Living While Black: A University-Wide Event

Duke Living While Black logo.

On June 16, 2020, we held an online event with a distinguished group of speakers from our Black community at Duke. Faculty scholars discussed the background, dimensions and impact of racism and racist policies and structures. Students and staff shared their perspectives and insights. We also discussed actionable steps to move forward. This was a first step to fully engage all members of our community to consider new ways to advance Duke’s goals toward achieving racial justice and equity. Access videos from the four sessions below.

Sponsored by the Office for Institutional Equity and the Office for Faculty Advancement

Duke Community Experiences: Share Your Story

If you are a member of the Black community at Duke and would like to share a story about your experiences on campus, please visit this link. Your narratives will be shared with senior leadership to inform further actions related to inclusion and equity at Duke for all students, faculty and staff. All submissions are fully anonymous.


Duke students, please contact Counseling & Psychological Services (CAPS). Duke faculty and staff, please contact Personal Assistance Service (PAS).


To access a list of resources for the Duke community on topics including self-care for BIPOC, academic leadership, history, literature and parenting, please visit this link.


Session 1: How Did We Get Here? (Watch the Video)

9:00 a.m. – 10:10 a.m.

Kimberly Hewitt, Vice President for Institutional Equity
Del Wigfall, Professor of Pediatrics
Vincent E. Price, President
Adriane Lentz-Smith, Associate Professor of History
Jay Pearson, Assistant Professor in the Sanford School of Public Policy

Session 2: Being Black in America (Watch the Video)

10:10 a.m. – 12:25 p.m.

Tyson Brown, Associate Professor of Sociology
Patrick Smith, Associate Research Professor of Theological Ethics & Bioethics
Gwenaëlle Thomas, Ph.D. Student in Neurobiology
David Moore, Undergraduate Student
De’Ja Wood, Undergraduate Student
Parker Martin, MPP ’20
Eduardo Bonilla-Silva, James B. Duke Distinguished Professor of Sociology
Guy-Uriel Charles, Edward and Ellen Marie Schwarzman Professor of Law
Ebony Boulware, Eleanor Easley Chair in the School of Medicine
Mark Anthony Neal, James B. Duke Distinguished Professor of African & African American Studies
William Darity, Jr., Samuel DuBois Cook Distinguished Professor of Public Policy
Joseph Winters, Alexander F. Hehmeyer Associate Professor of Religious Studies and African & African American Studies
Patrice Douglass, Assistant Professor of Gender, Sexuality & Feminist Studies


12:25 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.


Session 3: Being Black at Duke (Watch the Video)

1:00 p.m. – 2:20 p.m.

Narratives from Students and Staff

Gary Bennett, Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education
Chandra Guinn, Director of the Mary Lou Williams Center for Black Culture
Quinton Smith, Assistant Director of the Mary Lou Williams Center for Black Culture
Bibi Gnagno, Director of Academic Engagement, Academic Advising Center
Martin Smith, Assistant Professor of the Practice of Education
Jamal Burns, Undergraduate Student
Kirk Wilson, MBA Student
Tyler Johnson, Undergraduate Student
Ashleigh Rosette, Associate Professor of Business Administration
Charmaine Royal, Associate Professor of African & African American Studies
Valerie Ashby, Dean of Trinity College of Arts & Sciences
Stelfanie Williams, Vice President for Durham Affairs
Felicia Tittle, Executive Director of Recreation & Physical Education
Paula D. McClain, Dean of the Graduate School

Session 4: How Do We Move Forward? (Watch the Video)

2:20p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Sherilynn Black, Associate Vice Provost for Faculty Advancement
Trina Jones, Jerome M. Culp Distinguished Professor of Law
Sally Kornbluth, Provost
Sherilynn Black, Associate Vice Provost for Faculty Advancement
Abbas Benmamoun, Vice Provost for Faculty Advancement


Please email with any questions.

If you would like to report a complaint or concern, please contact the Office for Institutional Equity.