Black and Brown Summit

Reviving Our Roots Through Courageous Conversations

November 18, 2017 — Highline College

purpose

Goal

To empower and motivate our Black and Brown young men to excel in academics and to accept nothing less than excellence from self.

Objectives

  • Critique social structures that inhibit Black/Brown young men from being successful in education.
  • Highlight the achievements in spite of the obstacles/barriers that they face.
  • Contextualize their self identity socially, culturally, historically, and politically by giving the young men a sense of self and value of self.

Summit Archive

View proceedings from the 2016 Summit.



Free Admission  •  Free Breakfast and Lunch  •  Free Enlightenment

agenda View Adult/Chaperone Agenda

8:00 - 8:45 am Registration/Breakfast
8:45 - 9:00am Welcome
9:00 - 9:50am Keynote Address: Jason Chu
Who Is "We"?

#JustUs4Us — If "Justice" begins with "Just Us" coming together, then the first question must be: who is "us"? And what does it look like as we realize that justice for us will come not only through external social transformation but must also involve the work of transforming our emotional cores and personal spheres?

10:15am - 11:30am Professional Men of Color Panel
Panel Description

Exposure and interaction to professional men of color in our community is critical to youth’s ability to connect with role models, see their heritage reflected, and learn about the different possibilities for their futures. In this non-traditional and interactive Professional Men of Color Panel, students will have the opportunity to hear from professional men of color in our community who represent a variety of racial and ethnic backgrounds as well as industry diverse professionals. The panelists will share their personal stories, and discuss topics such as education, career, identity, and experiences. Students will also have the opportunity to ask questions in small group settings.

11:30 - 11:45am Break
11:45am - 12:30pm Leadership Activity
12:30 - 1:15pm Lunch
1:30 - 2:45pm
Workshops
Jabali Stewart
Peacemaking Circles: How we can share our truths

Race relations are not good in this country these days, and the majority of residents in the United States of America harbor pessimistic feelings about the future of race relations. Add to this the fact that most residents live in a homogenous environment, and there is a puzzle in front of us. How do we have the serious conversations that we need to have if we barely cross each other’s paths? Everyone agrees that conversations about race are difficult, and they are made even more so with such fragile relationships in place. We need a different mode of interacting with each other not only to have difficult conversations, but also to build stronger relationships. For six years a dedicated group of individuals from multiple institutions have been doing this work through peacemaking circles as passed on by the Tagish/Tglingit people. "Circle work emphasizes deep listening and giving voice to our own stories. It lessens power differences of role and position. Rather than back and forth dialogue, circles rely on the learning that comes from the collective wisdom embedded in the experiences and stories of all participants." When used to address the subject of race what is really happening is that participants are called to look upon their own understandings and biases. All present are called to do their own work. “Circles intentionally create a sacred space that lifts barriers between people, opening fresh possibilities for connection, collaboration, and understanding. Circles can hold the tensions and emotions that contribute to healing. The process is not about changing others, but rather is an invitation to change one’s relationship with oneself, to the community, and to the wider universe.” Please join us to learn more about how circles have been used around the city, and to experience a bit of circle first hand.

Omari Amili
Overcoming Obstacles

In this workshop we will discuss and learn about using an interdisciplinary approach to researching social problems and coming up with solutions. We will look at adverse childhood experiences, trauma, social norms, and more through the lens of various disciplines then figure out how to weave them together to create positive outcomes. For individuals who are interested in going into fields in which they will serve people from disadvantaged backgrounds this can be a very important factor in producing good results. People often focus in on specific areas and when the people they serve don’t seem to be doing better it’s hard to pinpoint the cause. If we don’t incorporate a comprehensive approach based on several different disciplines interacting with each other. We will begin by learning what interdisciplinary means so this workshop can be very beneficial for those with no prior exposure to interdisciplinary approaches.

Adam P. Haizlip
The Conversations We Never Had With Our Pops...

Inspired by the works of Dr. Alfred W. Boykin, Dr. Breyan Haizlip, and Deepak Chopra; this workshop experience is aimed at enhancing one’s awareness of self; intrinsic power; and the complexities of being young brown, and uniquely gifted. Workshop experience participants can expect to be engaged in a lively, critical exploration surrounding the progressive levels of manhood, masculinity (healthy and otherwise) and its intersection with Spiritual Laws for self–love, love, and success. Additionally, participants will be engaged in awareness building activities surrounding: Friendship, Peer pressure, Sex, Expectations, Tips for academic success, Purpose, Masculinity, Multiple Intelligences My Brothers you are invited to engage with me in a real way; ask me any question you ever pondered, or wanted to ask a paternal figure. However, in this environment I purpose and promise to operate in love, and candor; absent of manipulation.

Evan Silvers
Make It Possible

This is a workshop on the financial steps a young student must take to be financially ready for college. We will be going over savings/checking accounts, the power of interest, how building good credits helps you. We will show the power of building a financial legacy for their future, their families future and the next generation of our people. The workshop will include Power Point slides as well as interacting bits.

