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OSU in Tulsa Virtual Spring 2021 Staff Conference

Understand the Past, Build a Better Future
Virtual Staff Conference

Thursday, April 15 & Friday, April 23

As the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre Centennial approaches, it is important we identify and understand how the past events affected society. Understanding the past is one of the key steps toward restoration and reconciliation within our community and workplace. Join us for the 2021 Spring Virtual Staff Conference to learn ways we can work collaboratively to embrace diversity and move forward to build a better future!

The Spring 2021 Staff Conference will be offered virtually via Zoom on two separate dates, April 15 from 8 a.m.-12 p.m. and April 23 from 1-5 p.m. to accommodate employee schedules. Participants will only need to attend one date, as the information is the same.

  • All attendees will need to attend all three sessions and upload their Action Plans in order to complete all requirements for the conference. 
  • Sessions are live and virtual. Participants will be emailed a Zoom invite at least three days prior to the event.

Register online

To register in LMS, go to the Events Calendar under the Learning tab in April and select the classes OR search “Build a Better Future” in the search bar from the LMS homepage.

You can view step-by-step enrollment instructions here.


Thursday, April 15
8 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Online via Zoom

   Thursday, April 15

 8 - 8:10 a.m.

 Welcome & Introduction

 8:10 - 9 a.m.

 Keynote: Tulsa Race Massacre and Black Wall Street
 by Professor Quraysh Ali Lansana

 9 - 9:15 a.m.


 9:15 - 10 a.m.

 Session I: Restoring Racial Justice
 by Professor Quraysh Ali Lansana

 10 - 10:30 a.m.  Break
 10:30 - 11:15 a.m.

 Session II: Addressing Microagressions
 by Dondi Scumaci

 11:15 - 11:30 a.m.  Action Plan & Wrap Up


Friday, April 23
1 - 5 p.m.
Online via Zoom

   Friday, April 23

 1 - 1:10 p.m.

 Welcome & Introduction

 1:10 - 2 p.m.

 Keynote: Tulsa Race Massacre and Black Wall Street
 by Professor Quraysh Ali Lansana

 2 - 2:15 p.m.


 2:15 - 3 p.m.

 Session I: Restoring Racial Justice
 by Professor Quraysh Ali Lansana

 3 - 3:30 p.m.  Break
 3:30 - 4:15 p.m.

 Session II: Addressing Microaggressions
 by Dondi Scumaci

 4:15 - 4:30 p.m.

 Action Plan & Wrap Up

Conference Info

Keynote: Tulsa Race Massacre and Black Wall Street by Professor Quraysh Ali Lansana

The Tulsa Race Massacre and Black Wall Street keynote examines the history and evolution of Tulsa’s Greenwood District, coined “Black Wall Street” by educator and historian Booker T. Washington. “Black Wall Street” was the most economically vibrant Black community in the United States for years, and preceded Harlem, New York in that status. There were many significant factors that contributed to both its rise and destruction.

Session 1: Restoring Racial Justice by Professor Quraysh Ai Lansana

Tulsa is a community built on hard work, natural resources, and human ingenuity. It has a past and present that, at the same time, reflect the best of humanity and the worst. Culminating in the 1921 Race Massacre, Tulsa allowed hate and fear to take root in our community forever affecting our citizens. OSU-Tulsa is seated in the geographic heart of this infamous history and with our Greenwood neighbors, we seek to understand, share, and become better neighbors. We seek through the hard work of truth-telling and neighborhood engagement to permanently change our neighborhood and broader community to be more inclusive and to acquire the willingness to always look for more and better ways to pursue this value.

Session 2: Addressing Microaggressions by Dondi Scumaci

Micro-aggressions are more than just verbal comments. It is important to identify and address behaviors and environmental aggressions, such as a lack of diversity. During this session, participants will learn to identify microaggressions, examine the negative impact microaggressions have on others, determine how to assess and reformulate messages so they do not come across to others as microaggressions, and learn how respond to when you encounter or observe a microaggression.


About the Workshop Leaders

Quraysh Ali Lansana

Lansana is author of twenty books in poetry, nonfiction and children’s literature. Lansana is currently a Tulsa Artist Fellow and serves as Acting Director of the Center for Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation at Oklahoma State University-Tulsa, where he is also Writer in Residence for the Center for Poets & Writers and Adjunct Professor in Africana Studies and English. Lansana is Creator and Executive Producer of KOSU/NPR’s Focus: Black Oklahoma monthly radio program. A former faculty member of both the Writing Program of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the Drama Division of The Juilliard School, Lansana served as Director of the Gwendolyn Brooks Center for Black Literature and Creative Writing at Chicago State University from 2002-2012 and was Associate Professor of English/Creative Writing there until 2014.

His work Our Difficult Sunlight: A Guide to Poetry, Literacy & Social Justice in Classroom & Community was published in March 2011 by the Teachers & Writers Collaborative and was a 2012 NAACP Image Award nominee. His most recent books include the skin of dreams: new and collected poems, 1995-2018, The Whiskey of Our Discontent: Gwendolyn Brooks as Conscience & Change Agent (Haymarket Books, 2017) and The BreakBeat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip Hop (Haymarket Books, 2015). Lansana’s work appears in Best American Poetry 2019, and his forthcoming titles include Those Who Stayed: Life in 1921 Tulsa After the Massacre and Opal’s Greenwood Oasis. He is a founding member of Tri-City Collective.

Dondi Scumaci

Scumaci is an International Performance Consultant and author- an expert in leadership development, professional development, performance management and world class service. Over the past nine years, Dondi has helped thousands of UPS workers around the world create mentoring communities and peer-to-peer partnerships. Dondi has experience partnering with organizations in various industries to meet learning and development needs.


Download and fill out the Action Plan forms and upload to LMS at by 5 p.m. on Monday, May 3, 2021 to receive credit for your participation in the conference. Upload Instructions are included in the download link.

Download and fill out the Virtual Staff Conference Evaluation Form and email your completed evaluation to


If you have questions or need additional assistance, contact the Human Resources Department at OSU in Tulsa at or 918-594-8221.