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Reversing Structural Racism In Maine; Series One: Understanding What It Is

August 3 @ 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

This week-long online event will be panel style webinars, inviting anyone wanting to do their part in reversing systemic racism.

Mon, Aug 3, 2020, 6:00 PM – Fri, Aug 7, 2020, 7:30 PM

We’ve seen many marches and protests over the past few weeks and we must take advantage of this universal movement of Black Lives Matter to push for change. Before we all go and fight the systems of oppression we must first identify and understand what structural racism is. What does it look like? How was it created? How does it impact you and others? And how do we dismantle it?
The goal of this series is to help participants develop this understanding to effectively take action. There will be opportunities to connect with experts to dissect the mental, social, educational, workplace, legal, and other forms of structural racial inequality. Every piece to the puzzle will create a mental map to lead us to the treasure which is full equality, peace and justice.

I am honored to present our speakers:

8/3 Monday (6-7:30PM)

Mental/Cognitive Science on Personal & Social Bias

Laura Ligouri [Mindbridge/USM]

8/4 Tuesday (6-7:30PM)

History Of Black Oppression; Black Resistance: A Brief Social Context

Professor Marcelle Medford [Bates College]

8/5 Wednesday (6-7:30PM)

Racist Policing and Policy (Criminal Justice)

Professor Brendan McQuade [USM]

8/6 Thursday (6-7:30PM)

K-12 Education/Curriculum (Our Primary Effects)

Alberto Morales [Portland Public Schools]

8/7 Friday (6-7:30PM)

Authority/Data; Defunding & Reinvest/Action Items

Erica King, MSW [USM],

Ali Ali [USM]

Speakers Bios:

Laura Ligouri is the Executive Director of Mindbridge, a nonprofit organization working to transform human rights through the integration of psychological and neurobiological applied science. (For more info visit: www.mindbridgecenter.org.) Laura is also a lecturer at the University of Southern Maine where she teaches the Neuropsychology of Implicit Bias.

Marcelle Medford is an Assistant Professor in the Sociology Department at Bates College. Her research and teaching interests lie at the intersection of urban sociology, immigration, race, and ethnicity. Specifically, she examines how black immigrants understand their own ethnically-specific identities in the United States. This shift in perspective explores how black immigrants produce ethnic boundaries that extend far beyond ethnic conflict with African Americans and incorporates dimensions of cultural performativity, nationality, political and class ideologies, transnationalism, and citizenship status.

Brendan McQuade is an assistant professor in the criminology department at the University of Southern Maine and author of Pacifying the Homeland: Intelligence Fusion and Mass Supervision. In addition to his academic research, he also writes commentaries, which have appeared in The Appeal, Counterpunch and Jacobin. Since moving to Maine, he has written op-eds for the Portland Press Herald and Bangor Daily News about police surveillance and advised city councilors and state representatives on those issues. As a scholar activist, Brendan is committed to thinking with social movements. He is a board member of the Visionary Organizing Lab and a member of the Democratic Socialists of America.

Alberto Morales is a High School Humanities English teacher at Casco Bay High School in Portland. Alberto has been a public school teacher for 21 years (18 of those in Portland). In addition to teaching Alberto has been involved in many of PPS’ equity efforts and co-teaches a Race In the United States class for teachers and administrators in the district as well as being a part of the Equity Cohort work in PPS. He has also participated in efforts to recruit teachers of color in the district and is collaborating with a Bowdoin Professor on interviewing teachers of color in the district to gain perspectives to inform retention and recruitment efforts.

Erica King, MSW is a policy and program developer, coach, facilitator who works as a Senior Policy Associate at the University of Southern Maine. Her experience in areas of research and data evaluation, program design, mediation, and social work complement her longstanding commitment to listening to and working with systems and communities to produce measurable results. Erica brings hard knowledge into her relational work with people to inform how data can drive meaningful conversations and intentional decisions to improve the health, well-being, and vitality of the youth, justice involved men and woman and their families around the country.

Ali Ali is an Ethiopian-American social activist. From human rights to community leadership, Mr. Ali addresses issues that continuously occur in silenced communities caused by systematic oppression. He is an Artistic Director with Maine Inside Out and an organizer with Maine Youth Justice. Mr. Ali also works in partnership with the Young People’s Caucus and Opportunity Scholars at the University of Southern Maine, which creates a bridge for formerly incarcerated young people to access post-secondary education .  As a formerly incarcerated young man, Mr. Ali works tirelessly as an activist and organizer on behalf of Maine’s most vulnerable populations. Mr. Ali lives in Portland. 


There is an initial $25 donation fee that will go towards a fund created for youth organizing on the ground specifically involving racial justice. If you wish to receive a ticket and cannot donate, please contact me directly at [email protected]

Extra donations are accepted through PayPal: ag207 or Venmo: @aali2020.

Thank you, and we hope you enjoy the event!


August 3
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm