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54 minutes | Nov 15, 2022
Episode 37: What's making voters vote?
On this episode of “Gathering Ground,” Mary sat down with Illinois State Representative Kelly Cassidy, Chicago Alderwoman Maria Hadden, and Minneapolis City Council President Andrea Jenkins to talk about some of this year's hot-button voter issues and how citizens can participate in making a change in their communities. Visit the main podcast page: gatheringgroundpodcast.com
56 minutes | Oct 26, 2022
Episode 36: Nothing About Us Without Us - Disability Justice
On this episode of “Gathering Ground,” Mary was thrilled to talk to Rahnee Patrick, Director of the Division of Rehabilitation Services for the Illinois Department of Human Services, and artist Sandie Yi. They discussed Rahnee’s experience at Access Living and the Department of Human Services and Sandie’s experience as an artist and disability culture worker.
69 minutes | Sep 28, 2022
Episode 35: Roe v. Wade - What Now?
In response to the Supreme Court's 5-4 decision to strike down Roe v. Wade, limiting access to safe and legal abortion across the country, Mary sits down with three women who continue to advocate for the individuals most impacted: Marie Khan, Director of Programs at Midwest Access Coalition; Natalie Moore, WBEZ journalist and playwright of The Billboard: A Play About Abortion, and activist and co-founder of SisterSong Loretta Ross.
43 minutes | Jul 19, 2022
Episode 34: Tracie Hall and Angelique Power (Part 2)
Mary was thrilled to be joined once again by Tracie Hall and Angelique Power for another fireside chat — this time recorded on location in Detroit at the beautiful Motown Motivated Studios! Since missing last year's conversation, both of these powerhouses have continued to thrive in their work — Tracie as Executive Director of the American Library Association and Angelique as President and CEO of Skillman Foundation in Detroit. If you missed part one of this episode, you can find it at gatheringgroundpodcast.com or wherever you listen to podcasts. Please enjoy the conclusion of this phenomenal conversation between these equally phenomenal women. --- “Gathering Ground” will be taking a brief hiatus as we line up some exciting new guests for the fall. Thank you for tuning in for another season of “Gathering Ground.” We'll see you in September!
47 minutes | Jul 13, 2022
Episode 33: Tracie Hall and Angelique Power
Mary was thrilled to be joined once again by Tracie Hall and Angelique Power for another fireside chat — this time recorded on location in Detroit at the beautiful Motown Motivated Studios! Since missing last year's conversation, both of these powerhouses have continued to thrive in their work — Tracie as Executive Director of the American Library Association, and Angelique as President and CEO of Skillman Foundation in Detroit. As is often the case with Angelique and Tracie, our time together was so rich and meaningful that it couldn't fit into just one episode. Tune in on July 19 for part two of this amazing conversation!
60 minutes | Jun 7, 2022
Episode 32: Dr. Diana N. Derige
This time on “Gathering Ground,” Mary meets with Dr. Diana N. Derige, Vice President of Health Equity Strategy & Development at the American Medical Association’s Center for Health Equity, to discuss her role and the health disparities that are impacting Latinx and intersecting identities. Recently, alongside two of her colleagues, Diana edited and contributed to April's volume of the AMA Journal of Ethics titled Health Equity in US Latinx Communities. This issue of the Journal includes articles like "Should Clinicians be Activists?" "Latino Invisibility in the Pandemic," and "Language and Health (In)Equity in US Latinx Communities."
60 minutes | Apr 27, 2022
Episode 31: Michelle Saddler and Lisa Brown Alexander
It’s no secret that the last couple of years threw workplaces across industries into an unexpected spin as we began to find ways to take care of their teams amid social reckonings and a global pandemic. Despite these efforts, many employers have started seeing the effects of what many refer to as The Great Resignation. If you’ve ever partnered with us, you know that Morten Group does all of our work through an asset-based equity lens, so we encourage our client partners to flip the script and consider this an opportunity for a Great Retention. The time has come for us to ask, how can we foster organizational cultures that encourage our team members to feel they can succeed where they are? In this month’s episode of “Gathering Ground,” Mary talks to two leaders in the executive placement field to get their take on this trend and find out how their experience compares to what we’ve seen in our work at Morten Group. Don’t miss this great conversation with Kittleman’s Managing Director and Principal Michelle Saddler and NonprofitHR’s CEO Lisa Brown Alexander!
