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Immigrant Faith Communities as Anti-Racist Allies

In the US, the pervasiveness of anti-Black racism and the persistence of white supremacy touch every aspect of American life, including our religious and spiritual communities. With Kamala Harris’s candidacy, many started opening up public conversations about racism, and specifically anti-Black racism, within immigrant religious communities. Concurrently, anti-racist work is growing from and within immigrant faith communities. On March 11th, 2021, religiously diverse leaders gathered to discuss the anti-racist work that is needed and happening among faith communities.

Janett I. Cordoves is Director of Higher Ed Partnerships at IFYC. Janett holds an EdD in Ethical Leadership, an MS in Higher Education, and a BA in Applied Mathematics. Her research interests include first-generation college students, #digitalfaith​, leadership development, and online pedagogy. Janett is part of the 2021 Civic Leadership Academy.

Rev. Alexis Vaughan Kassim is the pastor of Little River United Church of Christ and an IFYC alumna

Raja Gopal Bhattar (they/them/theirs) hails from a long lineage of Hindu spiritual leaders from the Srivaishnava tradition. They hold a PhD and Masters in Higher Education and Organizational Change from UCLA, a Masters in Higher Education and Student Affairs Administration from the University of Vermont, and a BA in Psychology from Boston University.

Sung Yeon Choimorrow is a first-generation immigrant working mom who is passionate about building power to create change so her daughter can live in a more just world than the one she inherited. She is Executive Director of the National Asian American Women’s Forum.

Imam Khalid Latif is the University Chaplain for New York University and Executive Director of the Islamic Center at NYU. His work has brought him to share stages with the likes of Pope Francis and the Dalai Lama, and many grassroot movements and diverse communities throughout the world.