Past Diversity Dialogues

Diversity Dialogues, Achieving Greater Workplace Equity for LGBTQ Employees presentationOver the last decade, FAS Diversity Dialogue series has covered a wide variety of topics in the field of diversity, inclusion, equity and belonging. FAS Diversity Dialogues are genreally offered three times during the academic year, and now include a summer panel. Working together, we hope we are helping to influence the FAS culture and environment so that FAS is recognized as a safe place to learn with and about each other, with the chance to apply this learning to our work.

See below for information on specific Diversity Dialogues from the past several years, including topics, dates, speakers, and links to livestream recordings and related Harvard Gazette articles.

Past Diversity Dialogue: From Moment to Movement

Critical Reflection is the root of personal and organizational growth and change. Only when we become powerfully aware of our feelings, biases, and obstacles can impactful change begin. As we like to say, "You can't change what you don't acknowledge." At the last Dialogue, Crystal Fleming, PhD '11, asked us to reflect critically around meeting the moment of racism and COVID-19. She stated that awareness, however, is not everything. Awareness without action leads to continued stagnation. In fact, awareness without action can even be considered hypocritical. In her follow up dialogue, Dr. Fleming will explore strategies for powerfully moving into action toward equity and breaking down barriers in the process. A video recording of From Moment to Movement is available.

Date: Thursday, April 22, 2021

Past Diversity Dialogue: Meet the Moment... Again!

"We are tired.  Tired of the senseless murders of unarmed Black men.  Tired of the violence against Black people and people of color.  Tired of talking about it.  Tired of people not understanding.  Tired of being tired.  Despite this, we must take care of our families, ourselves, and keep up our engagement in our work.  Sometimes it seems like we cannot catch our breath.  Today we will learn how  to acknowledge the things that are making us tired and we’ll learn about ways that will help us meet the moment and get our second wind." A video recording of Meet the Moment...Again is available here.

Date: Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Mental Health as an Invisible Dimension of Diversity

Mental illness is an “invisible disability” not always apparent to others and can significantly impact one's daily living, including their time at work. According to the National Alliance on Mental Health, one out of five adults in the U.S. (46 million people) experience mental illness in a given year. It is no wonder that managing the intersection of employee performance and mental health has risen to the surface for many managers and is now considered an “invisible” dimension of diversity. Mental illness can impact anyone at anytime. Moderated by Callie Crossley, WGBH host of Under the Radar, the panel of experts will help us to better understand what mental health is, how it impacts the workplace, and will identify best practices for managing situations related to mental illness at work. Practical advice on how we can help to create and support a more inclusive and supportive FAS environment for this dimension of diversity will also be shared.

Date: Thursday, August 22, 2019

From Diversity to Inclusion: 10 Years of Dialogue

Over the last ten years, the FAS Diversity Dialogue series has sparked conversation about diversity, equality, and inclusion in the Harvard community and beyond. Join us for a retrospective look at the state of diversity and inclusion, discussion of current issues and practical guidance on how we can move toward greater inclusion and belonging at Harvard. We are pleased to announce that our keynote speaker will be Tim Wise, prominent activist, author and educator. In addition to the keynote, the conference will include a moderated panel discussion, lunch, a book signing, and an opportunity to meet colleagues and to learn more. The recorded livestream of the conference is available to view here on the FAS Human Resources YouTube Channel.

Date: Thursday, April 25, 2019

Silence is a Statement: Understanding Race in the Workplace

Allison Manswell, MBA, Certified Professional in Learning & Performance
There are many complicated reasons why we, as a nation and as individuals, often avoid discussing race at work. As a result, significant disparities in hiring, development, promotion and salary continue to exist along racial lines. Current events are demonstrating a strong need to address this topic openly and help move us forward as a nation and as individuals in our workplace. Watch the recorded livestream. The Diversity Dialogue with Allison Manswell was recently covered by the Harvard Gazette. The article is available to view here.

Date: Thursday, November 15, 2018

Authenticity at Work

Mike Robbins,Certified Speaking Professional
Mike Robbins spent his early years as a student and athlete in various diverse communities in California. After an injury ended his professional baseball career, he was able to pursue his passion of empowering and inspiring people. An expert in teamwork, leadership, and emotional intelligence, Mike Robbins delivers keynotes and seminars that encourage individuals to be more authentic with themselves and others. In this dialogue, Mike will share research and experiences from his own life to help others bring their complete and authentic selves to the workplace.

