. In this tabbed window, there is a tab per month with that month's DFFs on them. We present the text from each of the DFFs (with date added), and provide a PDF of the original as sent by Erica. Please let us know if you have feedback about how we might make these articles more accessible to you or others in the community.

February 7, 2020

Thank you, Kenya for the first submission of Diversity Fact Friday!

                In honor of Black History Month, I want to take a moment to honor and recognize one of my favorite Black idols, Samuel Coleridge Taylor. Taylor was born in 1875 in the Holdborn district in London, England and died in 1912 at the young age of 37. He was born to a Sierra Leonian father and an English mother.  Taylor’s father and mother separated before she knew she was pregnant, and his mother was left to raise him by herself. She named him after the English poet, Samuel Taylor Coleridge. Taylor would go on to become a successful composer and conductor, who was well known throughout America and the United Kingdom. He even did 3 tours in the US, in the early 1900’s. There is so much more that I could say about Samuel Coleridge Taylor, but I encourage you to research him on your own time. If you are interested, below is the link to “Dance Negre”, the finale to one of his most well know compositions, African Suite:

From Kenya:

English was not my first language. I grew up speaking Krio, a language native to Sierra Leone”.

Kenya Sei


February 14, 2020

Thank you, Francisco Garcia, Upper School Theater teacher for this wonderful submission!

In honor of Black History Month, I would like to honor one of my favorite playwrights Suzan-Lori Parks. She received the Pulitzer Prize in Drama for her Broadway hit Topdog/Underdog and was a recipient of the MacArthur Genius Grant and has also been awarded grants by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Rockefeller Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the New York State Council on the Arts.

In 2006, she wrote a play a day for one year, which culminated in her creation of 365 Days/365 Plays. 365 Days/365 Plays was produced in over 700 theaters worldwide, creating one of the largest collaborations in theater history. I was for fortunate enough to work with her on this project in Los Angeles and it remains one of my favorite plays I've ever participated in. Some of her other plays include Venus, the Book of Grace, Unchain My Heart: The Ray Charles Musical, In the Blood, The Death of the Last Black Man in the Whole Entire World, and the America Play.

In addition to writing plays, Suzan-Lori Parks also writes for film and has wrote screenplays for Denzel Washington, Brad Pitt, and Spike Lee. She is currently a professor at NYU's Tish School for the Arts and also has taught at the Yale School of Drama and the California Institute of the Arts. Her is a link to a video of her discussing her experience creating work

Suzan-Lori Parks

February 21, 2020

Thank you to ALEX WILLIAMSON, Palma Seminar Climate Change Instructor, for this thoughtful submission. It's a pleasure to honor a hometown hero!
Happy Friday, CG!

P.S. Seeking new submissions for the coming months.

Dr. Warren Washington, is among the most important figures in the history of climate science. He grew up in Portland and earned a BA in Physics and Master of Meteorology from Oregon State University. He obtained his Ph.D. from Penn State in 1964 and was the second African-American to receive a doctorate in the atmospheric sciences.

Dr. Washington joined the National Center for Atmospheric Research in 1963 and quickly became one of the first scientists to develop computer programs to model the Earth’s climate. These models, which use fundamental laws of physics to predict future states of the atmosphere, have helped scientists understand how and why the climate is changing. They are also the primary tool scientists use to predict the likely consequences of increasing global temperatures.

Dr. Washington has received numerous awards and recognitions for his contributions to science. The U.S. Department of Energy awarded Dr. Washington the Biological and Environmental Research Program Exceptional Service Award for Atmospheric Science in 1997. In 2009, he was elected as a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. In 2010, President Obama awarded Dr. Washington the National Medal of Science. In February 2019, Dr. Washington was awarded the Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement.

Oregon State University interviewed Dr. Washington in 2015 as part of its oral history project. Dr. Washington's interview focuses on his experience as an African American youth growing up in Oregon; the progression of his research in the atmospheric sciences; his experiences operating in Washington, D.C.; and his thoughts on the issue of climate change. You can find a link to his interview here.

February 29, 2020

Good morning!

Diversity Fact Friday is being celebrated on this last day of Black History Month.

Why do we celebrate Black History Month?

We celebrate for the same reasons we honor Women’s History Month that begins tomorrow on March 1, Asian Pacific American Heritage Month in May, Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15-October 15 and many others. We celebrate to recognize the struggles for freedom and equal opportunity. This recognition shows how ALL Americans are connected and affected by our shared experiences.

Black History Month: The celebration of Black History Month began as “Negro History Week,” which was created in 1926 by Carter G. Woodson, a noted African American historian, scholar, educator and publisher. It became a month-long celebration in 1976. The month of February was chosen to coincide with the birthdays of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln.


We are requesting submissions between now and the end of May to recognize diversity within and outside of CGS.
Have a wonderful weekend!

March 6, 2020

March is Women’s History Month! Thank you, Chris Messina for your submission about her shero!

Wilma Rudolph

Wilma Rudolph was a sickly child who had to wear a brace on her left leg. She overcame her disabilities to compete in the 1956 Summer Olympic Games, and in 1960, she became the first American woman to win three gold medals in track and field at a single Olympics. Later in life, she formed the Wilma Rudolph Foundation to promote amateur athletics.

Rudolph was born prematurely on June 23, 1940, in St. Bethlehem, Tennessee, the 20th of 22 children born to dad Ed across his two marriages. She went on to become a pioneering African American track and field champion, but the road to victory was not an easy one for Rudolph. Stricken with double pneumonia, scarlet fever and polio as a child, she had problems with her left leg and had to wear a brace. It was with great determination and the help of physical therapy that she was able to overcome her disabilities.

Rudolph is remembered as one of the fastest women in track and as a source of great inspiration for generations of athletes.


March 13, 2020

THANK YOU to the Lower School Jewish Affinity Group for this thoughtful submission honoring RBG during Women’s History Month 2020. Please email more amazing submissions like this one to celebrate women during the month of March and others throughout the remainder of the school year. Happy Friday!

The Lower School Jewish Affinity Group honors Supreme Court Justice


“The Notorious R.G.B.”