68 minutes | Mar 22, 2022
Episode 30: "Co-leadership: A New Division of Labor"
On this episode of “Gathering Ground,” Mary welcomes co-leaders from three different organizations to the podcast. They discuss the successes and pitfalls of co-leadership models, how their organizations took steps to break free from the single-leader hierarchy, and what they’ve learned from each other during their time as partners in their leadership. Read the episode transcript
52 minutes | Feb 28, 2022
Episode 29: Dr. Cathy J. Cohen
This time on “Gathering Ground,” Mary welcomes activist, advocate, internationally recognized academic, and dear friend Dr. Cathy J. Cohen. Mary and Cathy discuss Cathy’s Black Youth Project, how it informed Mary’s 2011 documentary Woke Up Black, and GenForward and More Than Diversity, two of Cathy’s most recent initiatives. Later, they share experiences of the pandemic’s forced shelter-in-place providing unexpected family bonding; Cathy’s recent Freedom Scholar award; and her extensive work in the realm of HIV and AIDS. You won’t want to miss this special episode! READ THE FULL EPISODE 29 TRANSCRIPT
45 minutes | Jan 25, 2022
Episode 28: Bridgit Antoinette Evans
This time on “Gathering Ground,” we were pleased to welcome Pop Culture Collaborative CEO Bridgit Antoinette Evans onto the podcast to discuss her work within and outside of the Collaborative. Mary and Bridgit talk about everything from the intersection of philanthropy and pop culture, Bridgit’s experience in Issa Rae’s writing room for “Insecure,” and Bridgit tells a fantastic story that exemplifies the importance of being able to tell your own story in the way that feels the most true to your experience. This won’t be the last time she’ll be on “Gathering Ground,” but make sure you catch this episode to meet Bridgit and get an inside look at the place where activism and popular culture meet — Pop Culture Collaborative!
52 minutes | Oct 26, 2021
Episode 27: Chicago Freedom School
As much as we wish things were different, young people engaged in organizing and advocacy work often need the support of accomplices to make sure they make it past the gatekeepers to the “adult” world — which is where this time’s “Gathering Ground” guests come in. Tony Alvarado-Rivera and Keisha Farmer-Smith work with Chicago Freedom School, a Chicago institution that creates new generations of critical thinkers who use their unique experiences and power to create a just world. The work of the Freedom School has spanned almost 15 years and has earned it the Mary F. Morten Award for Justice at Public Health Institute of Metropolitan Chicago’s BYOBrunch for Public Health. A little later in the episode, we also hear from Karen A. Reitan, President and CEO of PHIMC, about why CFS was chosen for this honor.
54 minutes | Sep 23, 2021
Episode 26: Equity in State Government
Earlier this year, Morten Group had the honor of working with Illinois Governor JB Pritzker’s office on a comprehensive racial equity training program that included collaborating with 40 state agencies on developing diversity, equity, and inclusion action plans. Through this process, we were able to take a deep dive into the inner workings of our state’s government and bring an equity lens to the very top — including having the pleasure of welcoming Governor Pritzker as he participated in one of our all-day sessions!This time on “Gathering Ground,” Mary sat down with three of the leaders whose offices are making sure that they continue their racial equity journey and ensure that their work is being carried out throughout the state: Dr. Carmen Ayala, Illinois State Board of Education Superintendent, Dr. Sekile Nzinga, newly appointed Chief Equity Officer for the State of Illinois, and Dr. Christina Smith, Illinois Department of Human Rights Training Institute Director. Each described how their offices were working to create a more equitable state for all Illinoisans, what they've learned so far during the pandemic, and how they are ensuring the work would not only continue, but thrive. READ THE FULL EPISODE 26 TRANSCRIPT
69 minutes | Jun 30, 2021
Episode 25: Sean Thomas-Breitfeld and Race to Lead: Revisited
This time on “Gathering Ground,” we’ve brought back Building Movement Project Co-director Sean Thomas-Breitfeld to discuss the organization’s 2020 report, Race to Lead Revisited: Obstacles and Opportunities in Addressing the Nonprofit Racial Leadership Gap. Mary and Sean discuss the experiences of people of color in nonprofit leadership, what the pandemic and reopening have been like, and what’s coming next from Race to Lead.