Aaron Modica and Diego Luna
This is Bigger than Football: Race, Media, and Masculinity

This workshop will use Colin Kapernick’s protest, and the whitelash that emerged in response to it, as a foundation with which to collectively engage whitestream institution’s detrimental impact on young men of color’s self-concepts and self-efficacy. Students will watch and unpack various film/media clips, be encouraged to dialogue with the co-facilitators, and craft social identity maps that visually depict the contrasts between how they understand themselves (self-expectations, their passions, and their sense of self) with how whitestream institutions - such as sports and schooling – understand and criminalize them. Using these maps, workshop participants will conclude the session with a round robin discussion focused on how they might challenge, and already challenge, criminalization as it occurs in their everyday lives. Proposed Outcomes: Name common stereotypes about men of Color, with an emphasis on athletes, depicted through media. Discuss how these stereotypes distort our ideas of manhood and masculinity for men of color Identify ways to challenge these stereotypes in their everyday lives.

Reggie Rogers Jr.
Academic Hustle

Academic Hustle is a presentation that will focus on the student and help them become aware of what is going on as far as their education, lifestyle and skills. The idea is to give the students tips and speak on previous and personal experience as a male student of color and what it means to be successful. The Academic Hustle is meant to show students what it means to build bridges with not only their peers, but with people who may look different or have different interest then their own. Yet through communication and uplift we as men of color can inspire one another to be as or even more successful as our European counterparts. The focus of the Academic Hustle is not degrade or look down upon other who are not like us, but again focusing on lifting as we climb reaching back down being your brother’s keeper and bringing them up with you.

Holy Chea
Storytelling: The Art of Connecting & Healing

Storytelling: The Art of Connecting & Healing will offer participants with an opportunity to practice active listening, using narratives as a social tool, and come to their own understanding of how stories can lead to healing.

Franklin Dailey
20/20- No Filters

What do you see when you see you? In an age where filters are normal, we can change how we look to people around us but we know what we see. We know what's really there and frankly that becomes the reason we use filters. It's also the reason society uses filters when they see us. Fear, lack of understanding, and past experiences shape perceptions and one thing we know is that, perception is reality. Our greatest resource we have to change what society sees us is to change the way we see ourselves. The way we see ourselves tells us how far we can go. It tells is how high we can reach. It tells us how big we can dream. The reality is that if we see ourselves as insignificant we will literally, subconsciously, sabotage our own success by our broken perspective. What is REALLY there? Let's learn to take off the filters and operate with 20/20 vision. We might have some changes to make but we are strong enough to make them. We might need some help but there is help. Let's change our future by changing what we see.

Jose S. Gutierrez Jr.
CONTROL, COMPETENCE & CONFIDENCE: How To Conduct Yourself & Survive During Encounters With Law Enforcement & Authority Institutions

An interactive workshop covering helpful advice for people of color regarding conduct during encounters with law enforcement. This poignant and timely presentation involves the audience’s thoughts and feedback while sharing vital information about media perception & analysis, the criminal justice system, action steps and personal responsibility.

Brendan Nelson
Barriers to Economic Justice, Wealth, and Employment for Boys and Young Men of Color

In this workshop we will explore economic inequities and barriers that impact life outcomes for boys and men of color. By the end of the workshop, young men will: Learn about the unequal distribution of wealth in the United States, particularly through the lenses of race and gender. Explore barriers to employment and wealth for young men of color in Washington State. Explore mindsets of scarcity and sufficiency and the impact they have on the US economy.

Aaron Reader
The "Cheat Code"

Men of color often times enter learning spaces that have pre-existing barriers making it an uneven playing field. This is the "Cheat Code" to overcome those systemic and institutional barriers. This interactive workshop will expose men of color to ways they can use their own skills and abilities as success strategies. The workshop will provide them with practical tools to navigate and negotiate dominant culture spaces. It will highlight their innate ability to be successful. Strategies will include: effective communication, code switching, problem solving and mastering stressful situations as they relate to education and personal life.

Michael Tuncap,Trayvon Webster, Patrick Sitama and Austin Escalera
Black, Brown & Profound: the Brotherhood Mixtape

Students will develop an understanding of the shared history & contemporary struggle between Pacific Islander & African American men in the Northwest. What are the challenges that we face? How do we build unity & solidarity among men of color? Learn how to build student organizations such as the Black Student Union & Pacific Islander Club at your school. We will use Hip Hop, Athletics & indigenous dance to teach you hands on community building skills. Our brotherhood training will provide you with a space for healing & inspire you to bring out the warrior scholar inside of you.

2:45 - 3:00pm Snack
3:00 - 4:00pm Debrief/Closing

registration

Registration for the 2017 Summit has reached capacity and is now closed.

In order to create the best possible environment for growth, learning, and empowerment, please take note of the following:

Although we have allowed 8th grade students to attend in previous years, the summit is now reserved for high school students only.

You are in for a tremendous day of enlightenment and fellowshipping. You young men deserve this day and this day is for you to be recognized as assets in our communities. Our mission at the summit is to have you leave knowing that you, your fellow classmates, and other young men of color have the ability to put posturing aside and work together to combat all stereotypes and perceptions.