Happy 87th Birthday Justice Ginsberg!

Sunday, March 15, 2020

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We admire Justice Ginsburg for her efforts throughout her legal career as an advocate for gender equality and women’s rights, and her strength and courage to say “I dissent” especially when she was the only woman on the Supreme Court.

The LS Jewish Affinity group asks you to take a moment to recognize and be grateful for the amazing things she has done throughout her life to support our freedoms! We may not all be able to be Supreme Court Justices, but she inspires us to stand up for what is right. She makes us proud to be Jewish!

And she works out for an hour twice a week.

She says, “I drop everything for my workouts!”

STAY STRONG, Ruth Bader Ginsburg!


RBG Workout

March 20, 2020

Many thanks to Upper School Science teacher, Becky Wynne for this uplifting submission about Toshiko Mayeda.

Please send your submission today for the coming weeks to
Happy Spring Break, CGS!

(Adapted from: The Indomitable Toshiko Mayeda, Matthew Shindell, Chemistry World, March 2, 2020). Link to the full article

The Tule Lake internment camp was one of 10 camps established in the US after the Japanese attack on the US naval base at Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941. Toshiko Mayeda was only 19 years old when the US government forcibly relocated her and her Japanese-born father, Matsusaburo Kuki. They were among the more than 100,000 US citizens of Japanese ancestry imprisoned in such facilities.

Mayeda was bright and determined, and had continued her studies as far as she could in the camp. In 1946, after having spent four years of the war imprisoned by her own government, Mayeda moved 2000 miles from Northern California to Chicago, Illinois. In her new home in Chicago, a love of science drew her to chemistry, which she studied first at Wilbur Wright College before moving on to the University of Chicago. With only an undergraduate degree in chemistry, Mayeda nonetheless would go on to make a profound and lasting contribution to our chemical understanding of the Earth and the solar system.

At the University of Chicago Mayeda collaborated with the Nobel prize-winning chemist, Harold Urey, and developed an oxygen thermometer. They developed methods to extract uncontaminated carbon dioxide gas samples from the calcium carbonate of fossil shells recovered from deep-sea cores. They fed these samples into the mass spectrometers and, with the results, determined the temperature variations of the Cretaceous and Pleistocene periods, tens of millions of years ago. Mayeda also worked with cosmochemist Robert Clayton. They were able to determine the temperatures at which meteorite and lunar samples had formed and discovered that meteorites included oxygen that had predated the solar system. They developed the Clayton–Mayeda model of oxygen isotope abundances in the solar system.

In 2002 Mayeda was awarded a medal from the Geochemical Society of Japan for her contributions to cosmochemistry. Mayeda died in 2004.

April 3, 2020

Many thanks to Krystal Wu, US English teacher, for this submission! Grace Lee Boggs was a civil rights leader, social activist, philosopher, feminist, author and so much more. This inspiring submission touches on parts of Grace Lee Bogg’s life. She showed us that if we work TOGETHER, anything and everything is possible. For more information, please view the attached 7 minute PBS video below. Thanks again, Krystal!

Born in Providence, R.I., to Chinese immigrants in 1915, Boggs studied at Barnard College and went on to earn her Ph.D. in philosophy from Bryn Mawr College.

After finishing grad school, Boggs struggled to find work — any work, she told a group of students in 2012. "Even department stores would say, 'We don't hire Orientals,' " she recalled. So she moved to the Midwest, where she found a job with the University of Chicago's philosophy library. It paid only $10 a week, a stipend so low she was forced to find free housing in a rat-filled basement.

But even the rats had an upside. One day, as Boggs was walking through her neighborhood, she came across a group of people protesting poor living conditions — which included rat-infested housing. This, Boggs recalled, connected her with the black community for the very first time.

"I was aware that people were suffering, but it was more of a statistical thing," Boggs said. "Here in Chicago I was coming into contact with it as a human thing."

A few years later, in the 1940s, she moved to Detroit to help edit the radical newsletter Correspondence. There, she met a charismatic auto worker and activist named James Boggs. They married in 1953.


Together, the couple became two of the city's most noted activists, tackling issues related to labor and civil rights, feminism, Black Power, Asian Americans and the environment. In 1974, they wrote Revolution And Evolution In The Twentieth Century; in 1998, she published an autobiography, Living For Change; and in 2011, she co-wrote The Next American Revolution: Sustainable Activism For The Twenty-First Century with Scott Kurashige, a professor and author.

Grace Lee Boggs, who has spent much of her life advocating for civil rights and labor rights, became such a noted figure in Detroit's Black Power movement that people assumed she must be partially black. In some of her FBI files, Boggs, who is Chinese-American, was described as "probably Afro Chinese."

Ms. Boggs eventually adopted Dr. King’s nonviolent strategies and in Detroit, which remained her base for the rest of her life, fostered Dr. King’s vision of “beloved communities,” striving for racial and economic justice through nonconfrontational methods. As Detroit’s economy and population declined sharply over the years, Ms. Boggs became a prominent symbol of resistance to the spreading blight.

She founded food cooperatives and community groups to support the elderly, organized unemployed workers and fought utility shut-offs. She devised tactics to combat crime, including protests outside known crack houses, and in columns for a local weekly newspaper, The Michigan Citizen, she promoted civic reforms.

In 1992, she co-founded Detroit Summer, a youth program that still draws volunteers from all over the country to repair homes, paint murals, organize music festivals and turn vacant lots into community gardens. In 2013 she opened the James and Grace Lee Boggs School, a charter elementary school. Wikipedia/


April 10, 2020

A BIG Texas THANKS to Kenny Nguyen, for proposing that we celebrate trailblazer, mathematician and professor, Vivienne Malone Mayes. She is an inspiration for us all and especially those involved in STEM, STEAM and other programs that advance women and POC in math and science.

Vivienne Lucille Malone-Mayes (February 10, 1932 – June 9, 1995) was an American mathematician and professor. Malone-Mayes studied properties of functions, as well as methods of teaching mathematics. She was the fifth African-American woman to gain a PhD in mathematics in the United States, and the first African-American member of the faculty of Baylor University.

