Disability & Philanthropy Webinar Series:
Racial Equity and Disability

Click here for a full transcript of the webinar.

Disability cuts across all identities, but the impacts of systemic disability discrimination disproportionately affect disabled people of color. Amid the ongoing inequities revealed by the COVID-19 pandemic and the fight for racial equity, it is more important than ever for philanthropy to engage in learning directly from people of color with disabilities. Learn from disability advocates Conchita Hernández Legorreta, D’Arcee Neal, and Taryn Williams in this crucial conversation moderated by Chicago Community Trust CEO Dr. Helene Gayle. This event took place on February 4, 2021.

This free webinar was the first of a four-part series focusing on the intersections of disability with key issues, made possible by the Presidents’ Council on Disability Inclusion in Philanthropy. We encourage you to visit our curated selection of resources on the intersections between race and disability.

About the Panelists

Moderator: Dr. Helene Gayle, CEO of Chicago Community Trust and member of the Presidents’ Council on Disability Inclusion in Philanthropy

Dr. Helene Gayle has been President and CEO of the Chicago Community Trust since October 2017. She has authored numerous articles on global and domestic public health issues, poverty alleviation, gender equality and social justice. A previous CEO of the international human rights organization CARE, she spent 20 years with the Centers for Disease Control, working primarily on HIV/AIDS. Under her leadership, the Chicago Community Trust has adopted a strategy to focus on closing the racial and ethnic wealth gap.

Panelist: Conchita Hernandez Legorreta, Maryland Blind and Low Vision Specialist, disability rights activist and co-founder of the National Coalition of Latinx with Disabilities

Conchita Hernandez Legorreta is the Maryland Blind and Low Vision Specialist and doctoral candidate in special education at George Washington University. She is the founder and Chair of METAS (Mentoring Engaging and Teaching All Students) a non-profit organization that trains educators in Latin America that work with blind/low vision students and other disabilities and engages with policy. She has written about her disability and immigrant experience on the Rooted in Rights blog.

Click here to view an excerpt of Conchita speaking about the impacts of ableism and racism on immigrant.

Panelist: D’Arcee Neal, PhD student in English, instructor, digital media assistant and editor at The Ohio State University

D’Arcee Charington Neal (he/they) is a professional storyteller, and 2nd year doctoral student at The Ohio State University in English and Disability Studies, focusing on the intersections of black digital media and disabled erasure within Afrofuturism. When not theorizing about black techno-agency, he works as a disability and writing consultant, and professional speaker for clients like Conde Nast, Uber, NASA, The World Bank, The Ford Foundation, and many non-profits. Ultimately, as a queer disabled digital griot, he believes that the future can and should be both, accessible, and in Wakanda, forever.

Click here to view an excerpt of D’Arcee speaking about the intersections between ableism and anti-Black racism.

Panelist: Taryn Williams, Managing Director, Poverty to Prosperity Program, Center for American Progress

Taryn Williams is managing director for the Poverty to Prosperity Program at the Center for American Progress. She is the former Chief of Staff and Youth Program Director at the Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) at the U.S. Department of Labor. Previously she was a liaison to the disability community at the White House, and policy adviser on the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.

Click here to view an except of Taryn speaking about the need to work towards economic justice with a disability-explicit lens.