I acknowledge that I have read the above statements, understand the summit’s expectations and mission, and am ready to engage and succeed!

Frequently asked Questions

Registration

Do I need to register for the summit?

YES. ALL ATTENDEES, BOTH STUDENTS AND ADULT CHAPERONES, MUST REGISTER TO ATTEND

When I tried to register, it said that registration had closed. Is there a waitlist I can get on?

Unfortunately, we are unable to have a waitlist for the summit. Registration is capped at our capacity plus 30 percent, which takes into account the substantial number of no-show attendees on the day of the summit.

I forgot to register/registration is closed. Can I just show up to the summit?

Only registered students will be guaranteed admittance to the summit. If an unregistered student shows up on the day of the summit, they will be required to wait in the will call area until all registered students have been processed. In the event that there is still space available after all the registered students have been admitted, unregistered students will be admitted in the order that they arrived. After we have reached capacity, any remaining unregistered students are required to leave the campus for liability purposes.

Attendance

Why can’t middle school aged students attend?

Although we have allowed 8th grade students to attend in previous years, the summit is now reserved for high school students only for the following reasons:

Maturity level: The planning committee strives to bring presenters and topics to the summit that speak to current events and issues important to young students of color. As many of the topics discussed revolve around the dense and multi-faceted issue of social justice, many middle school students do not have the comprehension level needed to both engage in, and respect, this dialogue.

Behavior: Attending the summit requires students to have the strong personal responsibility and critical listening skills that are more common in older students; we simply do not have the staff or the ability to continuously monitor individuals who need to be reminded consistently to behave appropriately.

How long is the summit?

The summit is an all-day event, from approximately 8:00am to 4:00pm.

What if I arrive late?

We cannot facilitate late arrivals. Our registration and check-in tables open at 8:00 am sharp and close promptly at 9:15 am when the keynote speaker begins. IF YOU ARRIVE AFTER 9:15 AM, EVEN IF YOU HAVE REGISTERED, YOU WILL NOT BE ABLE TO ATTEND THE SUMMIT.

Cost, Location, and Programming

How much does it cost to attend?

The summit is FREE to attend.

Where is the summit?

The student summit is located in the Student Union Building (Bldg 8) on the Highline College campus, with adult chaperone programming located in Building 7. Individual student workshops are held in various classrooms on campus; students are escorted by summit volunteers to and from these classrooms.

Do I need to bring my own food?

No. Breakfast, lunch, and snacks will be provided for you.

What workshops will I be attending?

Workshops will be assigned as students are processed through the registration table the day of the summit.

I want to see a particular workshop presenter. How can I ensure a seat in his specific workshop?

To ensure equal workshop sizes, students are assigned a workshop. Students are not able to choose their workshops. However, workshop presentations are thoroughly screened by the Black & Brown Summit Planning Committee to ensure each workshop is equally informative, engaging, and impactful.

For Adult Chaperones

I’m an adult chaperone for a school/organization but I don’t know which students I’m bringing yet. Can I just hold some spots?

No. All attendees (both students and adults) must be registered individually to attend. We can NOT hold spots under any circumstances.

I’m a chaperone and some of the registered students I was supposed to bring can’t come. Can I substitute different students in their place?

No. If a student or adult has registered but is unable to attend, they cannot substitute another individual.

As a chaperone, will I stay with my student throughout the day?

No. Adult chaperones/attendees and students are on different activity tracks in different buildings. The summit is for the students and part of the impact of the summit comes from being able to have real, open dialogue. Please respect this space and understand that you will be reconnected with your students at the close of the summit.

I’m a chaperone who is bringing multiple students. Can I send you a list of the students attending instead of registering them all?

We greatly appreciate attendees or adult chaperones registering themselves and/or their students. Having attendees or chaperones directly enter their information increases accuracy, so we politely ask that you register attendees individually.

I want to see a particular workshop presenter. How can I ensure a seat in his specific workshop?

As the summit is geared focused and created for high school aged males, chaperones are not permitted to sit in on these workshops; adult chaperones are able to view the keynote speeches remotely but have a fixed adult chaperone agenda in an adjacent building.

This is a valuable, transformative event that I want to be a part of. How can I get involved?

If you would like to volunteer at next year’s Black and Brown, please contact Rashad Norris or Rickitia Reid.

My students received a t-shirt/lanyard/giveaway item. Do adult chaperones also receive giveaway items?

Unfortunately, adult chaperones are ineligible to receive giveaways. As Highline absorbs the entire cost of the summit, we decided to limit giveaways to students to increase the quality and quantity of items they receive.

Will all my students stay together if I bring a group of students?