63 minutes | May 28, 2021
Episode 24: "Gathering Ground" Revisited: Arts in the Age of COVID-19
ake a look back at this special live episode from early April 2020, where we spoke to arts leaders from across the city to hear about what they anticipated for the arts during the pandemic. Guests included: Jessica Kadish-Hernandez, Morten Group consultant and co-founder of Chicago Artist Relief Fund; Michelle Boone, former Chief Program and Civic Engagement Officer at Navy Pier; Claire Rice, Executive Director of Arts Alliance Illinois; and Amy Eshleman, Chicago’s First Lady.
81 minutes | Apr 22, 2021
Episode 23: Angelique Power and Tracie Hall
This time, Angelique Power (President, The Field Foundation of Illinois) and Tracie Hall (Executive Director, American Library Association) return to “Gathering Ground” to talk about their takeaways from the last year, how the world is different and the same, and how we encourage ourselves to keep moving forward. (Here is the link to the Crain’s article referenced in the conversation.)
70 minutes | Mar 22, 2021
Episode 22: One Year Into COVID: Where Do We Go From Here?
This time on “Gathering Ground,” Mary sits down with some of Morten Group’s past and current client partners – Marie Kurose, CEO of Workforce Development of Seattle-King County; Ruth McFarlane, Vice President of Advancement at Ms. Foundation; and John Peller, President/CEO of AIDS Foundation Chicago. A year into the pandemic, the four begin their conversation with how COVID-19 has impacted their organizations and talking about their wins and challenges from the last year. They discuss how some communities are helping some of our most vulnerable populations, and, now that we are beginning to see a light at the end of the tunnel, what the future looks like for their offices and the sector at large.
68 minutes | Feb 11, 2021
Episode 21: READI or Not: The FIRE Grant
This episode of "Gathering Ground" is all about Morten Group and the Forging Innovation in Racial Equity (FIRE) Grant! We were thrilled to be joined by the staff of Morten Group client partner Erie Family Health Centers, as well as two members of our own team, to take a closer look at Morten Group's racial equity, access, diversity, and inclusion (READI) work and our exciting new FIRE Grant.
72 minutes | Dec 9, 2020
Episode 20: READI Symposium II
This week, you'll have the chance to listen in to December 1's live recording with READI session facilitators Lisa Gilmore, Jessica Kadish-Hernández, Anedra Kerr, Amanda Paul, and Geneva Porter. Mary and our experts spent some time responding to the questions we didn't get to answer during the Symposium (including a couple from our live audience).
121 minutes | Dec 2, 2020
Episode 19: READI Symposium
This week on “Gathering Ground,” Mary is offering listeners an inside look into Morten Group, LLC's READI Symposium — that's racial equity, access, diversity, and inclusion — which was held virtually on November 10. Following morning sessions on READI action planning, Mary welcomed a cross-sector slate of panelists to discuss the importance of READI efforts at participants' organizations, foundations, and companies. Hear from past “Gathering Ground” guests Sean Thomas-Breitfeld and Pamela Newkirk, who are later joined by Michelle Morales, Rahnee Patrick, and Audra Wilson for a conversation you won't want to miss!
75 minutes | Sep 17, 2020
Episode 18: Chicago Foundation for Women
Thirty-five years ago, organizations that were geared toward women and girls were only receiving 3 percent of all philanthropic dollars — which meant that programs addressing domestic violence, reproductive health, economic equality, and other issues critical to the well-being of women and girls were often underfunded. Four women in 1984 set out to change that when they founded Chicago Foundation for Women (CFW). Mary was thrilled to help celebrate an organization that she has supported for many years, and is very proud to have been the first Black person and first out lesbian to serve as chairperson of the CFW Board. She brought together people like Felicia Davis (current CFW CEO); Sunny Fischer and Iris Krieg (two of CFW's founders); and just a few of the many people who have been touched by CFW over the past 35 years. Subscribe today and listen in on this amazing conversation!
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