New Webinar: Walking Towards Justice Ep #3 “Stop Street Harassment: Making Public Places Safe and Welcoming for Women, LGBTQ-inclusive and Cisgender Individuals”

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Webinar Title: Stop Street Harassment: Making Public Places Safe and Welcoming for Women, LGBTQ-inclusive and Cisgender Individuals

Webinar Featured Text: Stop Street Harassment: Making Public Places Safe and Welcoming for Women by Holly Kearl

Webinar Date: April 4, 2018 at 2pm Eastern/11 am Pacific

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About the Webinar

Too often discussions in walking and walkability happen without the benefit of historical facts, community precedents and cultural awareness. This unfortunately results in a lack of knowledge and understanding in the systematic and socially-constructed creation of past and present inequalities in neighborhood walkability—particularly in low-income and communities of colors.

To provide an open platform for discussion and aid in identifying potential solutions to improve walkability for ALL, America Walks has launched a new social equity-inspired online discussion series titled: Walking Towards Justice. Walking Towards Justice is a webinar series that integrates literature into a discussion regarding the intersection of mobility, race, class, gender, and politics. The quarterly webinar will include an interactive panel of leading scholars, activists, practitioners, America Walks Board members, and policymakers, who will discuss and explore connections between walking and other key topics such as social equity, residential segregation, gentrification, police brutality, and etc. Participants will also be able to engage and ask questions of panelists via chat during the live webinar.

Each discussion will be facilitated by Charles T. Brown, MPA, an America Walks’ board member who created this series in partnership with America Walks.

Using the text Stop Street Harassment: Making Public Places Safe and Welcoming for Women by Holly Kearl, who will join in the discussion, as a framework for our third conversation, our panel will discuss some of the barriers, and opportunities facing women, LGBTQ-inclusive and cisgender individuals to engage safely and enjoyably with public spaces. This conversation will discuss the experiences of women, LGBTQ-inclusive and cisgender individuals, and examine some changes that can be made to create safe, accessible, and enjoyable places to walk.

About the Author
 Holly Kearl, author of Stop Street Harassment: Making Public Places Safe and Welcoming for Women Holly Kearl is the founder of Stop Street Harassment, author of three books on street harassment and three national studies on sexual harassment. She’s done consulting work on these topics for UN Women, US State Dept., Lyft, Runner’s World and various local government bodies. For her day job, she works as a community manager for the Aspen Institute. Holly will join the panel for the discussion._____________________________________________________
Guest Co-Host

Veronica O. Davis, PE is a transportation nerd who uses her knowledge to spark progressive social change in the community. Currently, she is a co-owner and Principal Planning Manager at Nspiregreen LLC. In July 2012, the White House recognized her as a Champion of Change and Transportation Innovator for her professional accomplishments and community advocacy in the District of Columbia. Veronica is one of the co-founders of Black Women Bike (BWB), an organization and movement that encourages African American women to use biking for health and wellness as well as an alternative form of transportation for commuting. She holds a dual Masters Degrees (Engineering Management and Regional Planning) from Cornell University and a B.S in civil engineering from the University of Maryland. She is a registered professional engineer in the District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina and Georgia.

About the Panel

Charles Brown is a senior researcher with the Alan M. Voorhees Transportation Center (VTC) and adjunct professor at the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, both at Rutgers University. He has 15 years of public and private sector experience in transportation planning, policy, and research. He is considered a national thought leader and a leading voice in encouraging social justice in active transportation. He is often invited to give lectures, presentations, and keynote addresses at many notable colleges/universities and conferences across the nation as well as internationally. His work has been published in several international journals as well as featured by or quoted in the New York Times, Streetsblog, CityLab and various other national and local media outlets. He is a member of the Transportation Research Board (TRB) Pedestrian Safety Committee, Board Trustee with America Walks and the Urban League of Essex County (NJ), and serves on the Franklin Township (NJ) Planning Board. He is also a proud member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Incorporated.

Vanessa Garrison speaks at TED2017 – The Future You, April 24-28, 2017, Vancouver, BC, Canada. Photo: Bret Hartman / TED

Vanessa Garrison is the co-founder and COO of GirlTrek, the largest public health nonprofit for African-American women and girls in the United States.  With more than 100,000 neighborhood walkers, GirlTrek encourages women to use walking as a practical first step to inspire healthy living, families, and communities.  As women organize walking teams, they mobilize community members to support monthly advocacy efforts and lead a civil rights-inspired health movement.  Beyond walking, GirlTrek’s active members support local and national policy to increase physical activity through walking, improve access to safe places to walk, protect and reclaim green spaces, and improve the walkability and built environments of 50 high-need communities across the United States.  With Partnership for a Healthier America, The Centers for Disease Control, Stanford Prevention Research Center, The American Council on Exercise, Safe Routes to School National Partnership, and The Sierra Club, GirlTrek has developed a world-class training for African-American women to serve as health professionals in the areas of fitness, mental health, nutrition, and environmental stewardship.  GirlTrek’s mission is to inspire one million African-American women and girls to develop a daily habit of walking.

Prior to co-founding GirlTrek, Garrison worked within the criminal justice space, helping formerly incarcerated women access critical services. She began her career working in digital media with Turner Broadcasting System. Inc. in Atlanta, where she managed digital media projects for some the world’s most recognizable news and entertainment brands, including, CNN, TNT and Sports Illustrated.

As the co-founder of GirlTrek, Vanessa is among the top 1% of social innovators in the world to receive fellowships from Echoing Green and The Aspen Institute.  She has been featured by CNN, NPR The Washington Post, The New York Times and named “Health Hero” by Essence Magazine.  Vanessa earned a B.A. in world arts and culture from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Katrina Johnston-Zimmerman is an urban anthropologist whose work focuses on analyzing urban spaces to enhance the lives of people. The founder of THINK.urban, a research consultancy firm based in Philadelphia, she has worked with organizations including Copenhagenize, Project for Public Spaces, and City ID to bring humanist philosophy into city planning and design. Her new project, The Women Led Cities Initiative, works to bring together women from various fields in urbanism to create a strategy toward a equitable city for all.


Rio, MAED, LCI, SCI, Policy and Programs Organizer, Multicultural Communities for Mobility Río was born and raised in Echo Park and is a committed multi-modal commuter with a strong preference for cycling. Throughout the last 15 years Río has focused on being an educator around bicycle safety, knowledge and advocacy teaching over 10,000 individuals and training over 100 bicycle educators.

Río has been active with MCM since 2013 and has advocated alongside underserved communities in creating safer and more equitable multi-modal forms of transportation. Río’s priority in this time has been to teach and train Black, Indigenous People of Color who are Teens, Youth, Queer, Trans*, Intersex or Women. Their bicycle journey has been threaded in various community based and grassroots organizations all over California-Arcata, the Bay Area and Los Angeles. A personal passion of Río is co-leading Queer Trans* Intersex Black Indigenous Spirit Bicycle Tours!

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