Vivienne grew up in segregated schools in the south. She entered Fish University at the age of 16 and earned a BA in 1952.

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After earning her master's she chaired the Mathematics department at Paul Quinn College for seven years and then at Bishop College for one year before deciding to take further graduate mathematics course. She was refused admission at Baylor University due to segregation and instead attend summer courses at the University of Texas. After another year of teaching she decided to attend the University of Texas full-time as a graduate student. She was the only African American and only woman in the class, and at first her classmates ignored her. She was not allowed to teach, was unable to attend professor Robert Lee Moore's lectures, and could not join off-campus meetings because they were held in a coffee shop which could not, under Texas law, serve African Americans. She wrote, "My mathematical isolation was complete", and that "it took a faith in scholarship almost beyond measure to endure the stress of earning a Ph.D. degree as a Black, female graduate student". She participated in civil rights demonstrations, and her friends and colleagues Etta Falconer and Lee Lorch wrote on her death that "With skill, integrity, steadfastness and love she fought racism and sexism her entire life, never yielding to the pressures or problems which beset her path". Wikipedia

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April 17, 2020

Good morning CGS!

Today’s DFF is in celebration of Earth Day and a result of our passion for activism and change. MLK said, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter”.

Climate Change matters.

Next Wednesday, April 22th is the 50th anniversary of EARTH DAY. The theme for this year is CLIMATE ACTION.

When we think of diversity, climate change and action may not readily come to mind. Indeed, communities of color experience a disproportionate impact of Environmental Injustice. The NAACP’s Environmental and Climate Justice Program was created to support community leadership in addressing this human and civil rights issue.

In the past, and to some extent still now, when people think of environmentalism, they often think of saving the whales or hugging trees. When folks think about climate change, what often comes to mind are melting ice caps and suffering polar bears. Historically, American society has failed to make the connection in terms of the direct impact of environmental injustices, including climate change, on our own lives, families, and communities, all of whom depend on the physical environment and its bounty.

Race is the number one indicator for the placement of toxic facilities in this country.

Toxic facilities, like coal fired power plants and incinerators, emit mercury, arsenic, lead, and other contaminants into the water, food, and lungs of communities. Many of these same facilities also emit carbon dioxide and methane – the #1 and #2 drivers of climate change. At the same time, not all are equally impacted. For example, race – even more than class – is the number one indicator for the placement of toxic facilities in this country and communities of color and low income communities are often the hardest hit by climate change.

Environmental injustice is about people in Detroit, Ohio, Chicago, Memphis, Kansas City, and elsewhere who have died and others who are chronically ill due to exposure to toxins from coal fired power plants and other toxic facilities.


Climate change is about the increase in the severity of storms like Sandy and Isaac, which devastated communities from Boston to Biloxi and will become more of the norm. Our sisters and brothers in the Bahamas, as well as Inuit communities in Kivalina, Alaska, and communities in Thibodaux, Louisiana and beyond, will be losing their homes to rising sea levels in the coming years.



Climate change and environmental injustice are about sisters and brothers from West Virginia to Tennessee who are breathing toxic ash from blasting for mountain top removal.


Environmental injustice and climate change are about the fact that in many communities it is far easier to find a bag of Cheetos than a carton of strawberries and this only stands to get worse as drought and flooding impact the availability and affordability of nutritious food.

The Environmental and Climate Justice Program works at addressing the many practices that are harming communities nationwide and worldwide and the policies needed to rectify these impacts and advance a society that fosters sustainable, cooperative, regenerative communities that uphold all rights for all people in harmony with the earth. eb/



Our ACTION is for everyone in the world—especially our children.

Have a wonderful weekend, CGS!

April 24, 2020

What’s happening, CGS community? GOOD MORNING!

Today, we celebrate mother and activist Jeanne Manford, co-founder of Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG).

In April 1972, Manford and her husband, Jules were at home in Flushing, Queens, when they learned from a hospital's telephone call that her son Morty, a gay activist, had been beaten while distributing flyers inside the fiftieth annual Inner Circle dinner, a political gathering in New York City. Reports stated that Morty was "kicked and stomped" while being led away by police. In response, she wrote a letter of protest to the New York Post that identified herself as the mother of a gay protester and complained of police inaction. She gave interviews to radio and television shows in several cities in the weeks that followed, always accompanied by her husband or son.

On June 25, she participated with her son in the New York Pride March, carrying a hand-lettered sign that read "Parents of Gays Unite in Support for Our Children". At the time, homosexuality was still considered a mental illness and sodomy a crime, and California Senator Mark Leno has subsequently reflected that "[f]or her to step into the street to declare support for her mentally ill, outlaw son - that was no small act ... But it was what a mother's love does." Manford recalled in a 1996 interview the cheers she received in the parade, and that the "young people were hugging me, kissing me, screaming, asking if I would talk to their parents ... [as] few of them were not out to their parents for fear of rejection." Prompted by this enthusiastic reception, Manford and her husband developed an idea for an organization of the parents of gays and lesbians that could be, she later said, "a bridge between the gay community and the heterosexual community". They were soon holding meetings for such parents, with her husband participating as well. She called him "a very articulate person ... a much better speaker than I. He was right along with me on everything." The first meeting of the group—then called Parents of Gays—was attended by about 20 people, and was held at the Metropolitan-Duane Methodist Church, now the Church of the Village.


“I have a homosexual son and I love him.”
— Jeanne Manford, Letter to the Editor, New York Post, April 29, 1972


“The symbolic presence that my mother provided was a sign of great hope that parents can be supportive. That the people we’re closest to, whom we love the most, need not be our enemies; [they] can be out supports.” Morty Manford, 1989


Receiving the Presidential Citizens Medal 2012*

Jeanne Manford died at home in Daly City, California on January 8, 2013, aged 92. A collection of Manford's papers is archived at the New York Public Library. James Martin, Catholic Jesuit priest and editor of America, paid tribute to her: "No matter what you think about the hot-button issue of same-sex marriage, no matter what religion you are, no matter what political party you favor, I hope that you say a prayer for Mrs. Manford. For she loved prophetically."

* Editor's note: the original email misdated this event as 1972.

May 1, 2020

A big CGS THANK YOU to George Zaninovich, Director of the Center and Place Programs as part of the Office of Inclusion and Outreach Office. We appreciate your submission of this inspirational, local leader.

Beatrice Hulon Morrow was born on January 9, 1890 in Littig, Texas and was raised by her parents to value education. She started singing at an early age and as a young women, moved to Chicago to study music.


In June of 1912, Beatrice Morrow married Edward Daniel Cannady. He was the co-founder of The Advocate, one of Portland, Oregon's first black-owned newspapers. The two had written to each other while Morrow was living in Chicago. Upon moving to Portland, Cannady became associate editor of The Advocate. Her work through the newspaper drew attention to racial violence during the early 1920s and prompted a statement from Governor Ben W. Olcott decrying the actions of the Ku Klux Klan, which was spreading through Oregon at the time.

Beatrice, ED Cannady and son, George, circa 1912

In addition to her editorial work, Cannady helped to establish the Portland chapter of the NAACP in 1913. This organization marked the first such branch of the organization formed west of the Mississippi River and continues to actively participate in the Portland community. Acting as the chapter's secretary, Cannady worked with the group to remove racist, exclusionary language from Oregon's constitution, a mission which succeeded in 1926 and 1927 when the changes were ratified. Cannady also led protests against Ku Klux Klan propaganda film The Birth of a Nation.

Cannady graduated from Northwestern College of Law in 1922, making her the first black woman to graduate from law school in Oregon. She went on to become the first black woman to practice law in Oregon and the first black woman to run for state representative. Cannady successfully advocated for the passage of civil rights bills by the Oregon state legislature. Her efforts helped integrate public schools in Longview, Washington and Vernonia, Oregon.

In 1927, Cannady represented Oregon at the 4th annual Pan-African Congress in New York City.


Cannady paved the way for the second generation of civil rights activists in Oregon with her nearly 25-year fight as a leading activist. To honor her history in the area, a new school in the North Clackamas School District bears her name as the Beatrice Morrow Cannady Elementary School. An affordable housing project in North Portland will be named the Beatrice Morrow Building in her honor.


Cannady left Oregon in about 1938 and moved to Los Angeles, California where she married Reuben Taylor. She worked for the Precinct Reporter, a Southern California newspaper founded in 1965 that served the black community. Beatrice Morow Cannady died August 4, 1974. eb/wikipedia


May 8, 2020

In 1990, George H.W. Bush signed a bill passed by Congress to extend Asian-American Heritage week to a month. May was officially designated as Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month. On May 1, 2009, President Obama celebrated the great and significant contributions to the American society when he issued a Presidential Proclamation recalling the challenges and triumphs of by Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the U.S.

Today, we recognize the first woman of color in the U.S House of Representatives, Patsy Takemoto Mink.


Patsy Takemoto Mink made waves when she was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1964, representing Hawaii’s 2nd Congressional District. Although she was born in the U.S. and raised on the island of Maui, her family was from Japan. She attended the University of Chicago Law school after college. In the workforce, the odds were stacked against her: Law firms refused to hire her, telling her that women should stay home to care for their children. After being elected, she was one of only eight women in Congress at that time.


Once in office, Mink championed the fight against the inequity that she had faced. Most people in the U.S. have heard of Title IX, the landmark legislation that prohibits gender discrimination in education, but many do not realize that Mink was one of two principal authors and sponsors of the bill, and even penned its first draft. To this day, Title IX’s influence lives on, a vital tool in the fight against discrimination and sexual harassment in classrooms and in school sports.


She served a total of 12 terms, representing Hawaii's at-large and second congressional districts. While in Congress in the late 1960s, she introduced the first comprehensive initiatives under the Early Childhood Education Act, which included the first federal child-care bill and worked on the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965. In 1970, she became the first person to oppose a Supreme Court nominee on the basis of discrimination against women. Mink initiated a lawsuit which led to significant changes to presidential authority under the Freedom of Information Act in 1971. In 1972, she co-authored the Title IX Amendment of the Higher Education Act, later renamed the Patsy T. Mink Equal Opportunity in Education Act in 2002.

On August 30, 2002, Mink was hospitalized in Honolulu's Straub Clinic and Hospital due to complications from chickenpox. She died on September 28, 2002. Mink's death occurred one week after she had won the 2002 primary election, too late for her name to be removed from the general election ballot. On November 5, 2002, Mink was posthumously re-elected to Congress. wiki/eb

The number of contributions made by Patsy Mink are too many to write in one email. She was an amazing legislator, activist and inspiration to all. Please view the video below for more information.

**Please submit names or writeups of others you wish to see highlighted in Diversity Fact Fridays. Thank you.

May 15, 2020

Good afternoon CGS!

This narrative and submission is so generously written and shared by Sheri Cocquio, Lower School Science Teacher. Thank you, Sheri for sharing information about Nainoa Thompson.

“I don’t know if it needs to be said or how I can eloquently to say this, but there is often a misunderstanding about calling people from Hawai‘i, Hawaiians. This is quite the faux pas, because “Hawaiian” is reserved for people of Native Hawaiian ancestry. I was born and raised and spent all of my life in Hawai‘i up until two years ago, so I am a “person from Hawai‘i” or “former Hawai‘i resident” or “Hawai‘i local” or “kama‘āina”, not “Hawaiian” or “kanaka.” Sheri

I would like to submit Nainoa Thompson. If people are also interested in a film about voyaging and Nainoa’s contribution, they can watch Wayfinders: A Pacific Odyssey

Nainoa Thompson, navigator for the Polynesian Voyaging Society, has inspired and led a revival of traditional voyaging arts in Hawai'i and Polynesia-arts which have been lost for centuries due to the cessation of such voyaging and the colonization and Westernization of the Polynesian archipelagos.

