It's Time to Talk: Forums on Race

YWCA Event

Past Keynote Speakers

It's Time to Talk 2018 - 신 선 영 Sun Yung Shin

Sun Yung Shin

신 선 영 Sun Yung Shin was born in Seoul, Korea, and currently lives in Minneapolis.

She is the author of the poetry/essay collections:
Unbearable Splendor (Minnesota Book Award);
Rough, and Savage
Skirt Full of Black (Asian American Literary Award)

Her other works include:
Author of Cooper’s Lesson, a bilingual illustrated book for children
Editor of A Good Time for the Truth: Race in Minnesota
Co-editor of Outsiders Within: Writing on Transracial Adoption
Along with poet Su Hwang she runs Poetry Asylum, which creates diverse poetry platforms.

It's Time to Talk 2017 - Carlotta Walls Lanier

carlotta walls lanier

The youngest Little Rock Nine member to integrate Central High School when she was just 14 years old.

A key protagonist in one of the most gripping watershed moments of the Civil Rights Movement, Carlotta LaNier delivers powerful keynotes that reflect on history while inspiring hope for the future. An icon of perseverance and strength, in her lectures LaNier revisits the journey of the “Little Rock Nine,” who led the nation on a turbulent path that challenged prevailing attitudes, broke down barriers, and forever changed the landscape of America. Her fascinating talks reflect on the history and current state of civil rights, race, and diversity.



It's Time to Talk 2016 - Justice Alan C. Page

Alan PageAlan C. Page received his B.A. in political science from the University of Notre Dame in 1967 and his J.D. from the University of Minnesota Law School in 1978. Page sought election to the Minnesota Supreme Court in 1992 and won, becoming the first African American on the court and one of the few associate justices ever to join the court initially through election, rather than appointment by the governor, and eventually became the biggest vote-getter in Minnesota history. He was reelected in 2004 and 2010 and served until he reached the mandatory retirement age of 70 in 2015. Law was Alan Page’s second career; Page was a first-round draft choice of the Minnesota Vikings in 1967 and he played for the Vikings until 1978. In 1971 he was named the NFL’s Most Valuable Player, becoming only the second defensive player in history to be named MVP. In 1988, Justice Page and his wife Diane founded the Page Education Foundation, which assists Minnesota students of color in their pursuit of post-secondary education. To date, the foundation has awarded over $13 million in grants to more than 4,500 individuals.

Click here to read Justice Page's Remarks


It's Time to Talk 2015 - R.T. Rybak

R.T. Rybak took office as Mayor of Minneapolis in January 2002, and was re-elected three times until announcing he would not again seek re-election.  Since leaving office in 2014, Rybak has been the Executive Director of Generation Next, an organization seeking to help close the achievement gap for minority students. Generation Next was announced in late 2012 as a broad-based partnership to focus the spending of millions of dollars already aimed at the achievement gap by backing the most effective among hundreds of programs dedicated to the issue. It involves education, community, government and business leaders trying to improve school performance for children from early childhood through early career years.