Date: Thursday, April 19, 2018

Flying Lessons and Other Stories

Moderated by Callie Crossley, WGBH host of Under the Radar, a panel of YA authors will discuss the learnings and perspectives shared in the book Flying Lessons and Other Stories. A diverse and inclusive story collection that is as humorous as it is heartfelt, this impressive group of authors has earned among them every major award in children’s publishing and popularity as New York Times bestsellers. Book can be found at your local independent bookstore or via online retailersClick here to view a recording of the event.

Date: Thursday, August 31, 2017

Muslim Feminism

Celene Ibrahim, M.A., M. Div., Ph.D. candidate
Celene Ibrahim provided guidance for ensuring that the workplace is a hospitable one for Muslim women. Beyond providing practical advice, this cultural competence awareness helped participants understand that being Muslim and being feminist are not incompatible. Fas Diversity Dialogue: Muslim Feminism

Date: Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Identity Threat at Work

Mary Murphy, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, University of Indiana
Katherine Emerson, Ph.D., Research Associate, Mills College
This engaging workshop focused on research that demonstrates how situational cues contribute to disparate psychological experiences for racial and ethnic minorities at work. The speakers provided guidance to help alter threatening cues and create more equitable, respectful, and inclusive environments. Opening Remarks by Claudine Gay, Ph.D., Professor of Government and of African and African-American Studies and Dean of Social Science for the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Harvard University Read the complete Gazette story here.

Date: Thursday, March 31, 2016

Exploring and Empowering Intergroup Racial Dialogue

Keith Maddox, Ph.D., Associate Professor of  Psychology, Tufts University
Sam Sommers, Ph.D., Associate Professor of  Psychology, Tufts University
This interactive presentation focused on the latest scientific research regarding intergroup racial dialogue and provided practical advice on how to effectively engage in racial dialogue. Series Opening Remarks by Lisa Coleman, Ph.D., Chief Diversity Officer and Special Assistant to the President for Institutional Diversity and Equity. Read the complete Gazette story here.

Date: Thursday, October 29, 2015

Lessons Learned from the Chilean Mine Rescue

Amy C. Edmondson, Ph.D., Novartis Professor of Leadership and Management, Harvard Business School
This interactive, case-based discussion focused on the real-life leadership and team collaboration lessons learned from the 2010 Chilean Mine Rescue. Series Closing Remarks by Rakesh Khurana, Ph.D., Dean of Harvard College, Marvin Bower Professor of Leadership Development, Professor of Sociology and Co-Master of Cabot House, Harvard University. Click here to read the Harvard Gazette story covering the event.

Date: Thursday, April 30, 2015

Cultural Intelligence: Why Higher Ed Needs It

David Livermore, Ph.D., President of the Cultural Intelligence Center (CQC), Researcher and Author
This interactive lecture provided practical guidance for developing and applying cultural intelligence in your role as a Harvard community member. Series Opening Remarks by Rakesh Khurana, Ph.D., Dean of Harvard College, Marvin Bower Professor of Leadership Development, Professor of Sociology and Co-Master of Cabot House, Harvard University. Click here to read the Harvard Gazette story covering the event.

Date: Thursday, October 30, 2014

Relationship Building in Culturally Competent Organizations

Eddie Pate, Ph.D., Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion, Avanade Inc.
This interactive lecture provided practical advice and guidance on creating relationship systems that support the development of a diverse workforce. Introductory remarks by Peter V. Marsden, Edith and Benjamin Geisinger Professor of Sociology, and Dean of Social Science, Harvard University. Click here to read the Harvard Gazette article covering the event. View the video from the Dialogue.

Date: Wednesday, December 11, 2013


Michael Sidney Fosberg, actor, author, activist
This one-man performance will explore our perceptions of identity, stereotypes, race and family history. Introductory remarks by Mahzarin R. Banaji, Richard Clarke Cabot Professor of Social Ethics, Department of Psychology; Senior Adviser to the Dean on Faculty Development.

Date: Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Almost a Woman

Esmeralda Santiago, author, screenwriter, and essayist
This presentation will explore themes of inclusion, migration, culture and sexuality through the personal stories and experiences of Esmeralda Santiago. Introductory remarks by Judith D. Singer, Senior Vice Provost for Faculty Development and Diversity; James Bryant Conant Professor of Education. Click here to read the Harvard Gazette article covering the event.