In 1980, Thompson became the first Hawaiian and the first Polynesian to practice the art of wayfinding on long distance ocean voyages since voyaging ended in Polynesia around the 14th century. Thompson has developed a system of wayfinding, or non-instrument navigation, synthesizing traditional principles of ancient Pacific navigation and modern scientific knowledge. This system of wayfinding is being taught in schools throughout Hawai'i the Pacific. In addition to being a navigator, Thompson is a leader with a vision, and a charismatic, spell-binding storyteller. The following accounts of the revival of voyaging and navigation in moddern times, the history of the Polynesian Voyaging Society, and the Society's long-range vision and mission for rethinking the future of Hawai'i, is presented, as much as possible in Thompson's own words-from his interviews, talks and writings.


Nainoa Thompson is the president of the Polynesian Voyaging Society and a Pwo navigator. Inspired by his kūpuna, his teachers, he has dedicated his life to exploring the deep meaning of voyaging. Among many other important mentors, Yoshio Kawano took him at an early age to tide pools to explore the mysteries of the inshore ocean; Herb Kāne introduced him to the stars his ancestors used to navigate great ocean distances; and Pwo navigator Mau Piailug taught him to see the natural signs he would use to guide Hōkūleʻa, a replica of an ancient Polynesian voyaging canoe, throughout Polynesia. Nainoa’s father taught him the universal values of voyaging – of having a vision of islands rising from the sea, of self-discipline, preparation, courage, risk-taking and the spirit of aloha that would bind a crew on arduous journeys.

On long voyages, under a dome of stars and surrounded by the vast empty ocean, Nainoa came to appreciate the Hawaiian concept of “mālama” – care taking. “Our ancestors learned that if they took care of their canoe and each other,” he has often told his crew, “and if they marshaled their resources of food and water, they would arrive safely at their destination.” Astronaut Lacy Veach, who observed the Hawaiian Islands from space, helped Nainoa understand “mālama” from a planetary perspective. “The best place to think about the fate of our planet is right here in our islands,” Veach told Nainoa. “If we can create a model for well-being here in Hawaiʻi we can make a contribution to the entire world.” From all these teachings comes the next great voyage of exploration – Hōkūleʻa’s journey around the world to “mālama honua” – care for the planet.


Do you have a submission? Please send to

May 22, 2020

This week, on May 20th, marked Israel Kamakawiwo‘ole’s 61st birthday. Thank you again, Sheri Cocquio, Lower School Science teacher for this inspiring Google Doodle tribute to him:


He began playing music with his older brother Skippy and cousin Allen Thornton at the age of 11, being exposed to the music of Hawaiian entertainers of the time such as Peter Moon, Palani Vaughn and Don Ho, who frequented the establishment where Kamakawiwoʻole's parents worked. Hawaiian musician Del Beazley spoke of the first time he heard Kamakawiwoʻole perform, when, while playing for a graduation party, the whole room fell silent on hearing him sing. He continued his path as his brother Skippy entered the Army in 1971 and his cousin Allen left in 1976 for the mainland.

In his early teens, he studied at Upward Bound (UB) of the University of Hawaii at Hilo and his family moved to Mākaha. There he met Louis Kauakahi, Sam Gray, and Jerome Koko. Together with Skippy they formed the Makaha Sons of Niʻihau. A part of the Hawaiian Renaissance, the band's blend of contemporary and traditional styles gained in popularity as they toured their state and the continental United States, releasing fifteen successful albums. Kamakawiwoʻole's aim was to make music that stayed true to the typical sound of traditional Hawaiian music.

Israel Kamakawiwo‘ole may be world renown because of his rendition of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” however he was known throughout Hawai‘i for many years as Bruddah Iz for his activism, bold lyrics and beautiful voice. The Hawaiian singer-songwriter first began in the group called “The Makaha Sons of Ni‘ihau” winning many awards and changing Hawaiian music history.

One of his most important songs was “Hawai‘i 78” – song linked and lyrics below. You can feel the power and sorrow behind his voice. Bruddah Iz used this platform to voice Hawaiian perspectives of rights and independence. This came during a time referred to as the Hawaiian Renaissance. Iz gave voice to the feeling many Native Hawaiians had at the time, after decades of assimilation and denial of Hawaiian cultural practices like Hawaiian language, music, traditional navigation and voyaging, agriculture, and hula. Combined with the chanting of the state’s motto: Ua mau ke ea o ka ‘āina i ka pono, to me this song reminds people of the world that we need to continuously reflect on our actions for the good of the land.

Ua mau, ke ea o ka aina, i ka pono, o Hawai'i
Ua mau, ke ea o ka aina, i ka pono, o Hawai'i

(The Life of the Land is Perpetuated in Righteousness)

If just for a day our king and queen
Would visit all these islands and saw everything

How would they feel about the changes of our land

Could you just imagine if they were around
And saw highways on their sacred grounds

How would they feel about this modern city life

Tears would come from each others eyes
As they would stop to realize

That our people are in great great danger now

How, would they feel, could their smiles be content, then cry
Cry for the gods, cry for the people

Cry for the land that was taken away

And then yet you'll find, Hawai'i
Could you just imagine they came back

And saw traffic lights and railroad tracks

How would they feel about this modern city life
Tears would come from each others eyes

As they would stop to realize

That our land is in great great danger now
All the fighting that the king had done

To conquer all these islands now these condominiums

How would he feel if he saw Hawai'i nei
How, would he feel, would his smile be content, then cry

Ua mau, ke ea o ka aina, i ka pono, o Hawai'i
Ua mau, ke ea o ka aina, i ka pono, o Hawai'i

Thanks again, Sheri! I’m collecting submissions for the 2020-2021 school year so please keep them coming! Have a peaceful weekend.

May 29, 2020

This DFF was submitted by Alison Ward (’99) , Administrative Assistant for the Inclusion Office and Learning Center and Garden Coordinator. Thank you and all who are involved in anti-racist advocacy. The statements below went viral on social media. At this writing, the author is unknown.