One of the values of the summit is to encourage meaningful conversations and create new friendships. In order to facilitate this, students are assigned to workshops by individual rather than by school. Some students in you group may end up in the same workshop by chance, but it is highly unlikely that you student group will stay together for the entirety of the summit.

keynote speaker

Jason Chu

Jason Chu is a rapper and poet. His music is a weapon to stave off the inexorable collapse of humanity. Jason has performed and spoken around the country and internationally, including performances at the White House and The Getty Museum. You can follow him @jasonchumusic on all social media or visit his website for more information.

presenters

Jabali Stewart

Jabali has been involved in education, with every age group, in some form or another for nearly two decades. In 2011 he became the Director of Intercultural Affairs at The Bush School where he still works today. He is a trained peacemaking circle keeper, and is also trained in other art of hosting technologies. This work forms the foundation of his current practice.


Omari Amili

I am a formerly incarcerated author and faculty member at South Seattle College. I came from a very disadvantaged background and became a product of the school-to-prison pipeline. Upon my release from prison, I utilized post-secondary education as a way to turn my life around. Although I was a dropout with a GED, I was able to work my way up to earning a Master's degree and I'm working to help others do the same.


Brendan Nelson

Brendan is the President and Founder of Nvision Professional Services, a company that offers coaching for personal and professional development. He recently published a leadership curriculum for boys and young men of color titled "Stepping Into Greatness," and is currently teaching this in local schools with hopes of expanding across the Pierce and King County area. He is truly a leader that believes in creating other leaders by discovering, developing, and deploying these individuals back out into our community, ready and eager for success.


Evan Silvers

I am a graduate of the University of Washington class of 2015. This past January I opened my State Farm Agency in Capitol Hill. We are a minority based team and work hard to be financial literacy coaches to our clients and our community.


Aaron Modica

Aaron Modica was born and raised in Oakland, CA. He attended the University of Nevada, Reno where he received his MA in Sociology, and the University of Washington, Seattle where he earned his M.Ed in Social and Cultural Foundations of Education. Prior to teaching at Highline College, Aaron worked with the Upward Bound Program and Student Success Services TRIO programs, and the Center for Student Cultural Diversity at the University of Nevada, Reno. Aaron Modica is currently faculty in Sociology at Highline College.


Diego Luna

Born and raised in small town California, I've worked as an educator for most of my life. A recent arrival to the Highline College community, I am a teacher in the new Ethnic Studies department.


Aaron Reader

Aaron Reader, born and raised in Oakland, CA moved to Washington in 1997. After high school he attended Saint Augustine's College in Raleigh NC, where he received his BA in Psychology and received his Master's Degree in Counseling Psychology at Argosy University, Seattle. Aaron has worked in higher education for the past 10 years. He is the Dean of Student Success at Renton Technical College. In addition to his work in higher education he has a passion for poetry and spoken word. Aaron has been recognized as a local spoken word artist who has a powerful, emotional, real, and conscious style. He facilitates workshops on creative writing with an emphasis on social justice.


Franklin Dailey

I grew up in Tacoma, Wa, in an area called Hilltop. In my home there was domestic violence and outside my home there was gang violence. Not knowing who my father was crippled me in terms of manhood because the only example of manhood I had was what I saw around me, brokenness. Over time and through the transforming power of Jesus Christ I am able to stand now as a husband and a father of 5 children. We don't have to become what we see or what statistics say we should be. As an Associate Pastor at Overcomer Covenant Church I encourage Young Adults and Youth students that they have a destiny greater than they can imagine and that they aren't limited by their circumstances.


Holy Chea

As a native of Southern California, Holy came to Tacoma, Washington in 1994. He graduated from Whitworth University with a BA in communications and a minor in sociology. He currently works for School's Out Washington as the Pierce County Quality Manager where he provides services and guidance for organizations to ensure all young people have an equitable opportunity to become their best selves through adulthood.


Reggie Rogers Jr.

Reggie Rogers Jr. is a Seattle native, who grew up in South Seattle. Reggie attended Chief Sealth High School playing and then attended Washington State University. While at Washington State Reggie would join many group he is a former BMMAD (Black Man Making a Difference) President and since 2013 a member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Incorporated. While on campus Reggie was also the NPHC president and a member of the Black Student Union.Reggie received his bachelor in Sociology and a minor in anthropology; and for a year would work with Sped students as a paraprofessional for the 2013-2014 school year. After that Reggie would return to Washington State to receive his Master’s in Education Leadership. Reggie currently works for Treehouse with students in the Federal Way School district. Reggie enjoys volunteering, listening to music and working with youth whether it be a focus on education, coaching or officiating basketball and lastly attending marvel films.


Adam P. Haizlip

Adam P. Haizlip M.Ed.- Loyal and devoted husband, father of three daughters, and a community of sons. Adam earned a Master's of Education, in Higher Education Administration from Georgia Southern University in 2013. Since then, Adam has served as a university professor, and student affairs practitioner both in the United States, and the United Arab Emirates . Currently Adam serves his Alma Mater Central Washington University as the Associate Director of West Side Student Life. Adam is recognized as a strategic and forward thinking, boundary pushing, life long learner, lover and leader. Did I mention the brother stays BOW TIE FLY!


Jose S. Gutierrez Jr.

