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February 2024 Meeting: How to Authentically Approach Diversity

  • February 2024 Meeting: How to Authentically Approach Diversity
     February 21, 2024
     11:30 am - 1:00 pm
     Redstone Federal Credit Union

    An insightful panel discussion centered around approaching diversity authentically with panel members Christopher Smith, U'Meeka Smith, and Katie Toro. 


Join us on February 21 @ 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. for an insightful panel discussion centered around approaching diversity authentically.

Meet your panel members:

Christopher Smith is the Senior Program Coordinator for Diversity Initiatives in the Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at The University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH). In this role, he works closely with university faculty and staff to build their understanding of diversity, equity, and inclusion. These efforts include workshops, consultations, events, recruiting, and institutional initiatives. A native of St. Louis, Mo., he came to Huntsville to attend Alabama A&M University (AAMU). From AAMU, he earned a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science. He has also earned a Master of Science in Human Resource Management from UAH. Christopher currently serves as Chairperson for the City of Huntsville’s Human Relations Commission.

U’Meeka Smith currently serves as the Assistant Director of the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for the City of Huntsville, supporting leadership in making Huntsville a more inclusive city. Her professional career reflects over 21 years of combined organizational and financial management, including developing strategies around diversity, equity, & inclusion, entrepreneurship, human capital, and more than ten years leading and managing teams. U’Meeka has a passion for inclusion and inspiring others to achieve their personal and professional goals. She has a strong belief in giving back to the community, believing a mix of passion, principles, and grace can affect the type of difference someone makes in another person’s life. U’Meeka supports many civic and community organizations, including serving on the boards of Athens State Foundation Board, The Catalyst Center, Historic Huntsville Foundation, and Real Fathers Making a Difference, Inc. U’Meeka and her husband of 22 years, LC, have three children, a daughter-in-law, and one grandbaby. U’Meeka enjoys spending time with family and friends, walking, reading, and relaxing in her free time.

Katie Toro is a Peer Advocate with Disability Resource Network, a Center for Independent Living in North Alabama. DRN (Disability Resource Network) services thirteen counties in North Alabama and has an office in Huntsville, AL. Katie is passionate about supporting individuals’ abilities and goals in life. Katie loves to learn and educate her community on disability rights. She served as a student representative for ADA at Athens State University and Calhoun Community College, Vice President, and Public Relations for People First of Huntsville, and continues to serve on the Alabama ARISE, FAND Taskforce, NCIL (National Council on Independent Living), APRIL (Association of Programs for Rural Independent Living), Sweet Trails Alabama, Legislative Advocacy Committee, USDOT (United States Department of Transportation), Disability Rights Coalition, and VR GOOD Huntsville/Decatur Advisory Council to impact her community by being a voice for removing stigmas and barriers for people with disabilities. Being an ambassador is essential; we must expose ourselves to the diversity of individuals we may encounter. As we discuss, the importance of seeing the individual first and accepting, respecting, and valuing our differences and similarities is vital. Katie uses a think-outside-the-box approach that is effective when working with consumers and the community.

Venue:  

Venue Phone: 800-234-1234

Venue Website:

Address:
220 Wynn Dr NW, Huntsville, Alabama, 35893

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