Date: Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Inclusive Leadership: Managing Successful Teams

Connie Wong, Founder and Managing Director, CSW Associates
This interactive presentation focused on the need to develop our ability to lead diverse teams, and provided guidance on how to build a culture of inclusion. Introductory remarks by Evelynn Hammonds, Dean of Harvard College and Barbara Gutmann Rosenkrantz Professor of the History of Science and of African and African American Studies, Faculty of Arts and Sciences. Click here to read the Harvard Gazette article covering the event.

Date: Thursday, December 15, 2011

Past Diversity Dialogue: Better Understanding the Moment

By introducing us to critical race theory, Crystal Fleming, PhD '11, will explain how systemic racism exposes us to racial ignorance and she will provide a road map for transforming our knowledge into anti-racist change. When harmful ideas about race, stereotypes and biases are left unchallenged, discriminatory behavior is fueled, and the lives of black and brown people are devalued. Join us as we learn with Dr. Fleming, who seeks to inspire and empower those who are committed to building a more just society.  An author and scholar, Dr. Fleming will show us how to leverage our racial literacy for anti-racist awareness and activism. Dr. Fleming is Professor of Sociology and Africana Studies and Associate Faculty in the Department of Women's, Gender & Sexuality Studies at SUNY Stony Brook. A video recording of "Better Understanding the Moment" is available.

Date: Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Mental Health and Ethnicity

As shared in Dean Gay’s announcement of this year’s Dialogues, the FY20 Diversity Dialogues will endeavor to build awareness and community related to individuals who possess invisible dimensions of social diversity. Our first Dialogue will focus on Mental Health and Ethnicity. We look forward to hearing from experts on various topics such as mental health and its intersection with ethnicity, resilience, and the intersection of mental health with societal issues related to ethnicity/immigration. Our guest moderator will be Renee Graham, editor and columnist from the Boston Globe. Guest speakers will be Professor Kristen Lee, Associate Teaching Professor and Lead Faculty, College of Professional Studies, Northeastern University and Professor Tracy Robinson-Wood, Professor of Counseling Psychology, Department of Applied Psychology, Northeastern University.

Date: Monday, November 18, 2019

Achieving Greater Workplace Equity for LGBTQ Employees

Stephanie V. Huckel, Senior Global Program Manager, Diversity & Inclusion, IGT
Fifty-three percent of LGBTQ employees hide who they are at work. They question their workplace’s commitment to them while they simply desire an experience equitable to that of their heterosexual and cisgender peers.  This dialogue will provide participants with the tools necessary to communicate with and to LGBTQ employees in a way that sends the message “You are welcome here.” Watch the recorded livestream. The Diversity Dialogue with Stephanie Huckel was recently covered by the Harvard Gazette. The article is available to view here.

Date: Thursday, February 7, 2019

The Importance of Inclusive Spaces and Symbolism

As part of Harvard's Presidential Task Force on Inclusion and Belonging, creating spaces that are inclusive, including language and symbolism, is recognized as an important step the University can take to pursue excellence on a foundation of inclusion. But what does that all mean? Moderated by Callie Crossley, WGBH host of Under the Radar, we'll hear from Harvard colleagues on the value and importance of assuring that spaces, symbols, and gatherings are reflective of, respectful of, and accessible to the diverse populations that exist across Harvard.

Date: Thursday, August 30, 2018

Truths About Race

Anthony Peterson, Adjunct Instructor and EdD candidate, Leadership and Professional Studies at Trevecca Nazarene University
Anthony Peterson is an African-American, self-proclaimed “Army brat” who is passionate about the power of the written and spoken word. With degrees in psychology and religious education, he has developed and facilitated diversity education at a wide range of companies and organizations for nearly two decades. Anthony’s diversity discussions took a different turn in 2014, when his five-year-old white grandson asked, “Am I white or am I black?” In conversation with Callie Crossley, host of WGBH’s Under the Radar, Anthony will draw from his life story, current research, and discussions with his grandchildren to explore social narratives about race in the 21st century.

Date: Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Overcoming Obstacles: Managing Complex Intersectionality

Eric Alva, Retired Staff Sergeant & Gay Rights Activist and Spokesperson for the Human Rights Campaign
A powerful inspirational speaker, Eric Alva discusses his battle to overcome his injuries and the difficulties he encountered after leaving military life. From learning to walk with a prosthetic, to his desire to continue his education and get his degree, Alva shows audiences that it is important to never give up. As a Hispanic disabled vet and a gay man, Mr. Alva will share his story with us, including the opportunities and challenges he faced as he managed these four intersections of diversity in his life. Click here to view a recording of the event

Date: Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Intersectionality 101

Laurie A. Nsiah-Jefferson, Ph.D., Senior Scientist and Senior Lecturer, Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis University
In this presentation, Dr. Nsiah-Jefferson provided an overview of intersectionality as a theory and concept. It also described the benefits of utilizing this concept to promote diversity, equity and inclusion in the workplace and beyond. Participants had the opportunity to engage with each other as they considered the implications of the application of intersectionality to the workplace.

