2020: NGen Fellows / Skinfolk and Kinfolk

Independent Sector

The 2020 American Express NGen Fellows cohort presented at Upswell 2020 which took place virtually between October 14-16, 2020. Their session, “Skinfolk and Kinfolk: Allyship in Action” invited participants to explore the nuanced ways Black, Indigenous, and other leaders of color are impacted by and can themselves perpetuate systemic racism.

Skinfolk and Kinfolk: Allyship in Action

Black, Indigenous, and other leaders of color can knowingly and unknowingly support systemic racism. Yet, so often, work around allyship in nonprofit and foundation spaces focuses on how white people, especially leaders, can be better allies to Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC). This focus misses the mark: It is crucial that this work happen among BIPOC leaders, as well. Independent Sector’s 2020 American Express NGen Fellows will use case studies, interactive discussion, and more to explore how BIPOC leaders can do the necessary work of allying together so that we can best enact the change we all want to see. While this session has been designed for BIPOC, these dynamics also show up in other marginalized communities (e.g., white disabled leaders can uphold the oppression of other disabled people). Attendees will come away understanding three ways that people with marginalized identities can ally with and support each other in fighting the various manifestations of racism and other forms of oppression in our respective spaces.

Meet the 2020 Fellows

Illustration copyright by artist Robert C. Liu-Trujillo
Illustration copyright by artist Robert C. Liu-Trujillo

Christine Balarezo
Collective Liberty
Denton, Texas

Monita Bell
Southern Poverty Law Center
Opelika, Alabama

Janelle Choi
Marguerite Casey Foundation
Seattle, Washington

Roque Diaz
MacPhail Center for Music
Minneapolis, Minnesota

Esther Gross
Child Trends
Bethesda, Maryland

Olivia Jefferson
Greater Twin Cities United Way
Minneapolis, Minnesota

Juvaria Khan
The Appellate Project
Washington, DC

Eric Lopez
Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility
Washington, DC

Selina Pagán
Metro West Community Development Organization
Cleveland, Ohio

Danielle B. Powell
Leadership 18
Alexandria, Virginia

Meghan Shea
Persistent Productions
Rockport, Massachusetts

Lillian Singh
Prosperity Now
Washington, DC

The American Express NGen Fellows Program is supported by

2018 Amex Leadership Academy Logo
Global Topics: Civil Society, Infrastructure, Nonprofit Health, Race, Equity, and Inclusion
Resource Types: NGen Fellows, Webinar