This episode focuses on Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion, EDI for short and features three guest who've been working tirelessly in this arena. Amita Lonial leads our conversation. Amita, (she/her/hers) is currently the Principal Librarian for Learning, Marketing, and Engagement at San Diego County Library. She also currently serves as the co-chair for the PLA Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Task Force. Racial and social justice is something she have always been passionate about. Prior to becoming a librarian she spent 8 years in the non-profit sector working with organizations engaged in direct action organizing and policy reform. Working in public libraries has deepened her commitment to doing liberation based work in our communities and with library staff.
Katie Dover-Taylor is a Reference Librarian at the William P. Faust Public Library in Westland, Michigan, where she focuses on library technology and digital literacy training. Katie has developed her understanding of power and oppression in public libraries through both community organizing and scholarship. In 2015 and 2016, Katie co-coordinated the Radical Librarianship Track at the Allied Media Conference, bringing the first official gathering of library-centric content to an annual conference which draws a diverse spectrum of creative and technology-savvy people engaged in social justice work. In 2017, Katie co-authored the chapter "Disrupting Whiteness: Three Perspectives on White Anti-Racist Librarianship" for
Topographies of Whiteness: Mapping Whiteness in Library and Information Science. She is currently a member of PLA's Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Task Force.
Mia Henry (she/her/hers) is the Executive Director of the Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership. Mia joined the team in 2014 with over 18 years of experience in nonprofit management, training facilitation, intergenerational community organizing, and civic and history education. Mia was the founding director of the Chicago Freedom School (CFS), a nonprofit organization that supports youth-led social change and youth-adult partnerships in community organizing. Since her work with CFS, Mia has been a consultant nationally with Safe Places for the Advancement of Community and Equity (SPACEs), and in Chicago with the Chicago History Museum, Chicago Public Schools, the University of Chicago Hospital, and the University of Chicago Oriental Institute.
Mia is the owner and operator of Freedom Lifted, a small business dedicated to providing civil rights tours. She is also the founder of Reclaiming South Shore for All, a diverse, grassroots group of residents committed to mobilizing the South Shore (Chicago) community and institutionalizing systems that promote peace, youth leadership, and political accountability. She has been a visiting lecturer at the University of Illinois at Chicago and Harold Washington College, as well as a high school history teacher and International Baccalaureate (IB) program coordinator for Chicago Public Schools. Mia is deeply passionate about social movement history, positive youth development, and civic engagement through an anti-oppression lens. She serves on the Boards of Directors for the Mikva Challenge and the Community Justice for Youth Institute. Mia earned her B.S. from Rutgers University and her M.S.Ed. from the University of Pennsylvania.