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Excerpts We Should Read, Talk About and Act On
Excerpts We Should Read, Talk About and Act On:
Important Passages to Guide Us to Stand UP with Our Neighbors

Join us for Zoom conversations based on book excerpts from social justice literature that can impact how we live in community. No need to read the books before hand; we will share excerpts that lead to discussion and understanding.

Each of our conversations will be strengthened by participation of the four local leaders who recommended one of the books. They are dedicated to helping neighbors live with each other based on our shared humanity across real and perceived differences.

Register HERE

Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents, Isabella Wilkerson

Recommended by Lisa Schroeder, President and CEO, The Pittsburgh Foundation

Thursday, December 15 – 7–8 PM

Isabel Wilkerson gives us a masterful portrait of an unseen phenomenon in America today and throughout its history which has been shaped by a hidden caste system. Beyond race, class, or other factors, there is a powerful caste system that influences people’s lives. She writes about the surprising health costs of caste, in depression and life expectancy, and the effects of this hierarchy on our culture and politics.


The Last Time I Wore A Dress, by Dylan (Daphne) Scholinski

Recommended by Lynz Sickler, Executive Director, Proud Haven

Tuesday, January 10 – 7-8 PM





Dylan (Daphne) Scholinski, a trans advocate, educator, author and artist based in Denver, CO, at fifteen years old, was committed to a mental institution and awarded the dubious diagnosis of “Gender Identity Disorder.” She spent three years “treating” the problem…with makeup lessons and instructions in how to walk like a girl.

“As an artist, and as someone who works with at-risk youth, I want to encourage people to embrace their creative self. I think it’s important to realize that at no point is someone a liar if their truth about themselves evolves. The reality is that finding our truth is a process, and so if someone’s identity changes, if that’s their truth, I think that’s okay.”


Read the full interview with the author HERE

Killing the Black Body: Race, Reproduction, and the Meaning of Liberty, Dorothy Roberts.

Recommended by Sydney Etheredge, President and CEO, Planned Parenthood of Western PA

Tuesday, February 7 – 7-8 PM

In 1997, this groundbreaking book made a powerful entrance into the national conversation on race. Killing the Black Body exposed America’s systemic abuse of Black women’s bodies.





The Next Conversation:

Under the Skin: The Hidden Toll of Racism on American Lives and on the Health of Our Nation, Linda Villarosa

Recommended by Anna Hollis, President and CEO, Amachi Pittsburgh

Thursday, March 16 – 7-8 PM

In Under the Skin, Linda Villarosa lays bare forces in the American health-care system and in American society that cause Black people to “live sicker and die quicker” compared to their white counterparts.. Anchored by unforgettable human stories and offering incontrovertible proof, Under the Skin is dramatic, tragic, and necessary reading.

Books recommended by

Sydney Etheredge, President and CEO, Planned Parenthood of Western Pennsylvania Etheredge is focused on improving the sexual and reproductive health care landscape for people in this country. She is deeply committed to fighting for health equity and the elimination of health disparities in the United States.



Anna Hollis, President and CEO, Amachi Pittsburgh Amachi Pittsburgh is a local nonprofit working with children who have an incarcerated parent. Hollis has extensive knowledge of local and state criminal justice issues, especially as they pertain to families. She has vast experience managing mid-sized nonprofits, fundraising, lobbying and serving as a consultant and public speaker.


Lisa Schroeder, President and CEO, The Pittsburgh Foundation Schroeder was appointed in February of 2019 and took the helm in June of that year to lead the Foundation, which was established in 1945. As the leader of one of the oldest and largest of the country’s 750 community foundations, she is only the sixth president and first woman in the position.


Lynz Sickler, Executive Director, Proud Haven Sickler is a community advocate with over 25 years of experience working directly with LGBTQIA+ youth, young adults, and those experiencing crisis, and serves on multiple nonprofit and community-based boards to support the greater LGBTQIA+ community.

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