The Catalyst Anti-racism Newsletter - Issue 22

Thursday, April 27, 2023
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Welcome to the 22nd issue of The Catalyst Anti-racism Newsletter.

The Catalyst provides the University community with monthly updates from individuals and teams working across campus to counter systemic racism and oppression and highlights excellence from Black, Indigenous and other racialized groups.  

View the past issues of The Catalyst.  

In this issue:

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Message from the editor

Vivek Goel shares vision for Waterloo at 100 at President’s Forum

The hybrid forum was an opportunity for staff and faculty to hear from President Goel how the Waterloo at 100 vision will help guide the University into an uncertain, yet promising future.

Hosted as part of the 2023 Staff Conference, the President answered a wide array of questions from both an in-person and online audience about the future of the University.

Remote video URL

Anti-racism across campus

Waterloo welcomes an Eagle Staff

People gathering for the Eagle Staff Ceremony

Originally published by Waterloo News on March 27, 2023 

On March 27, the University of Waterloo community came together to welcome an Eagle Staff to our institution. The day began with a Sunrise Ceremony followed by a formal introduction ceremony held at Federation Hall. The ceremony began with drumming from the Cedar Hill Singers and a procession, followed by a prayer of thanks led by Elder Bill Woodworth. Indigenous Knowledge Keeper, Elder Myeengun Henry, introduced the sacred Eagle Staff on behalf of the University’s Indigenous community, marking an important step in Waterloo’s journey towards reconciliation.

Read the entire article on Waterloo News.

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Inaugural Black Film Festival hailed as a resounding success 

Attendees at the Black Film Festival

Originally published by the Daily Bulletin on April 3, 2023 

The Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Anti-racism office (EDI-RO) teamed up with the Congress of Black Women (Waterloo Region chapter) and Princess Cinema to host the inaugural Black at Waterloo: Black Film Festival in March. The purpose of the festival is to expose the Waterloo Region to the diversity of Black cinematography and to highlight opportunities in the Black Canadian film industry to Black youth. In an effort to reduce barriers to youth participation in the film festival, organizers provided complimentary tickets to high school students in the region, who were desirous of attending and discounted tickets to university students.

Read the entire article on the Daily Bulletin.

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Staff feature

Beyond the Bulletin banner featuring Darrell Adams

Darrell Adams, associate head football coach at Waterloo, discusses his anti-racism work and what motivates him on and off the field with Pamela Smyth from Beyond the Bulletin.

Listen to the podcast.

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Research spotlight

Welcoming more Black and Indigenous excellence 

Paul Ugor, Jay Havens, Laura Mae Lindo, Rowland Keshena Robinson

Originally published by Waterloo News on April 3, 2023 

The Dean of Arts, along with members of the departments of Communication Arts, English, Philosophy, and Political Science, are very pleased to welcome four new faculty members who join Waterloo as part of the Black Excellence and Indigenous Excellence hiring initiative. 

“I’m so delighted to welcome our new colleagues to the Faculty of Arts,” says Sheila Ager, Dean of Arts. “The Indigenous Excellence and Black Excellence hiring initiative marked a significant step for the University of Waterloo in recognizing our responsibility to shape a more equitable and inclusive academic community. We still have a long way to go in our journey toward greater diversity in our Faculty and in our goal of institutional decolonization. But our four new colleagues, through the substantive contributions they have made and will continue to make in scholarship, practice, and teaching, already show how much richer our community becomes with diverse membership. So, a warm welcome to Jay, Laura Mae, Rowland, and Paul!” 

Read the entire article on Waterloo News.

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Alum feature

Q&A with Lehlé Baldé, 2022 Arts Young Alumni Award recipient 

Lehlé Baldé

Originally published by Waterloo News on March 13, 2023 

A third culture kid and global citizen, Lehlé Baldé (BA ’13) grew up in eight different countries. She was drawn to study communications through the legacy of her grandmother Guita Sadji, a journalist in post-colonial 1960s Senegal. Today in Nigeria, she’s an award-winning media professional. Most known for her work as the pioneer editor of BusinessDay’s weekly publication, she is a well-respected media professional, moderator, event host, producer, International Monetary Fund fellow, and advocate for sustainable development, particularly financial inclusion. In 2022 she was named to Forbes Africa’s 30 under 30 list.

Read the entire article on Waterloo News.

The importance of the humanities in inclusive innovation 

Samantha Estoesta

Originally published by Waterloo News on March 7, 2023 

Samantha Estoesta (She/her) (Honours BA '13) is an equity in innovation advocate, a design thinking facilitator, a product manager and a mother. With over a decade of experience in equity, diversity, and inclusion advocacy, she centers her efforts on creating experiences that elicit a sense of belonging. She has been at TD since 2017, exploring ways to infuse equitable decisions into innovation processes, leading to her promotion as Project Manager, Social Innovation Specialization in 2022. When she's not indexing more resources on the Equity Resource Hub or busy helping to create a more equitable world, you can find her walking the trails around Downtown Kitchener with her husband (Justin), daughter (Morgan), and Shiba Inu-Jindo mix (Rosie).

Read the entire article on Waterloo News.

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Bulletin board

Register for the Anti-racism Reads: May event featuring an in-person discussion on the book Minor Feelings: An Asian American Reckoning

Facilitator: Sarah Menzies, Anti-racism Specialist, EDI-R 

Guest: Janice Jo Lee, artist 

When: Tuesday, May 30 | Noon to 1 p.m. 

Where: Dana Porter Learning lab, third floor 

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