In 2016, ALF-MVC CEO Bonnie Ferreira (Class XII) was approached by Fellows, from several classes, to convene a sensible dialogue around the very serious issues of bias, poverty and social justice in light of tragic incidents of violence around the nation. We knew we would need strong resources in order to effectively address and establish some parameters around subject matter that’s both complicated and emotionally charged. After much thought and research two Senior Fellows were engaged to help us lead this work: Bill Kennedy (Class IX) and Cassandra Pye (Class X).
Bill is a Managing Attorney for Legal Services of Northern California and a member of the faculty for the Racial Justice Training Institute. He regularly conducts research and instruction in the field of implicit bias as a barrier to equal opportunity – particularly for advocates and leaders of community organizations. Cassandra is CEO of 3.14 Communications, in addition to possessing strong communications skills, she’s got a solid track record as a facilitator for leadership teams.
The pilot series consisted of (6) 2-hour sessions intended to explain the science behind implicit social cognition and the attitudes or stereotypes that affect our decisions and actions in an unconscious manner. In addition to raising awareness, potential interventions that can be utilized in decision-making wherever we ‘live’ and within our institutions were explored. The series will surprise you and keep you squarely outside your comfort zone. Here is a link to a brief two-pager which sheds more light on implicit bias.
The Cognitive Science of Unconscious Bias. Areas of exploration to include:
On January 20, 2017, KVIE aired Studio Sacramento episode "Unconscious Bias" in partnership with ALF. Sr. Fellows Bill Kennedy (Class IX) and Cassandra Pye (Class X) joined host and Sr. Fellow Scott Syphax (Class VIII) to discuss the ALF initiative and the tough but illuminating conversations from the Unconscious Bias Series.
In 2017, participants of the Unconscious Bias series expressed interest in gaining additional insights into the science of bias so that they are better equipped to spread the word. ALF CEO Bonnie Ferreira (Class XII), Bill Kennedy (Class IX) and Cassandra Pye (Class X) devised a two-day session to give participants time to understand the tools and exercises Bill used in our earlier programming (Unconscious Bias Series) as well as dive deeper into de-biasing interventions and privilege.
ALF is currently working on developing different "packages" of the implicit bias curriculum for community organizations. If you are interested in staff, board or other type of training please contact Bonnie Ferreira at (916) 920-5669 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.