Date: Friday, October 21, 2016

But I Don't See Color! Consequences of Racial Color Blindness

John Dovidio, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology, Yale University 
Through lecture and audience participation this interactive dialogue focused on the research regarding “aversive racism,” a contemporary subtle form of prejudice, and on techniques for reducing its impact. Read the complete Gazette story here.

Date: Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Race and the Media

A panel of experts, including Carole Bell, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Communications Studies, Northwestern University; Michael Jeffries, Ph.D., Associate Professor of American Studies, Wellesley College; and Rupa Shenoy, M.S., Reporter, WGBH News, explored with us how media portrayals of recent events in Ferguson, New York, Baltimore, and other cities help to frame our perspectives and opinions about race. Moderated by Callie Crossley, host of Under the Radar on WGBH-FM and Basic Black on WGBH-TV. Click here to read the Harvard Gazette story covering the event.

Date: Thursday, August 27, 2015

Religious Diversity in the Workplace: Fostering Inclusivity

Rev. Mark E. Fowler, Managing Director of Programs, Tanenbaum Center for Interreligious Understanding
This engaging workshop proactively addressed issues of religious diversity and inclusion, and provided tools for creating a more religiously inclusive work environment. Visit the Harvard University Pluralism Project to learn about religious diversity through research, outreach, and the active dissemination of resources. Click here to read the Harvard Gazette story covering the event.

Date: Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Cultural Competence: A Best Practice for Neutralizing Bias

Michael Sidney Fosberg, actor, author, activist
Where does one start the dialogue, and how do we effect change? White, black, male, female, gay, straight, religions, dialects, even names affect the way we see, talk with and otherwise interact with each other. This presentation demonstrated how we can respect and honor each other as individuals, using cultural competency as a baseline. Introductory remarks by David R. Williams, Ph.D., M.P.H., Florence Sprague Norman and Laura Smart Norman Professor of Public Health and Professor of African and African American Studies and of Sociology, Harvard University. Click here to read the Harvard Gazette article covering the event.

Date: Thursday, April 24, 2014

Managing Your Biases as a Step Towards Cultural Competence

Gail Price-Wise, M.S. ’86, founder and President, Florida Center for Cultural Competence
This engaging session focused on the topic of cultural competence, and how we must manage our own biases before we can truly become culturally competent. Introductory remarks by Joan Y. Reede, M.D., M.P.H., M.S., M.B.A., Associate Professor of Medicine, Dean for Diversity and Community Partnership, Harvard Medical School. Click here to read the Harvard Gazette article covering the event.

Date: Thursday, October 31, 2013

Coming to See Privilege Systems: A Surprising Journey

Peggy McIntosh, Ph.D., Associate Director of the Centers for Women, Wellesley College
This seminar will focus on the various dimensions of privilege and how we handle privilege, which can be the deciding factor between inclusion and exclusion. Introductory remarks by William R. Fitzsimmons, Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid to Students in Harvard College. Click here to read the Harvard Gazette article covering the event.

Date: Thursday, December 13, 2012

Microinequities: The Power of Small

Stephen Young, Co-Founder of Insight Education Systems
This seminar addressed the impact of a cumulative pattern of devaluing messages which can impair performance and productivity. Strategies were provided to help eliminate negative micromessages in our organizations. Introductory remarks by Michael D. Smith, Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences and John H. Finley, Jr. Professor of Engineering and Applied Sciences. Click here to read the Harvard Gazette article covering the event.

Date: Thursday, October 20, 2011

Blindspot: The Hidden Biases of Good People

Mahzarin Banaji, Richard Clarke Cabot Professor of Social Ethics, Department of Psychology and Senior Adviser to the Dean on Faculty Development, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Harvard University
This workshop presented the newest evidence about a specific blind spot that keeps leaders from selecting and retaining the best talent and making professional decisions that are in the best interest of our organizations. Introductory remarks by Allan Brandt, Dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Amalie Moses Kass Professor of the History of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, and Professor of the History of Science, Faculty of Arts and Sciences. Click here to read the Harvard Gazette article covering the event.

Date: Wednesday, April 11, 2012