Center for Racial Dialogue and Social Justice

Center for Racial Dialogue and Social Justice

Our Mission and Vision


NVCC’s Center for Racial Dialogue and Social Justice supports the college’s mission to facilitate courageous conversations and promote positive change and healing in our community by providing opportunities for students, faculty, staff and community members to engage in respectful dialogue and learning opportunities concerning diversity and equity. 


To serve as a vehicle for dialogue and action.



Professor Kathy Taylor, JD
Founding Co-Chair

A Message from the Founding Co-Chair

"The brilliant intellectual and civil rights icon, James Baldwin reminds us that 'not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.' Here, at the Center for Racial Dialogue and Communal Transformation, we boldly face and have deep and meaningful dialogue around issues of race, injustice, systemic racism, power, hierarchy, and the multitude of ways that race shapes our experiences, interactions, and informs our perspective. In this space, we develop concrete plans of action, and offer intellectually challenging workshops that help people challenge and transform their thinking about race. We host book discussions, faculty forums, and community workshops - all in furtherance of one goal - making NVCC and our community more inclusive, equitable, and just. And I invite you to join us!"

- Professor Kathy Taylor, JD, Founding Co-Chair

Committee Members

Associate Dean Angela Chapman

Professor Joseph Faryniarz, Founding Co-Chair

Susan Houilhan, CAPSS Advisor and Retention Specialist

Professor Nikki McGary, PhD

Professor Julia Petitfere

Professor Ron Picard, PhD

Antonio Santiago, Dean of Danbury, Founding Co-Chair

Professor Elma Solomon

Professor Kathy Taylor, JD, Founding Co-Chair




Calendar of Upcoming Events

The Sum of Us  Book Discussion:

In collaboration with the Faculty Senate IDEAL committee, the Center will host a book discussion focused on articulating the benefits of a diverse community, the problems associated with a zero-sum perspective, and the cost to each of us when we fail to see our connectedness.  Join us Wednesday afternoons at 1 p.m. on 9/29, 10/27, 11/10, and 12/1, via WebEx for robust dialogue.

To RSVP , please email Kathy Taylor at or Ron Picard at

Back by Popular Demand: The Podcast Listening Party Returns:

With so many lists circulating, we have gathered some of the most thought-provoking episodes and podcasts to share and discuss, including  Asian Enough, Identity Politics, Intersectionality Matters, Tamarindo, The Diversity Gap,  and Yo, Is this Racist? Each month, we will share the episode and meet virtually to discuss our thoughts, share our perspectives, and ponder questions raised by the episode. Stay tuned for the first announcement, beginning the week of September 13.

Wednesday, December 1st from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.

Joining the Social Justice Series, the Center will explore the current controversy surrounding Critical Race Theory. Perhaps you have heard about the political debates concerning Critical Race Theory (CRT) and recent attempts at banning it in schools. But what is Critical Race Theory? Where did it come from? What is it really? And what is this debate about? Join us to learn more and share your thoughts.

Resources to Further Understanding

Americanah, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

An Indigenous People’s History of the United States, Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz.

Black Wealth/White Wealth: A New Perspective on Racial Inequality, Melvin L. Oliver and Thomas M. Shapiro.

Blindspot: Hidden Biases of Good People, Mahzarin R. Banaji, Anthony G. Greenwald. 

Categorically Unequal: The American Stratification System, Douglas S. Massey.

Catfish and Mandala: A Two-Wheeled Voyage Through the Landscape and Memory of Vietnam, Andrew Pham.

Class Matters: Cross-Class Alliance Building for Middle Class Activists, Betsy Leondar-Wright.

Growing Up Latino, Harold Augenbraum.

Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong, James Loewen.

Racial Divide: Racial and Ethnic Bias in the Criminal Justice System, Michael J. Lynch, E. Britt Patterson and Kristina K. Childs.

Talking Race in the Classroom, J. Bolgatz. 

The Genius of Language: Fifteen Writers Reflect on Their Mother Tongues, Wendy Lesser.

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, Michelle Alexander.

The Night My Mother Met Bruce Lee, Paisley Rekdal.

The Spirit Level: Why Greater Equality Makes Societies Stronger, Kate Pickett 

Outliers: The Story of Success, Malcolm Gladwell.

Promoting Racial Literacy in Schools: Differences That Make a Difference, Howard C. Stevenson.

Privilege, Power, and Difference, Allan Johnson.

Raising Race Questions: Whiteness and Inquiry in Education, Michael Ali. 

Waking Up White in the Story of my Race, Irving Debbie. 

“How to Talk About Race”:

Intergroup Resources’ “Talking about Race”:

Lowery’s “Bridging the Racial Divide Through CrossRacial Dialogue: Lessons and Reflections from My Experience as a Facilitator” in Journal of Critical Thought and Praxis. 

“Flipping the Switch: White Privilege and Community Building, Maggie Potapchuk, Sally Leiderman, Donna Bivens and Barbara Major”:

*If Beale Street Could Talk (2018):

*Just Mercy (2019):

*Selma (2015):

The Hate U Give (2018):

When They See Us (TV series based on a true story):

Cracking the Codes:

Race the Power of Illusion:


The House I Live In:

* [note: these titles are coming soon through our library’s Swank account:]

ADL: Fighting Hate for Good:

Resources from the Annie E. Casey Foundation:

Tools from Racial Equity:

Standing Rock Syllabus:

Resources from the Catalyst Project, Anti-Racism for Collective Liberation:

Interfaith Toolkit for Challenging Racism:

Black Lives Matter:


BGD: Amplifying the Voices of Queer and Trans People of Color:

Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society:

Racial Equity Alliance:

Zinn Education Project: Teaching People’s History:

Hispanic Research Center’s Cultural Competence Guide for Community Based Organizations:

W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s Racial Equity Resource Guide:

 Establishing an Equity Team:

National Association for Multicultural Education:

Southern Poverty Law Center:


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