Welcome to the Catalyst’s Community Voices platform. We’ve curated community leaders and thinkers from all parts of our great city to speak on issues that affect us all. Visit our Community Voices page for more details.
We have seen the protests. We have heard the protesters. Over the past few months, St. Pete residents have joined with thousands across our nation to lift their collective voice to express anger and sadness over George Floyd’s death, the unjust killings of countless other Black people in this country, and the persistent injustice faced by African Americans who want to participate and benefit from vibrant economies, or even just vote.
With issues surrounding racial inequity at the forefront of the national conversation, the University of South Florida recently announced a series of initiatives aimed at reinforcing its commitment to diversity and inclusion and supporting efforts to end racism in society.
The St. Pete Catalyst sat down, virtually, with Dr. Haywood Brown, USF’s vice president for Diversity, Inclusion and Equal Opportunity to discuss these initiatives, why they’re so important right now and how he’ll measure their success.
“I don’t ever want to write a play that only white people can be in,” Sheila Cowley said Thursday on The Catalyst Sessions, explaining why she insisted on a BIPOC cast for the Tampa Repertory Theatre’s virtual production of her drama Flying.
Casting people of color in the play, Cowley explained, was one of her conditions for letting Flying, which Tampa Rep performed in 2017, fly again. “I said I wouldn’t be interested in doing it any other way. Because, why not? If you’re gonna do it, let’s use this new medium to do something different.”
The virtual Suncoast Tiger Bay Club meeting was held Aug. 5 and featured a panel discussion with the four candidates running for the Pinellas County Commission District 7 seat. The candidates included:
Wengay “Newt” Newton
Frank Peterman Jr.