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Unconventional Conversation on Race – Nwandi Lawson & Judith McCray

January 21, 2021, in Videos > Talk, by

In this video presented by The Wilmette Institute at the Grand Canyon Baha’i Conference 2020 (held online), Ms. Nwandi Lawson and Ms. Judith McCray facilitate an ‘Unconventional Conversation on Race’.

Ms. Nwandi Lawson has several decades of experience hosting, writing and producing for commercial and public broadcasters, including CNN, TBS, WPBA, and GPB, as well as for corporate and non-profit clients through her production and media consulting companies, Rêve Productions and The Virtues Collective. A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, Nwandi earned an MBA from Emory University and an undergraduate degree in journalism from Howard University. She was elected to serve two terms on the Board of Governors for the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (NATAS) and served as the Southeast regional Emmy Awards judging chair. Business and Professional Women named her Georgia Woman of Achievement, and she received a Southern Regional Emmy for production of the Georgia Music Hall of Fame Awards. After meeting members of the Bahá’i Faith for the first time in the West African nation of Cameroon in 1999, Nwandi became a Bahá’I in 2001. Since that time, she has served as a children’s class teacher, ATC secretary, on Local Spiritual Assemblies, and as an Auxiliary Board member and Continental Counsellor. Her current productions and media consulting work highlight the ways that diversity, equity and inclusion can be advanced towards true racial unity.

Ms. Judith McCray is a Chicago-based media producer and multiple Emmy award-winning journalist with thirty years experience in broadcast production and programming. She has developed and produced award-winning programming examining issues of social justice and racial inequities, civil and human rights, science and the environment, history, and education. Her documentary films, public affairs programs, educational and advocacy videos, and podcasts have served as vehicles for the voices and experiences of those underrepresented in mainstream media coverage. Additionally, she is a producer for the Baha’i Media Services U.S. for A Rich Tapestry, a video storytelling series that expresses and illustrates how love is being translated into action to address questions of race and culture in the U.S. A former producer and program developer for WTTW (PBS/Chicago) and WNET (PBS/New York), McCray is president and founder of Juneteenth Productions, a media organization specializing in creating content that addresses social injustices and issues affecting underserved and underrepresented communities of color and other marginalized communities. Juneteenth Productions has a twenty plus year history reaching communities in the Chicago region, as well as nationally, via broadcast, educational and internet media channels. McCray’s broadcast experience extends into the classroom and mentoring future broadcast journalists and media professionals. She taught documentary production and writing as an assistant professor at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, and as an adjunct at Roosevelt University and the University of Illinois-Chicago. She currently is an adjunct professor in DePaul University’s College of Communication. She holds a M.A. in politics and public policy from Rutgers University’s Eagleton Institute of Politics, and a B.S. in journalism from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism.

This presentation was given at the 2020 Grand Canyon Baha’i Conference (held online), on Saturday 26 December 2020.

Check out the Grand Canyon Baha’i Conference website here: grandcanyonbahai.org

Watch and listen to more talks from the Grand Canyon Baha’i Conference using this Grand Canyon Baha’i Conference playlist.

For more Baha’i-inspired talks and interviews, go to Baha’i Blog’s Baha’i Talks & Interviews playlist.

Posted by

Naysan Naraqi

Naysan is passionate about using the arts and media to explore the teachings of the Baha’i Faith. Back in 2011, Naysan started up the Baha’i Blog project, channeling his experiences in both media and technology companies to help create a hub for Baha’i-inspired content online.

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