RWA2019 Special Session

RWA Listens: Continuing the Conversation Around Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

RWA hosted a Diversity Summit the last two years during our national conference. The purpose was to encourage a conversation between industry professionals and RWA members in leadership roles about specific issues impacting underrepresented communities. We will continue to work with industry professionals to address issues of concern for members of these communities and to come up with a list of action items for further work and review. In order to ensure all voices are heard, we are taking a new approach to these discussions for 2019.
On the Wednesday of conference, July 24, from 4 to 6 p.m., the RWA Board will host a session called RWA Listens: Continuing the Conversation Around Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI). The program will be open to members attending  the conference. It is an opportunity for the audience to express concerns, ask questions, and make suggestions on DEI issues.
This session starts with the acknowledgement that there are DEI issues in RWA. While the RWA Board is diverse, marginalized groups are not monolithic and every member of these groups has a right to be heard on these issues. The RWA Board will listen and we invite those who join us to do the same to further genuine understanding of these important issues and hopefully open the way for further dialogue.
In an effort to include as many members as possible, we are inviting members to use this address – – to email us with issues and concerns you would like to see covered during the session. We can’t promise to get to every question but we will make an attempt to do so.
Other workshops will take place during this conference session, so we understand that attendees may need to move in and out of the session. To accommodate this, the session will be taped, transcribed and available for members after the conference. We will also issue a report to the membership on the session and open a moderated forum on the RWA website specifically for further discussion following conference.
We know that one session at one conference will not resolve all of the DEI issues within RWA and answer every question. We are hopeful that this will start an ongoing conversation and help inform future RWA Boards as they develop programs, write policy, and set up a new Diversity Advisory Committee that will best serve all of our members.
If you have any questions about the session, please contact me at
HelenKay Dimon
RWA President, on behalf of the RWA Board
HelenKay Dimon