14 2021

Liesl M. Blockstein Memorial Lecture (JSS, TBE)

10:00AM - 11:30AM  

Temple Beth El via Zoom

Contact Melissa Osborne
(608) 238-3123

Building a Jewish Midwest Racial Justice Coalition

Jewish Social Services is pleased to continue to co-sponsor, with Temple Beth El, the annual Liesl M. Blockstein Memorial Lecture. The event honors Liesl Blockstein, a woman who escaped from Hitler’s Austria in the 1930s and was a well-known force for justice and a leader in both the Jewish community and the wider community. The lecture always features a woman who embodies Liesl’s commitment to social justice and Jewish life.

This year's lecture features Shahanna McKinney-Baldon, director of Edot Midwest Regional Jewish Diversity Collaborative. A seasoned educator and racial equity thought leader, Shahanna has been involved in Jewish racial justice work that centers Jews of Color and diverse Jewish families for over 25 years. Last year, she launched Edot as a hub for this work in our Midwest region. (“Edot,” as used here, means “communities.”) Join us to learn about the story of Edot, what the work means in this moment, and how we can all play a part in a Midwest Jewish racial justice coalition.

More about our speaker: In addition to her role as founding director of Edot Midwest Regional Jewish Diversity Collaborative, Shahanna McKinney-Baldon also holds several appointments at the UW–Madison School of Education Wisconsin Center for Education Research, including that of special assistant for diversity and inclusion. She is a longtime educator and trainer who has been an active public education advocate and Jewish diversity thought leader for over 20 years. A former public school and Jewish day school classroom teacher, Shahanna has held leadership roles including chief diversity officer and director of family and community engagement for large public school districts, as well as synagogue education director and Federation high school program director. Shahanna is also a leader in equity education and advocacy work and has led local, regional, and national projects that focus on diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice, including in Jewish and other faith community settings and for a consortium of 30 US public school districts. Her current community activities include acting as lay co-chair for the Reconstructionist movement’s international Tikkun Olam Commission and sitting on the board of Reconstructing Judaism.

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Sponsor: Temple Beth El and Jewish Social Services