There are no recent bookmarks.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in TLH Symposium

Posted on 
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in TLH Symposium


What:  DEI in TLH: Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in TLH Symposium
Watch re-play here

Keynote Theme: It’s Time Y’all: Transforming Community through DEI (Powerpoint PDF linked below)

Who:  Council on Culture & Arts (COCA)
Institute for Nonprofit Innovation and Excellence (INIE)
United Partners for Human Services (UPHS)

Keynote Speaker: Mariama Boney, President and CEO of Achieve More, LLC

Facilitators and Panelists:
Taylor Biro – Director of Strategic Initiatives for the Florida Council Against Sexual Violence
Christal Cherry – CEO, The Board Pro
Darryl Jones – Vice-Chair, Leon County School Board, District 3
Antonio Montoya – former Executive Director, Domi Station
Kelly Otte – Founder and Interim Executive Director of the Oasis Center for Women & Girls
E. Marie Sissle – Executive Director, SoMo Arts
Del Suggs – nationally-renowned singer, songwriter and motivational speaker

Moderators: Felina Martin, INIE; Kathleen Spehar, COCA; Amber R. Tynan, UPHS

When: Monday, June 21, 2021, 10:00 a.m. To 12 p.m.

Where:  Virtual/Zoom

TALLAHASSEE, FL. — Local nonprofit leaders from the Council on Culture & Arts (COCA), Institute for Nonprofit Innovation and Excellence (INIE), and United Partners for Human Services (UPHS) will host a virtual symposium on Monday, June 21 at 10 a.m. about Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) in Tallahassee and the surrounding community. The virtual event will include vivid and candid conversation about racial injustice, discrimination, and overall equality. Participants will register to participate in the full symposium that includes breakout groups, panel discussion and Q&A opportunities. The online event is free and open to the public.

The keynote speaker will be Mariama Boney, President and CEO of Achieve More, LLC, a small woman and minority-owned consultancy. As a facilitator of organizational transitions, Mariama empowers individuals to move through discomfort so they can find shared purpose and create frameworks for constructive dialogue and action planning. The theme of the keynote address is “It’s Time Y’all: Transforming Community through DEI.”

“When we exercise care and compassion towards ourselves and others, we can openly believe, honor, appreciate, celebrate, support, and achieve the equity, access, and inclusion, plus justice that we need, deserve, and aspire to for our world,” explains Boney. “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion allows our level of curiosity and inquiry to deepen about each other – to provide enough energy for us to stay engaged in dialogue, in relationship, and in partnership.”

As an active volunteer leader and alumnus of the ASAE Diversity Executive Leadership Program (2008-09), Mariama has served in several leadership roles for associations, non-profit, and alumni groups. She is the author of “VENT: I’m Worth It: A Journey to Refocus, Realign and Restore” and “VENT: I’m Worth It: Leadership Edition.”

At the conclusion of the keynote address, attendees will move into breakout rooms for conversation and sharing. The symposium will conclude with a panel discussion featuring local community leaders as facilitators and panelists, including Taylor Biro, Christal Cherry, Darryl Jones, Antonio Montoya, and Del Suggs.

The non-profit partners, COCA, INIE, and UPHS, are Tallahassee-based nonprofit organizations focused on strengthening and amplifying the sector’s voice through advocacy, education, community engagement and cross-sector collaboration. In response to current events and input from the community, this nonprofit cohort turned their efforts toward DEI and a community conversation.

“The opportunity to have a safe space to share experience and learn from others is critical to the process of seeing change occur in our community,” explains Felina Martin, Executive Director, INIE. “Careful consideration was put into selecting the keynote speaker, breakout facilitators and panelists so that all of our neighbors can listen, learn, heal, share and act to change racism and discrimination.”

Amber Tynan, Executive Director for UPHS agrees.

“It is essential as we look to establish an equitable system of care, one that centers client voice and experiences in our policies and practices while also setting the standard for our community,” Tynan adds.  “We look forward to co-hosting this DEI Symposium to highlight areas of opportunity, as well as ways our entire nonprofit sector can be a driving force in achieving what’s best for those we serve.”

Kathleen Spehar, COCA’s Executive Director, asserts commitment to DEI among sector leaders is key.

“The pandemic cast a spotlight on systems, practices and policies that can sustain inequity. We choose to see what the light reveals and not let it blind us to this truth. This is an opportunity to learn, listen and find new ways leaders can shape the cross-sector collaborations needed to place equity as the core from which our systems operate.”

N.B. The beautiful artwork of Tallahassee artist April Fitzpatrick was used for promotional purposes for the symposium. More info about April can be found at


Submit Listings

Additional Resource Guides: