Center for Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation
The Center for Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation (TRHT) at OSU-Tulsa is part of a nationwide, community-based initiative by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to "plan for and bring about transformational and sustainable change, and to address the historic and contemporary effects of racism."
Each TRHT center focuses on topics of racial equity specific to their location. Because of the deep history on and around the OSU-Tulsa campus – from the meeting of Creek, Cherokee and Osage Nation land to Black Wall Street and the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre – the work at OSU-Tulsa's Center for TRHT involves engaging community stakeholders to create programming and initiatives that benefit the north Tulsa community as well as the OSU-Tulsa campus community.
An additional initiative of the center is to investigate how diversity and inclusion manifest in every aspect of campus life, including curriculum and university governance. The Center for Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation will work closely with other entities at OSU-Tulsa such as the Center for Public Life and student organizations to help students, faculty, staff and community to feel welcome and included, and to know that there is a space for all ideas.
Racial Healing Circles
Based on a framework developed by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, racial healing circle sessions consist of conversations between participants to discuss experiences with race and conscious and unconscious biases. Trained racial healing circle practitioners ensure these sessions are safe spaces that promote compassion, empathy and truthful conversations.
Racial healing circles provide opportunities to reflect and acknowledge the participants' unquestioned assumptions and biases in a way that is non-threatening and encouraging. Participants may share personal experiences in a way that promotes empathy and understanding. Participants also have the opportunity to confront the historic and contemporary causes and effects of systemic racism while being empowered to promote equity and social justice.
The Center for Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation offers trained facilitators for racial healing circles. For more information, contact Quraysh Ali Lansana, acting director.
Quraysh Ali Lansana
Director, Center for Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation at OSU-Tulsa
Writer-in-Residence, Center for Poets and Writers at OSU-Tulsa
Lecturer, Africana Studies and English
Quraysh Ali 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 and Transformation at Oklahoma State University-Tulsa, where he is also writer-in-residence for the Center for Poets and 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 and 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 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.