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Thursday March 4th

Commission on History, Race And A Way Forward discusses future plans for inclusivity

<p>Screenshot from the University Commission on History, Race and a Way Forward meeting on Monday, Feb. 22, 2021.</p>
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Screenshot from the University Commission on History, Race and a Way Forward meeting on Monday, Feb. 22, 2021.

The University Commission on History, Race and a Way Forward announced its plans to partner with the local organization Turn of Events at its meeting on Monday. 

Assistant vice president for the Duke-Durham Neighborhood Partnership and Community Development Mayme Webb-Bledsoe leads Turn of Events. The commission’s partnership with the organization will lay the groundwork for commission priorities in the future — and the commission said the goal of the partnership is to focus on inclusivity for UNC community members. 

The commission also heard updates from its subcommittees at the meeting.

What’s new?

  • The commission heard reports from the Archives, History, Research and Curation and the Engagement, Ethics and Reckoning subcommittees.
  • The Archives, History, Research and Curation subcommittee discussed the history of slavery at UNC. “This is really helping to deepen the understanding of political and financial impact on the founding and growth of UNC," committee member and University Archivist Nicholas Graham said. 
  • The commission also introduced its partnership with Turn of Events. The program will create a series of consensus workshops that will guide the commission in its plans and priorities for the next two years.
  • “The organization would be very much aligned with the principles and values of this commission and our focus on making sure that community voices are involved in our priority-setting," commission Co-Chairperson Patricia Parker said. 
  • To elaborate on these plans, the commission hosted three guests from the Turn of Events facilitation team, including executive director of the Pauli Murray Center for History and Social Justice Barbara Lau, principal consultant at Murphy Dynamics LLC Monica Murphy and Webb-Bledsoe.
  • The meeting stressed the commission’s core value of inclusivity. Guest speaker Webb-Bledsoe explained the importance of community voice. Turn of Events wants to work with the commission to “create a process that will allow individuals to see themselves in the work and to be able to understand what it is when we want to be in community with one another,” she said. 

What’s next?

  • The next full commission meeting will occur on March 22 at 3 p.m.

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