Jose S. Gutierrez Jr. was born in California’s Bay Area and hails from Pacoima in The San Fernando Valley. Raised in Olympia, Washington he and his sister were reared in a household led by a mother who personified hard-work, excellence and best efforts only. He is a professional writer/editor, music/film/TV producer/director, scholar and professional in the various areas of discipline, including Hip-Hop Culture, Media & Communications, Public Speaking, 'Gangology', Multicultural Education & Competence, Sexual Education & Rape Prevention and he is a college professor teaching at four institutions. Mr. Gutierrez has proudly served our communities as a law enforcement official specializing in communications, restorative justice, negotiations & mediation, special & joint operations and has worked from municipal to international agencies, having served with honor, integrity and award-winning distinction. Mr. Gutierrez is founder of The Edutainment Academy, Black/Brown Men Making A Difference, Hip-Hop 4 The Homeless and proud member of The Universal Zulu Nation, The Temple of Hip-Hop and The Union of Hip-Hop. Mr. Gutierrez continues to pursue his passions as an executive coach & consultant as well as a mentor and educator of those in need. His desire is to do his best at whatever he plans and attempts, and to achieve outcomes that benefits himself and our communities.


Michael Tuncap

Tuncap has born in Aniguak, Guam and was raised in Tacoma / Lakewood. Professor Tuncap has worked in education for 18 years as a professor, counselor, adviser, program manager and director of diversity at GRCC, Highline, NWIC, SPSCC, UW Seattle, UC Berkeley, City College of San Francisco & the Evergreen State College.


Conrad Trayvon Webster

Conrad (Trayvon) is a doctoral student at the University of Washington-Tacoma studying educational leadership and currently, serves as a College Preparatory advisor at Auburn Mountainview High School where he provides high school students with academic and college planning support to equip them with the tools to successfully navigate the college admissions process. His position also includes delivering content resources group mentoring through the Hometown Mentor Program. Committed to academic achievement, Conrad uses storying telling as a form of liberation through education, his work inspires audiences to use their lens to visualize their power to organize change.


Austin Escalera

I was born on the island of Guam and I am currently attending South Puget Sound Community College pursuing a major a in Cultural Studies. I am the president of the Pacific Islander Club at SPSCC and like to get involved in different community events and outreach to high school students to show that there is a presence of Pacific Islander and POC on college campuses.


Dominique Davis

Dominique Davis is Founder and CEO of Community Passageways, where he works to improve racial parity in schools, prisons and communities. He sits on the King County Juvenile Justice Equity Steering Committee where he works with King County Superior Court judges to address racial inequity in the juvenile justice system, Our Best Advisory Council to advise the Mayor and City leaders on a long-term strategy to support young black male achievement, the Immigrant Family Institute Community Advisory Committee, and the Mayor's Youth Opportunity Initiative Justice Advisory Committee. He has previously served as Co-Director of the 180 Program, which was named 2015 Best New Nonprofit by Seattle Foundation and Seattle Met Magazine under his leadership. Dominique received the NW Justice Forum's 2017 Restorative Justice Award and was recently named one of the Most Influential Seattleites of 2017 by Seattle Magazine. He also enjoys being a coach and personal trainer in the community.


Vidal Hillard

Vidal Hillard went to Foster High School in Tukwila where he recognized his passion for nursing after volunteering in the ICU/PCU at Highline Medical Center. He worked as a Certified Nurse Assistant while completing prerequisites at Tacoma Community College before entering the nursing program at Highline College. While attending Highline College he served on multiple groups including the National Student Nurses Association, Highline College Nursing Club, and Mary Mahoney Professional Nurses Organization. As Treasurer of the nursing club at Highline College, Vidal helped coordinate a mentorship program for the nursing program to facilitate the transition into nursing for new students. Vidal has also volunteered in multiple health and blood pressure screenings for kids and adults in the community. Vidal is currently a staff member in the Emergency Department at Auburn Medical Center where he strives to educate patients on promoting and maintaining health. He is also preparing to complete his bachelor in science of nursing degree at the University of Washington Tacoma to broaden his foundation in nursing and better serve those in his community.


Mohamad Shibly

My name is Mohamad Shibly and I am a math teacher at Evergreen High School. I grew up in the West Seattle area in a mixed-race and Muslim household. I have a passion for working with youth and have done so since my senior year of high school. I am a very positive person who enjoys celebrating the successes of others and celebrating each and everyone's culture.


Tigil Beshir

My name is Tigil Beshir. I was born and raised in Ethiopia. I moved to the United States in 2010 at age 33. I am currently a Highline College Nursing student starting my 4th quarter in the RN program and employed as a nursing assistant to build my skills while in school. As a first generation immigrant, I had to start from scratch to get where I am today. For most of the past 7 years, I have worked two jobs to provide for my family and pay for school. I always look for ways to save time for family, church and community involvement regardless of my busy schedule.


Charles Irons

Charles Irons is a former Highline College Student and currently a Certified Public Accountant for Pacific Propeller International. After moving to West Seattle at the age of 12, Charles excelled in sports and the classroom, earning a full academic scholarship at the end of his freshmen year at Chief Sealth High School. Graduating from Highline in 2011 and obtaining his bachelor's degree from Seattle University, He is now looking to give back and share his experiences with the new generation.


Bam Mendiola

Bam is the son of immigrant farm workers and grew up in migrant communities before attending Whitman College in Walla Walla, WA. Since then, he's become a rock climber and alpinist--climbing all 5 Washington stratovolcanoe--while exploring the intersection of nature and social justice. Bam identifies as a QPOC and hopes to see brown faces reflected in both academia and the backcountry.


Marcus Harden

Born and raised in the glorious south end of Seattle, Rainier Beach to be specific. I have been blessed to serve in the White House to the house on the corner and all points in between. My passion is being both and window and a mirror for young people to see and actualize the greatness already within them. I am the unofficial mayor of the south end and the Batman of Skyway.


Daniel Atkinson

Daniel Atkinson received his PhD in ethnomusicology from the University of Washington, Seattle and is currently an independent scholar. His research focus is on African American vernacular expression and its interaction with the global landscape. He is currently working on the first historical biography of Vaudevillian and founding father of the Harlem Renaissance, George W. Walker (1872-1911).


Markus Smith

I am a first generation, non-traditional college graduate. My lack of black male role models as a youth has required me to reach back out to the younger generation now that I have my education and employment. I want to show face and be a positive role model and help out in any way that I can.


Elijah Wallace

Originally from San Francisco California. I have a BS from UC Davis in genetics and a MS in genetics from the University of Washington. Presently I am the biology instructor for the Office of Minority Affairs and Diversity, Instructional Center at UW.


Mohamed Logman

My names is Mohamed Logman. I'm a first generation college graduate. I have a degree in Electrical Engineering and i'm pursuing my Masters in Computer Science. I work at the Boeing Company as a Software Engineer.


Shaun Worthy

I’m a owner of a mentoring and youth development organization. I’m a 27 years old full custody father who has developed programs for middle school and high school students. I’m current student at highline as well going for my bachelors in youth development.


Justin Dampeer

I'm a higher education professional passionate about helping students of color navigate difficult systems. I enjoy helping students discover their personal and career interests and how to use those gifts in the world.


Jesse Johnson

My name is Jesse Johnson and I am currently working as a Human Resources Strategic Partner with Highline Public Schools and am also a candidate for Federal Way City Council. I graduated from the University of Washington with both my Bachelors in Political Science and Masters in Education. I hope to one day operate my own Social Justice Academy for Black Males.


Jesus Martinez Garnica

I'm a recent graduated from UW with a degree in Literature. I'm currently working as an AmeriCorps member at Highline College assisting to Highline support center and White Center Programing.


Zachary McKinlay

My name is Zach McKinlay and I was born in Tacoma Washington and graduated from Mount Tahoma High School in 2008. I attended the University of Washington and received a Bachelor's degree in Sociology soon after graduating again in 2012. I have worked multiple years for non-profit organizations such as the Y as a youth development professional supporting students from all backgrounds. Currently, I serve as an admissions counselor for the University of Washington (My alma mater) through the Office of Minority Affairs and Diversity. I work in Multicultural Outreach and Recruitment where I am the African American recruiter for the University of Washington. I have been in this role for 2 years where I serve 23 high schools from Everett to Lacey Washington. With my team, we provide access and resources for underrepresented minority students to help them successfully matriculate to the University of Washington. My hobbies include reading, nutrition, youth development, basketball and more. Growing up, I never truly had a positive male role model growing up in a single mother household. Now I serve as a positive role model for youth, students and more.


Matthew Vaeena

Matt grew up in Oklahoma and moved to Seattle during college. He earned his Bachelor's degree from UW-Seattle and received his Master's degree from Seattle University. He's been active in youth work, particularly with Pacific Islander kids and other kids of color, for many years, and currently teaches English at Decatur High School in Federal Way.


Timothy Hall

Originally from Northern California, Hall was raised in Seattle and is a Garfield High School graduate. He works in government and is a film critic.


Aaron Garcia

Born in Guadalajara, Mexico. Raised in White Center WA. Advocate for my community, my people and access to higher education. Love me some of my abuelita's frijoles and Seahawks!


John Gaines

John Gaines is a youth advocate, Motivational Speaker, Corporate Project Manager and Founder of the PUSH for Dreams Leadership Academy. He is currently working on his Doctorate in Business.


Dominique J. Faga'autau

My name is Dominique "Dom" Jarvis Faga'autau and I am a proud alumni from Washington State University and Lincoln High School. I currently work for the Office of Multicultural Student Services at WSU as the lead Retention Counselor/Success Coach/Coordinator for a First Generation first year program called Smart Start and I coordinate all of our big events that cater over +3000 students of color at our university. I work with students who are at risk students to help them transition from high school to college but also to retain them at our university.


Clarence Baber

Born and raised in Skyway, Seattle WA. Graduated from Washington State University with a BA in history with the hope to become a teacher, one day a principal. I work at Mt Rainier High School as a case manager for an credit retrieval program. Hopefully my story and my experiences can help inspire those younger than me as my elders and mentors have done before me.


