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community development

There is a massive migration of black people moving out of California. Gentrification, incarceration, lack of jobs are rapid growing issues within the community. Due to the circumstances, how should black people begin rebuilding our families, neighborhoods, and community?



  • David Harris, Urban Strategies  
  • Pastor LJ Jennings
  • Alan Dones – SUDA
  • Regina Jackson – East Oakland Youth Development Center
  • Maurice Harold, The Harold Group


African Americans are embattled in a severe health crisis. According to the NAACP’s health Care fact sheet, HIV/AIDS and heart disease are the leading cause of death in African American the community. Further, approximately 3.7 million African Americans aged 20 years or older have diabetes. Despite accounting for nearly 13% of the United States population, African Americans have the highest rates of obesity in the country. Coupled with these statistics, African Americans also struggle with the stigma and fallout surrounding mental illness within our community. Participants in the Black Health & Wellness forum will discuss and explore solutions for combating these alarming health issues within the local urban communities.


  • Delveccho Finley, CEO, Alameda Health System
  • Michelle Hames, Senior Vice President, Kaiser Permanente
  • Mary Ann Jones, PhD, CEO, Westside Community Services
  • Ben Pettus, CEO, West Oakland Health Council
  • Tracy Ward, LSW, Kaiser Permanente



We want the collaborative support of our students from state and local government, educators, parents and community stakeholders to create and ensure viable, relevant educational opportunities that will empower our communities and improve the quality of life for its residents.


  • Dr. Siri Brown, Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs, Peralta Community College District
  • Jessica Black, Lead Organizer, The Black Organizing Project (BOP)
  • Yoel Haille, Political Director, The Afrikan Black Coalition
  • Dr. Macheo Payne, Senior Director of Equity and Educational Initiatives, Lincoln Families
  • Dr. Robyn Fisher, CEO, RT Fisher Educational Enterprises



Incarceration: The effect the public safety movement and its effect on our black community.


  • Mark Philphart, Senior Director, Policylink
  • Prince White, Urban Peace Movement
  • Brendon Woods, Alameda County Public Defender



There is a huge wealth gap on the economic ladder pertaining to the black community. Strategic steps are needed to solve this problem, such as rebuilding the wealth that was lost of the past 40 years and planning a transition to our next generation.

  • Crystal Cole Matson – African American Oakland Chamber of Commerce   
  • Steven Pitts, Bay Area Black Workers Center   
  • Melvina King, EdD, Peralta Community College District
  • Lauren Peebles, Esq.