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VIVA: Anti-Racism Webinar TF

Virginia's Academic Library Consortium

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Anti-Racism Webinar Series

Although 2020 was a year that was undeniably defined by the COVID-19 health crisis, it was also been a year that was undeniably defined by a surge in recognition of the historic, deep, and continuing social injustice faced by black people and all people of color. In June 2020, the VIVA Steering Committee put forward a statement against racism, the heart of which was a commitment to taking anti-racist actions.

As one of these actions, VIVA has developed a webinar series about a broad array of anti-racist topics and approaches.  The goal of this series, which runs along two tracks, speakers and discussions, is to build community through conversation, creating a space where people can talk through their projects, engage with scholars, and learn what libraries could and should be like if in fact libraries value diversity, equity, and inclusion. A task force has been created to help build cohesion across the series and recommended speakers both within and outside Virginia.

Speaker Webinar 2: LIS Faculty of Color & LIS Education

Dr. Renate Chancellor, Chair & Associate Professor in the Department of Library & Information Science at Catholic University of America, is the keynote for the second in VIVA's Anti-Racism Webinar Series: LIS Faculty of Color & LIS Education. Dr. Chancellor’s talk “Social Justice: Moving From Awareness to Action in LIS” will explore the broader historical context of the struggle for equity and inclusion in Library and Information Science.  

Information about the webinar can be found here:

Please register for the event here:

Dr. Renate Chancellor

Discussion Webinar 1: Leadership

Dr. Jazz Jackson, Chief Student Success, Equity and Inclusion Officer at Thomas Edison State University, will facilitate the first discussion session, held on Friday, July 30th from 12-1 pm, on the topic of leadership.  Dr. Jackson will guide attendees through a discussion of the framework presented by Elaine Westbrooks in the first speaker webinar of this series in an effort to move toward meaningful and attainable individual actions.

Please register for the event here:

Dr. Jazz Jackson

Speaker Webinar 1: Leadership

The first webinar took place on Thursday, February 25th and covered the topic of Leadership with a focus on leading at all levels of the library. Elaine Westbrooks, Vice Provost of University Libraries and University Librarian at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, gave the keynote talk, and there was a panel of librarians from VIVA libraries: David Heilbrun (GMU), Lisa Payne (JTCC), and Yasmeen Shorish (JMU).

"The Reckoning: Visioning and Planning a New Paradigm for Equity, Antiracism, and Social Justice in Libraries" / Elaine Westbrooks, UNC-CH; slides and video.

Elaine Westbrooks, UNC-CH


Task Force Members

Carmelita Pickett (Co-Chair)
University of Virginia

Jennifer Roper (Co-Chair)
University of Virginia

Heather Blicher
J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College

Jeremy McGinniss
Liberty University

Cyanna Rodney-Hill
Norfolk State University

Crystal Willis
Old Dominion University

Genya O'Gara
Virtual Library of Virginia

Anne Osterman
Virtual Library of Virginia