Jesse Rhodes

Jesse Rhodes is a finance leader in Amazon.com’s Finance Operations, where he oversees the team that is responsible for driving operational excellence through a culture of continuous inspection of their processes and key business initiatives. He is an accomplished executive offering extensive experience leading effective risk management strategy and seamlessly coordinating governance, processes, risk platforms and infrastructure for global organizations. Prior roles have included a series of progressively more influential leadership positions with Target, Walmart, Deloitte & Touche, and Ernst & Young. He is a certified information systems auditor (CISA) and is certified in risk and information systems control (CRISC). He is a graduate of Drexel University with a dual degree in management information systems and accounting. Mr. Rhodes is proud brother of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. He has been a proud member of National Association of Black Accountants (NABA) since chartering a student chapter on the campus of Drexel University in 1994. He has served in several board positions and is immediate past president of the NABA Philadelphia Chapter. Mr. Rhodes was featured by Drexel University in their LEAD Magazine Vol. 5 Issue 1 (Spring/Summer 2011) for his mentorship involvement within Deloitte, Drexel University, and the Philadelphia community. LEAD is the premier publication of the LeBow College of Business. Its aim is to engage its readers while serving as a resource of business information and inspiration.


Steve Primas, MSW

Steve Primas, MSW has a sincere desire to assist youth to discover their desired potential with a coach approach in achieving their personal goals. He currently works for the Office of Juvenile Justice & Equity (OJJE) as the Federal Compliance Monitor. His role with OJJE is to insure that youth experiencing the juvenile justice system is rare, fare, and beneficial for them. He serves on the WA Partnership Council to the Governor and is the support staff for the Youth Committee, where he offers youth in the juvenile institutions and as well as youth in the community leadership ventures. He is passionate about inspiring youth to become leaders, thus teaching Social Service and Criminal Justice courses at Pierce College. He has over 10 years of service as a social worker in Child Welfare and has worked with countless families in crisis, coaching and empowering them to a place of hope. He has worked with At-Risk youth for over 15 years, recognizing that At-Risk behaviors are heavily correlated to the absence of a parent and parental conflict. He coaches families through parent/child conflicts and reunification. A graduate of the University of Washington with a Master’s Degree in Social Work, with a concentration in children, youth, and families, he is a master in the art of interpersonal relationships.


Brian McRae, MS

I am a seasoned sales and marketing professional with over 15 years of experience. Currently the Associate Director of Recruitment and Outreach at Year Up, I have built my career having held a variety of roles at Kaplan University, Time Magazine and AT&T where I was a President’s Club winner two years in a row. I am a native of New Jersey and I hold a Bachelors Degree in Business Administration from Old Dominion University as well as a Masters degree in Marketing from Southern New Hampshire University.


Edward L. Wells

Edward L. Wells (Retired USAF), I entered the United States Air Force in October 1984. My background includes various duties at the squadron, sub-unified command and major- command levels including First Sergeant, Security Manager and Antiterrorism/Force Protection Superintendent, Law Enforcement Officer and Correctional Officer.


Qayi Steplight

I am interested in working with our young black and brown youth to empower them to learn more about our culture and build confidence in themselves that they can make a difference in our communities.


Joe Camacho

Joe Camacho is a biology teacher at Mount Rainier High School. He also volunteers as a Seattle Ambassador for Latino Outdoors and is an active member of SACNAS (Society for Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science). He is a graduate of University of Washington and Humboldt State University and loves to talk about the geology.


Josias Jean-Pierre

Josias Jean-Pierre is an author, speaker, educator, and a youth life coach. He is an alumni of Highline College class of 2013 and then went forth and finished at Northwest University with a Bachelors in communication with a minor in English and emphasis on youth ministry.


Ty Somerville

Currently I serve as the Assistant Director for the Masers in Public Administration Program at The Evergreen State College, Youth Pastor at my local church, youth Basketball Coach and mentor. Previously I served as the Associate Director of Admissions at The Evergreen State College and as the High School Program Director at Peace Community Center a nonprofit organization in the Hilltop Community of Tacoma, WA. Originally from New York I first came to WA in 2006 while serving in the US Army as a Communications Sergeant. My wife Timieko have been married for over 8 years and together we raise four children.


Thomas Bui

Thomas is a graduate of Kentridge High School, after graduation he studied and earned his Bachelors of Arts from Seattle University. Thomas currently works at Highline College as the Clubs Leadership Advisor overseeing a clubs program that has over 60 clubs a year. Outside of work, Thomas is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree and volunteering in the community to raise awareness around inequities that exist for communities of color specifically those in the Vietnamese community of Greater Seattle.


Roland A. Pablo

I was born and raised in Seattle, living in West Seattle my whole life. I graduated from Chief Sealth High School, and then the University of Washington with a Sociology Major and a Diversity Minor. I currently work as an Education Specialist at Treehouse, working mainly with 6th-12th graders in the West Seattle area.


