Young, Gifted and Black: Finding Your Voice


2021 Student Empowerment Conference

Wednesday, Feb. 3 | 9 a.m. to Noon


smiling female grad

Come together with high school students from across the region!

Join us for an exciting morning of inspirational talks and interactive workshops. We'll be sharing invaluable resources for finding your voice. 

Featured guests:

  • Kimberly Ellis – Director of San Francisco's Department on the Status of Women
  • Lloyd A. Holmes – President of De Anza College
  • Joseph Marshall – Founder of Alive & Free, host of Street Soldiers Radio on 106 KMEL

smiling male grad

This event is hosted by the De Anza College Office of Outreach, Black Faculty, Staff and Administrators Network (BFSA), Men of Color Community (MC2), Umoja Community and Office of Equity, Social Justice and Multicultural Education



Program Schedule

All of these activities will be held on Zoom. Click a yellow button to join an activity. Be sure to check the list of breakout sessions so you can click to join one of those at the appropriate time.

Time Activity Speaker
9–9:10 a.m. Welcome and Opening Remarks

Lloyd A. Holmes, 
President, De Anza College

9:1010 a.m. Keynote Address

Joseph Marshall Jr., 
Founder, Alive and Free

1010:10 a.m. Pause Before Breakout Sessions  
10:1011 a.m. Breakout Sessions
1111:10 a.m. Pause After Breakout Sessions  
11:1011:50 a.m. Open Student Forum 

Erick Aragon, Maurice Canyon, Sheldon Fields,
Deborah Taylor
and Glynn Wallis

11:10 a.m.–Noon Closing 

Melinda Hughes, Faculty Assistant Director, 
Extended Opportunities Programs and Services



Breakout Sessions Begin at 10:10 a.m. ~ Choose One!


Still I Rise: Navigating Black Trauma

Moderator: Derrick Felton, Instructor, Psychology


Black Gyrl Magic

Moderator: Kimberly Ellis, Director, San Francisco Department on the Status of Women


Village Porch Talk: Everyone's Got Choices

Moderator: Maurice Canyon, Counselor, Umoja Community


Empowering the Black Student: Understanding Who You Are in Society

Moderator: Glynn Wallis, Counselor, Extended Opportunities Programs and Services


Motivating Our Black Men

Moderator: Sheldon Fields, Counselor, Men of Color Community





Featured Guest Biographies

Kimberly EllisKimberly Ellis is director of San Francisco’s Department on the Status of Women, where she is responsible for developing policies and programs that increase equity for women. She is a longtime political activist and former executive director of Emerge California, which trains women candidates to run for public office.

Ellis, who was appointed to her current post by San Francisco Mayor London Breed, holds a law degree from the John F. Kennedy School of Law and a bachelor’s degree from Jacksonville University.


Lloyd HolmesLloyd A. Holmes became president of De Anza College in 2020. He is a veteran educator with a track record of removing barriers to student success. 

Holmes grew up in a single-parent home in rural Mississippi and received an associate degree at Itawamba Community College before transferring to the University of Mississippi, where he earned a bachelor's in accounting, a master's in higher education and a doctorate in educational leadership.


Joe MarshallJoseph E. Marshall Jr. is an author, community activist and founder of Alive & Free, an international violence prevention organization that began as the Omega Boys Club in San Francisco. He's also a longtime host of the Street Soldiers radio talk show on 106 KMEL.

Marshall has a master's degree in education from San Francisco State and a doctorate in psychology from psychology from the Wright Institute.


We regret that San Francisco Mayor London Breed, who had planned to participate, will not be able to attend the conference.

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