In America—because I am a white person, I can do all of these things without thinking twice:

I can go birding

I can go jogging

I can relax in the comfort of my own home
(#BothemJean and #AtatianaJefferson)

I can ask for help after a car crash
(#JonathanFerrell and #RenishMcBride)

I can have a cellphone

I can leave a party to get to safety

I can sleep

I can walk from the corner store

I can play cops and robbers

I can go to church

I can walk home with Skittles

I can hold a hair brush while leaving my own bachelor party

I can party on New Years

I can get a normal traffic ticket

I can lawfully carry a weapon

I can break down on a public road with car problems

I can shop at Walmart

I can have a disabled vehicle

I can read a book in my own car

I can be a 10 year old walking with our grandfather

I can decorate for a party

I can ask a copy [sic] a questions

I can cash a check in peace

I can feel safe from a police raid in my home

I can take out my wallet

I can run

I can breathe


Submissions are welcomed by all. Please send to

June 5, 2020

Thank you to Maggie Bendicksen, Instructional Coach for your submission recognizing local Sheroes who are educators and social justice activists and inspiring all who have been and are on this similar and transformational journey.

Today we’re celebrating the five incredible women who founded KairosPDX, a Portland Public charter school in N. Portland located close to The Center. One of the women is Zalika Gardner, who taught at Catlin Gabel for many years. Zalika had the vision to co-create Kairos many years ago and worked steadily to make the dream a reality.

The year-round school was founded by educators who “understand the pivotal role that education plays as a gateway to opportunity.” The school recognizes that the U.S. is “split on socio-economic and racial lines. One need only look at said schools to see who is who. We are faced with a persistent achievement gap that perpetuates inequity and the denial of opportunity that so many have fought for, died for… We believe we can provide a model that narrows the gap and develops young people that do not know only how to pass a test, but know how to help their neighbor, know how to lead, know that they can change the world for good.”

One of the school’s leaders is Kali Ladd. She spoke earlier this week about George Floyd’s murder and ensuing protests. One of the quotes that really struck me was this: “You see, because I’ve devoted my life and career to children, I am always palpably aware of their presence. I know they are watching what we do, and what we don’t do. Watching what we say, and what we don’t say. Every moment is instructive. They are listening for something, and if they only hear silence their heads are filled with noise. And this noise can be fear, this noise can be depression, this noise can be complacency, the noise can be grief. “ Here’s a link to her must-watch video.



Left to right: Kaaren, Marsha, Zalika, Kali & Jasmine

Kali Ladd, KairosPDX Executive Director
Kali is a social entrepreneur who is a passionate advocate for equity and education transformation with a background that spans from teacher to program manager to policy maker over the last 18 years. After spending four years as Education Director for Former Mayor Sam Adams, Kali pursued establishing and co-founding KairosPDX, a non-profit dedicated to closing opportunity and achievement gaps for historically marginalized children.

In May 2012, Kali won election to the Portland Community College Board of Directors. She currently Chairs the board. In 2016, Kali was appointed by Governor Brown to the Early Learning Council of Oregon where she also currently serves. In addition to her national work, Kali has worked overseas in South Africa teaching and supporting the development of two community based projects: a community library and women-owned bakery. Kali is a 2016 American Leadership Forum fellow and in 2017 was nominated to Portland Business Journal’s Forty Under 40 entrepreneur group.

Kali resides in Portland with her husband and two young children. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and Psychology from Boston College and earned a Master’s Degree in Education Policy from Harvard University.

Zalika Gardner, KairosPDX Education Director
Former Opal Charter School Anchor Teacher / Equity Consultant. Zalika has worked with primary aged children for the past 22 years. After beginning her teaching career in the Los Angeles Public Schools, Zalika spent the last thirteen years teaching first and second grade at Catlin Gabel School. As an adjunct professor in the Lewis and Clark Graduate School of Education and Counseling for six years, Zalika taught Child Development, Literacy and Historical Perspectives in Education. As a founding partner, Zalika has co-designed the scope, trajectory and focus of KairosPDX program and theory of change. She serves as instructional leader for KairosPDX Learning Academy facilitating partnerships with educational institutions as well as recruiting, sustaining and training educators and volunteers.

Born and raised in N.E. Portland, Zalika resides in N. Portland with her husband and 3 children. Zalika received her BA in Psychology from Scripps College and earned her MA in Educational Leadership and Multicultural Studies from Columbia University’s Teachers College.

Kaaren Heikes, KairosPDX Board Member
Kaaren has served in the public education arena for 22 years. For the past ten years, she has served as the key leader in Oregon’s charter school movement, providing extensive technical assistance to charter schools, charter developers, and district sponsors, as well as working at the state level to influence legislation, policy and practices. Kaaren will bring her expertise to the work of building and managing the non-profit as well as providing organizational administration of KairosPDX.

Kaaren is a Northwest native and continues to live in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and 3 children. Kaaren has earned an M.S. in K-12 Policy and Administration, a B.A. in English, and certification in both in K-12 Administration and Secondary Teaching.

Marsha Williams, KairosPDX Board Chair
Former Project Manager, OHSU, School of Medicine. Marsha has over 16 years professional experience researching, writing, managing and coordinating over 15 research grants in academic medicine. She is first generation American and served for over 6 years with the Haitian Health Institute, in Boston, exposing underserved youth to enrichment and college preparatory programs as well as helping high school students navigate the college application process.

Marsha comes to Oregon from New York by way of Boston and resides in Portland with her husband and four young children. Marsha received her bachelor’s degree in sociology with an emphasis in health, law & society and women’s studies from Brandeis University.

Diversity Fact Friday will pause after June 12th and resume when school begins in August. I encourage you all to send names and submissions for next school year. The students, faculty and staff want and need to hear from you. Please support DFF by emailing submissions to:

June 12, 2020 (1 of 2)

Welcome to the last two Diversity Fact Friday’s of the school year! Thank you for the last six months of your dedication to sharing information celebrating diversity.

Thank you to John Harnetiaux, incoming US Dean of Students for recognizing an essential event in history that sparked a movement that has changed all of our lives. As we protest and speak out today, let’s remember that for marginalized people, unfortunately, it takes an UPRISING to be heard.

“Why are you just standing there?” That question sparked a movement. That same question is alive today.

This month we celebrate the 51st Anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising, a multiday sequence of protests against police brutality that took place in New York City in late June 1969. Many credit this uprising as a pivotal push forward for the LGBTQ rights movement in the United States. As strong waves of protest unfold across the U.S. in response to centuries of racial violence, the Stonewall Uprising serves as an example of how a moment in history can evolve into a catalyst for change, even as justice has not yet arrived and is woefully incomplete.