Carlos Enriquez

I am a member of the Seattle youth soccer community. I work as a head coach with Seattle United and also serve as the Community Outreach Director for the club. In my role as COD, I work on bringing diversity to the club and extending support to underserved communities in Seattle. I am also going in to my 6th year in charge of the Garfield Boy's Soccer Program where I attended HS and played.


Malou Chavez

Malou Chavez is a staff attorney for Northwest Immigrant Rights Project in the Family Services Unit in Seattle, where she directly represents people in family-based visa petitions and defends people in removal proceedings. Her prior work in NWIRP's Moses Lake and Wenatchee offices focused on representing survivors of violence in rural eastern Washington obtain immigration relief. Malou received her undergraduate degree from the University of California, Los Angeles and she is a graduate of Seattle University School of Law.


Alan Jones

Alan Jones, has roots in Newport News, VA and Aurora, CO. Played professional football on various levels and currently works at Washington State University, as a Senior Advisor 2 in the office of Student Financial Services. Co-Chair of the Inland Northwest Juneteenth Coalition based in Spokane, WA ; and also a key member of the African American Graduation Celebration, which is held in Spokane annually. Member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Inc. Bachelors of Arts degree in Communications, minor Marketing (Univ. of Wyoming) Currently working of Masters in Sports Management.


Clinton Taylor

Clinton is heralded as one of the most powerful and engaging Inspirational Speakers and Life Development Professionals on the speaking circuit today. Clinton is referred to by his peers as Mr. Inspirational. Clinton has spoken too and conducted hundreds of high energy workshops locally, regionally at Colleges, High Schools, Middle Schools, Youth Academies, Drug and Alcohol facilities, Prisons, Correctional Institutions and Fortune 500 companies. In 2006 he founded Right State of Mind a consulting, training and speaking business dedicated to helping individual overcome obstacles and barriers that hold them back form reaching and maximizing their full potential in life. Currently Clinton is the program manager for the non profit organization Financial Beginnings a financial literacy program offering free financial literacy education classes for youth and adults in Washington State.


Bronson L. Edwards

As an ICF certified leadership coach and founder of UNcomman LLC, Bronson diligently exemplifies then inspires holistic evolution. He is a former Fortune 50 engineering leader, and cultivates agile excellence, convinced that stewardship is a 24/7 lifestyle. Raised in Georgia, with parents and nearly all family east of the Mississippi, Bronson promises to forever maintain his southern hospitality. He cherishes REALationships and captures opportunities to MAKE memories! Faculty, SeattleCoach and Program Manager, Snohomish County NAACP & Everett Community College Youth Development Program (YDP).


DeLon R. Lewis

DeLon R. Lewis is a Seattle/Kent, WA native and an alumni of Highline College. After graduation, he transferred to Portland State University, and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Communication. He is now a graduate student at Regis University, completing a Masters of Science degree in Software Engineering. Also, a brother of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., DeLon has a passion for reaching out to Black & Brown youth to see the next generation move onward and upward. In 2017, he became the president on the Board of the Urban Financial Services Coalition, Puget Sound chapter. Even while being dedicated to family and education, he still finds time to create hip hop music, and design a website for All Day Originals, LLC formed by fellow former Kentlake, Kentwood and Kentridge High School students.


Roderick Morrison

Roderick is an attorney who currently works in diversity & inclusion for the Seattle U School of Law's admission office. He has his bachelor degree from the University of Michigan and his law degree from the University of Illinois. Roderick has worked at several large universities across the country in various teaching and student development capacities and is an advocate for closing the educational and achievement gap. Roderick is an avid sports and music fan and is very passionate about working to improve and solve the obstacles facing underrepresented communities.


Aaron Pitts Sr.

I am a father of 2 boys and 1 girl. I am a mentor/life coach for Renton Area Youth and Family services. Originally from Rialto Ca, lucky enough to receive a Football scholarship to Iowa Wesleyan University. Ive Lived in Seattle for 5 years working in behavioral health and youth development. US national team and High school football coach.


Troy Landrum Jr.

Born and raised in Indianapolis, IN family of 5 sisters and two brothers. Graduated from Marian University (Indianapolis, IN) lived in Seattle for 4 years have worked in Youth Development for 6 years, as a Youth Pastor, YMCA Outreach Worker for Alive and Free and now as a Youth Life Coach for Renton Area Youth Services. Huge sports and Martial Arts fan, played college basketball in Illinois and studied the arts of Muay Thai and Boxing (participated in both as an Amateur Fighter). Passionate about seeing and guiding young people to live out their potential and dreams.


Bruce Lamb

Bruce teaches in the Legal Studies department at Highline College. He represents refugees as a volunteer attorney for Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, and has assisted DACA students. He has also served on the boards of directors, and staff of nonprofit organizations serving immigrant communities.


Patrick Sitama

Patrick Sitama has roots in Samoa and graduated from SPSCC in 2016. He is now completing his B.A from UW Tacoma.

location

Highline College is located at:

2400 South 240 Street, Des Moines, WA 98198

All Summit sessions will take place on the first floor of the Highline Sudent Union (Building 8)

View campus map →

Please email us if you have any questions.