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February 2018: O’sha Williams, Angela Flynn, Dr. Taino Palermo, Isabelle Yisak and Jess Brown at the Business Innovation Factory

Would you like to meet others leading the charge for educational equity? Interested in sharing ideas and resources with educators and leaders?

Join us for our EduLeaders of Color RI February Meetup! Our convenings focus on highlighting the work of educators and leaders within our state that are committed to equity in education. We are also intentionally hosting this meetup during the national and local movement: Black Lives Matter Week of Action. Attend the meetup and support leaders of color who are deeply dedicated and committed to transforming our system to meet the needs of historically marginalized communities.

The February 2018 meetup will be hosted at the Business Innovation Factory. The Business Innovation Factory (BIF) works with individuals, organizations, and communities who believe that business model innovation is on the critical path to transforming our most important social systems. BIF helps leaders design and test new business models in the real world. Learn more here:

Our speakers include:

O’sha Williams is originally from Jamaica Queens, New York and has lived in Providence, RI for almost 6 years. She is an 11th and 12th grade English teacher for students learning English as a new language at Dr. Jorge Alvarez High School where she gets the opportunity to work alongside her students as a community partner. O'sha is a graduate student from Brown University's Urban Education Policy program. She is passionate about establishing pathways for communities to be self-sustaining in every regard of education, particularly pipelines for the families served by PPSD to be more prominently represented among the educators, administrators, and legislators for this school district.

Angela Flynn is a seventh and eighth grade science teacher at the Gordon School in East Providence. She grew up and went to school in Kenya for Nursery to seventh grade before moving to the U.S. Her school there was an Aga Khan school, so she grew up learning a lot about the religions and cultural traditions of Sikhs, Muslims, Ismailis, Catholics and Hindus. She promotes equity, diversity, and inclusion in her teaching practice and has been passionate about teaching math and science to middle school students for the last ten years.

She recently created a lesson on The Science of Skin Color that was brought to life by a team of professional animators as a TED-Ed original lesson. The five-minute video is supplemented on the TED-Ed site by an online quiz, links to further resources, and discussion questions.

Dr. Taino Palermo has worked as an educator and nonprofit director for over 10 years working in New York, Massachusetts and Rhode Island focusing on urban public education, community development and urban sociology. He is the President of Palermo Consulting & Nonprofit Solutions and has launched, managed and/or directed nonprofit organizations specializing in the arts, education, social services, community development and economic development. Dr. Palermo has a history, personally and professionally, of advocating for underrepresented communities and urban youth. He has received numerous state and national-level awards for his professional accomplishments as well as his role as a community activist. He currently sits on the board for several nonprofit organizations, is a commission member for the Rhode Island Commission for Health Advocacy and Equity and is an appointed member of the Rhode Island Governor’s Overdose Task Force.

Isabelle Yisak is an Experience Designer at BIF. Isabelle uses human-centered research, design, and storytelling to engage students, teachers, and administrators in the co-creation and real-world testing of radical new models. She has worked on projects, such as exploring how teacher-led communities of practice might serve as a model for increasing teacher effectiveness and closing gaps that separate students along racial and cultural lines.

Prior to joining BIF she co-founded and served as the Chief Strategist of Kaya Collaborative, a student-created nonprofit that aims to inspire, educate, and mobilize youth in the Philippine diaspora as partners in long-term, locally-led social change in the Philippines.

Jess Brown is the Lab Manager in the Student Experience Lab at the Business Innovation Factory. In this role, she combines her passions for education and systems’ transformation. She implements strategizes and shares resources from the lab that utilizes human-centered design processes to research, design, prototype, and spread innovative education models. Prior to joining the BIF team, she co-founded 1vyG, the inter-Ivy, first-generation student network to catalyze student voices and build practices for student success through college.

As always, there will be food, wine, and beer to help you unwind!

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