As a cisgender, white, heterosexual male, the Stonewall Uprising is not my story. However, a detail of the story surfaces an important question for me as an aspiring ally. On the evening of June 28, 1969, some historical accounts suggest there was a drag performer named Storme DeLarverie who was being harassed by the police outside the Stonewall Inn with a group of onlookers watching the fight. She allegedly yelled out to the onlookers something like “Why are you just standing there?! Do something!” This prompted the onlookers to engage in the struggle as well, with many citing this as the genesis of the uprising, as well as the larger fight for LGBTQ rights in the years to come.

Before digging into the stories below, here are a couple thing I found helpful to think about:

  • The Stonewall Uprising is often described as a series of “violent riots.” This recent video from Trevor Noah has encouraged me to reflect on how my dominant identity and positionality influences how I see and interpret current and past events, along with the concept of “violence” itself.
  • I needed to remind myself to bring an “intersectional” lens to these videos and stories. Racism and homophobia compound oppression and violence to women, transgender, intersex, and gender noncomforming people of color from the LGBTQ community. And, the immense leadership demonstrated by the trans women of color in these events is undeniable.

Here are some stories about the Stonewall Uprising. Please note some of the resources contain some graphic imagery, language, and content, including descriptions of violence to members of the LGBTQ community.

  • Here’s a short video giving an overview of the uprising and its legacy.
  • “Who threw the first brick at Stonewall?” Most accounts suggest it was thrown by a black trans woman named Marsha P. Johnson, with many crediting her as a pivotal leader of this movement.
  • Check out this video from the New York Times that was created in 2019 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising.

In August 2019, my wife and I visited the Stonewall National Monument near Stonewall Inn after President Obama designated it as the first national monument to the LGBTQ rights movement in 2016. I took the picture below.

I have and continue to fall short in my allyship. This photo reminds me of my pursuit to be consistent and focused in my actions of solidarity, and to move beyond...just standing there.

June 12, 2020 (2 of 2)

In August of 1619, the first enslaved Africans arrived in the British colony of Virginia. After 401 years, we are still struggling with race relations in this country. The first anti-miscegenation law prohibiting English women and “Negro” slaves was enacted in Maryland in 1661.

…free-born English women who intermarry with Negro slaves: “whatsoever free-born woman shall intermarry with any slave, shall serve the master of such slave during the life of her husband; all the issues [children] of such free-born women, so married, shall be slaves as their fathers were.” 1


Good morning!

Finally, 306 years later and after hundreds of interracial (illegal/unrecognized) marriages, including in my own extended family, the change finally came in 1967. In 1958, Mildred Jeter Loving, a Black and Indigenous woman and Richard Loving, a white man were sentence to one year in prison. What was their crime? They were married to each other. Their marriage violated Virginia's Racial Integrity Act of 1924, which criminalized marriage between people classified as "white" and people classified as "colored". The Lovings’ appealed their conviction to the Supreme Court of Virginia, which upheld it. They then appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, which agreed to hear their case.

On June 12, 1967, the Court issued a unanimous decision in the Lovings' favor and overturned their convictions. The Court struck down Virginia's anti-miscegenation law, ending all race-based legal restrictions on marriage in the United States. Virginia had argued that its law was not a violation of the Equal Protection Clause because the punishment was the same regardless of the offender's race, and thus it "equally burdened" both whites and non-whites. The Court found that the law nonetheless violated the Equal Protection Clause because it was based solely on "distinctions drawn according to race" and outlawed conduct—namely, getting married—that was otherwise generally accepted and which citizens were free to do.


To learn more, please click on the movie preview. “Loving” can be streamed on Hulu, Amazon, HBO and Netflix.

Another video to enjoy and learn:
Oldest Living Interracial Couple

Have a great summer. We’ll see you back in September!


June 19, 2020

In 1990, actor and rapper LL Cool J rapped, “Don’t call it a comeback!” Well, guess what? We’re back for one last Diversity Fact Friday honoring


As a Black woman who grew up near Galveston, Texas, I remember the ferry rides to the island to celebrate Juneteenth with my family. As an adult, I took part in ceremonies on the beach in Galveston in commemoration of that day years ago when my ancestors learned that they were free from the horrors of slavery. Many Americans are very recently learning about Juneteenth. If you aren’t familiar with the history of this important date, please read and watch below:

Juneteenth is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States. Dating back to 1865, it was on June 19th that the Union soldiers, led by Major General Gordon Granger, landed at Galveston, Texas with news that the war had ended and that the enslaved were now free. Note that this was two and a half years after President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation - which had become official January 1, 1863. The Emancipation Proclamation had little impact on the Texans due to the minimal number of Union troops to enforce the new Executive Order. However, with the surrender of General Lee in April of 1865, and the arrival of General Granger’s regiment, the forces were finally strong enough to influence and overcome the resistance.

Later attempts to explain this two and a half year delay in the receipt of this important news have yielded several versions that have been handed down through the years. Often told is:

  • The story of a messenger who was murdered on his way to Texas with the news of freedom.
  • Another is that the news was deliberately withheld by the enslavers to maintain the labor force on the plantations.
  • And still another is that federal troops actually waited for the slave owners to reap the benefits of one last cotton harvest before going to Texas to enforce the Emancipation Proclamation.

All of which, or none of these versions could be true.

The reactions to this profound news ranged from pure shock to immediate jubilation. While many lingered to learn of this new employer to employee relationship, many left before these offers were completely off the lips of their former 'masters' - attesting to the varying conditions on the plantations and the realization of freedom. Even with nowhere to go, many felt that leaving the plantation would be their first grasp of freedom. North was a logical destination and for many it represented true freedom, while the desire to reach family members in neighboring states drove some into Louisiana, Arkansas and Oklahoma. Settling into these new areas as free men and women brought on new realities and the challenges of establishing a heretofore non-existent status for black people in America. Recounting the memories of that great day in June of 1865 and its festivities would serve as motivation as well as a release from the growing pressures encountered in their new territories.

