New Detroit Announces Dr. Ibram X. Kendi as Conference Keynote Speaker

New Detroit, the Detroit racial equity organization, announces that Dr. Ibram X. Kendi, professor, acclaimed historian, and the author of the New York Times bestseller How to Be an Antiracist, will be the keynote speaker for the Just Lead: Advancing Racial Equity conference on October 13-14, 2022, at the Detroit Marriott. Also speaking at the conference is keynote plenary speaker, Dr. Abdul El-Sayed, physician, epidemiologist, educator, author, and CNN commentator.


Last month, New Detroit announced Just Lead: Advancing Racial Equity, a two-day hybrid conference that will provide leaders with up-to-date information on key issues related to racial equity and equip them with motivation, tools, and support to advance racial equity individually and collectively. National and local speakers will offer participants at different levels of knowledge and experiences compelling perspectives on racial equity and racial justice. This will be a collaborative space to address the critical issues of right now with the goal of sprouting a collective regional vision for racial equity.


About the conference

  • Conference Day One: Speakers and panelists will present topics about the intersection of race with economics, health, education, and leadership, including corporate social responsibility
  • Conference Day Two: Interactive workshops on racial healing, allyship, and co-liberation, and New Detroit’s Just Lead leadership program


Speakers include

  • Anika Goss, President, and CEO of Detroit Future City
  • Peter Hammer, Director of the Damon J. Keith Center for Civil Rights; Professor of Law; A. Alfred Taubman Endowed Chair, Wayne State University
  • Ani Turner, Program Director of Health Economics and Policy of Altarum
  • Michelle Story-Stewart, Principal of MSS Consulting LLC
  • Denise Brooks-Williams, Senior Vice President and CEO of North Market of Henry Ford Health System
  • Andrew Stein, Senior Vice President and Executive Director of City Year Detroit
  • Alice Thompson, CEO of Black Family Development
  • Roy Wilson, President of Wayne State University
  • Charity Dean, President, and CEO of Metro Detroit Black Business Alliance
  • Dwan Dandridge, CEO of Black Leaders Detroit
  • Jackie Victor, founder, and CEO of Avalon International Breads
  • Anand Kumar, Director of Supplier Diversity of AAA
  • Chase Cantrell, Executive Director of Building Community Value


Several additional speakers will soon be confirmed as well.


Registration is open now with discounted early registration until August 31. New Detroit is dedicated to providing opportunities to this conference on a sliding scale. Register for the in-person and virtual tickets at


New Detroit’s vision is to dismantle racism in the Metro Detroit region by moving hearts and minds and changing policies and systems. They do this through collective action as a thought leader and advocate for policy change. New Detroit’s work is organized around these three strategies, and includes education, trainings, services, research, and programs to fight racism at the personal, institutional, and systemic levels.


Just Lead: Advancing Racial Equity is a signature event of New Detroit’s recently launched Just Institute. New Detroit’s Just Institute offers trainings and services to advance racial equity industry by industry.


“New Detroit’s Just Institute is creating solutions for people and organizations who want to deepen their skills to advance racial equity and address systemic racism in healthcare with Just Care, racism in hospitality with Just Place, and Just Lead, a program for leaders across all industries and sectors,” said Rebecca Irby, director of programs & services.


New Detroit has trained more than 20,000 people in its 55-year history. For more information about Just Lead: A New Detroit Conference on Racial Equity or the Just Institute, go to

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