The celebration of June 19th was coined "Juneteenth" and grew with more participation from descendants. The Juneteenth celebration was a time for reassuring each other, for praying and for gathering remaining family members. Juneteenth continued to be highly revered in Texas decades later, with many former slaves and descendants making an annual pilgrimage back to Galveston on this date.1


Why should Juneteenth be an important day for everyone in the United States? Just like July 4th, Juneteenth is a shared holiday.

Washington Post columnist, Petula Dvorak said that 3 days ago, at the age of 66, she had to look up Juneteenth on Wikipedia. She went on to write:

It’s a day to talk about the unfinished business of America’s original sin. It widens the conversation to include all the other ways the system — Jim Crow, redlining, the Tulsa Race Massacre — has wronged black Americans. Our nation’s history is too often glossed over or ignored. All of our stories have not been heard. And the only way — 155 years after the first try — to finally become one America is to listen. And keep learning.

Maya Angelou tells us: “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.


Happy Juneteenth everyone!
Erica Babino

For more information, please click:



Asian and Paciifc American Heritage Month

Image from San Mateo County Libraries

May has been designated Asian and Pacific American Heritage Month to help us remember and celebrate Americans who have backgrounds in this vast area of the world. We would like to join the celebration by offering you a chance to hear the voices of just a few authors and illustrators of Asian or Pacific heritage. Unfortunately we can't possibly represent them all here, but to help you explore further, we have also generated a resource list in our catalog of authors whose books we have in the library.

Here are the authors and videos we have chosen for this year's celebration:

Aisha Saeed, author of Amal Unbound, answers questions sent in by teachers and students for the 2018 Global Read Aloud.

In this very brief video clip, author Linda Sue Park discusses how long she has been in love with writing stories. Park has written many books, but is best known for A Single Shard, and A Long Walk to Water.

George Takei talks about his graphic novel, They Called Us Enemy, based on his experience locked behind barbed wire in an internment camp as a Japanese American during World War II.

Nidhi Chanani talks to ComicsVerse about Pashmina, comics, and more at New York City Comic Con 2017! (Scroll down to the podcast video.)

Gene Luen Yang has been an author and illustrator since fifth grade. In the clip below, he talks about his two-volume set Boxers & Saints, about the Chinese Boxer Rebellion.

Adib Khorram is an author, a graphic designer, and a tea enthusiast. Here he talks about his first novel, the Darius the Great is Not Okay, which features an Iranian-American teen living in Portland.


Hena Kahn, author of the novel Amina's Voice, answers questions about the book in this interview for having won the Texas Bluebonnet Award.


Fonda Lee talks about her Sci Fi novel Exo in this video. (Note: the complete video is quite long. Below we have started at 1:07, where Lee begins talking about the premise, main character, and how she came up with the idea. That segment runs through 4:04.)

Viet Thanh Nguyen is author of The Sympathizer and The Refugees among others. In the video below from PBS News Hour, he discusses what it means to be a refugee, as well as the book The Refugees and its stories.

Black History Month 2020

African American Read-In with Authors & Illustrators on YouTube

This year, Multnomah County Library celebrated Black History Month in part with a read-in on Saturday, February 8th. We celebrated the rest of the month by highlighting African American authors and illustrators each morning in C&C. We shared another person's reading, speaking, and thinking in a brief video, linked in a Bulletin announcement. Below are all the announcements in one place so you can view them as you'd like.

For Tuesday 2/11/20

Click here for our first clip, we invite you to enjoy Ashley Bryan speaking about hearing the written word. The clip goes until 7:24 (about 2 minutes)

For Wednesday 2/12/20

Click here for a short video of U.S. Representative, civil rights activist and author, John Lewis, speaks about his book March, vol. 1 (all three titles are available in MS Library). The clip lasts 1 minute 35 seconds.

For Thursday 2/13/20

Click here for a short video of author Rita Williams-Garcia during a “We Need Diverse Books” author visit. We have six of her books available in Catlin Libraries.  The clip goes until 1:26 (for 0:54).

For Friday 2/14/20

Click here for a five-minute video of author/illustrator, Faith Ringgold reading the entirety of her book Tar Beach.    

For Monday 2/17/20

Click here for an inspirational two minutes with Portland native, Reneé Watson and co-author, Ellen Hagen from their recent book Watch Us Rise.

For Tuesday 2/18/20

Click here for a description by author Varian Johnson of his 2019 Coretta Scott King Honor Book The Parker Inheritance, which is available in our library. Play the clip until 2:46 (1 minute 6 seconds).

For Wednesday 2/19/20

Click here to watch author Jacqueline Woodson read from her autobiography, that she wrote entirely in poems, Brown Girl Dreaming. The reading runs until 2:00 (1 min 23 sec).

For Thursday 2/20/20

Click here to hear artist Christian Robinson talk about illustrating for young children. The clip lasts 2.5 minutes.

For Friday 2/21/20

Click here for a reading by poet Nikki Giovanni of three of her pieces: Am She, Nikki Rosa, and My House. 2 minutes 38 seconds.

For Monday 2/24/20

Click here to enjoy Jason Reynolds reading from his most recent book, Look Both Ways, a Coretta Scott King Honor Book for 2020. The clip ends at about 4 minutes.

For Tuesday 2/25/20

Click here for Kekla Magoon speaking about her book: Rock & River (to 0:58; for 44 seconds) & about the civil rights movement (to 3:53; for 2 minutes 59 seconds).

For Wednesday 2/26/20

Click here to listen to award winning author Walter Dean Myers speak for one minute about his book Monster (to 3:22).

For Thursday 2/27/20

Click here to hear Angie Thomas perform one of the rap battle raps from her recent book On the Come Up (to 1:37).

For Friday 2/28/20

Click here for a reading by Kwame Alexander of his award-winning book The Undefeated. Published in 2019, it won the 2020 Caldecott Medal and Coretta Scott King Illustrator awards, and is a Newbery Honor Book. Alexander is a poet, who worked with artist Kadir Nelson on this wonderful picture book about indomitable spirit.