With more than 25 years of teaching experience, Karl Debro has taught at every level from middle school to graduate school. His work on AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) at both the high school and community college levels focused on helping Black, Brown, low income, immigrant and first generation to students with average grades, prepare for and gain admission to four year colleges. In 2012, Debro became the founding director of the Gateway to College, a national dual enrollment program for high school drop-outs that is housed on the Contra Costa College campus.
A recent Jefferson Award winner for his work as an educator, Dr. Debro has also been honored for his work to bring safety and respect to LGBTQ students. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy from UC Berkeley, a Master’s degree and a Doctorate in Education from Mills College.
Deborah Hailu | Moderator
Deborah Hailu is inextricably tied to Africa and the whole of African Diaspora. she is a consummate student of the methodology, legacy, and struggle against "white supremacy".
Zigi Lowenberg | Past Moderator
Zigi has extensive experience as an artist in multiple disciplines specifically in multicultural contexts. She is best known for her work as a jazzpoet, performer and co-leader in the seminal jazzpoetry ensemble, UpSurge! She is the executive producer on the ensemble's two highly acclaimed CDs, Chromatology and All Hands on Deck. Zigi has performed as a soloist at Birdland Jazzista Social Club, Plymouth Jazz and Justice Church, and the Oakland Public Conservatory of Music’s Count Basie Tribute Band. Zigi’s acting credits include Lissa Tyler Renaud's The Lysistrata Project at the Julia Morgan Center for the Arts, she played Alice B. Toklas for Hans Gallas’ Stein-Toklas Project at the SF Koret Library, and performed in John Brown’s Truth, written and directed by William Crossman. A native New Yorker, Zigi grew up around art and activism, residing in the East Village when it still had grit. She currently lives with her husband and creative partner, Raymond Nat Turner in Harlem and Oakland.
Raymond Nat Turner | Past Moderator
Raymond is an NYC poet privileged to have read at the Harriet Tubman Centennial Symposium. He is Artistic Director of the stalwart JazzPoetry Ensemble UpSurge! and has appeared at numerous festivals and venues including the Monterey Jazz Festival and Panafest in Ghana West Africa. He currently is Poet-in-Residence at Black Agenda Report, and a frequent contributor to Dissident Voice and Struggle. He is also a Steering Committee Member of the New York chapter of the National Writers Union. Turner has opened for such people as James Baldwin, People’s Advocate Cynthia McKinney, radical sportswriter Dave Zirin and CA Congresswoman Barbara Lee following her lone vote against attacking Afghanistan.
Kate Mayer | Collaborating Director + Co Producer
Kate grew up in Chicago and moved to San Francisco in 1984. Her script "Talk About AIDS" (produced by Levi Strauss & Co.) has been used by many companies to educate blue-collar workers. She wrote an award-winning script: "Everything You Always Wanted To Know About Stress But Didn't Have Time To Ask" for the California State Bar Association. With "Living Room Revolution: The Race Dialogues," Kate Mayer hopes to inspire others to start race dialogues.
Mary H. Webb | Collaborating Director + Co Producer
Mary is a novelist (The God-Hustlers, "Glinda The Good: A Tale Of Four Lovers"); a playwright ("The Incest Project," "Playing For Keeps") and a filmmaker. "Living Room Revolution: The Race Dialogues" was inspired by the dialogues she has hosted in her home for the last 12 years. With this film, Mary Webb hopes to inspire other people to start race dialogues in their living rooms. Mary Webb lives in Berkeley, California where she writes, makes films and teaches creative writing. Mary's life philosophy book Suck The Juice Out of Every Moment is available free at www.suckthejuice.com.
Edwin Herzog | Cinematographer
Edwin has over thirty years of experience as producer, director and camera person. He has produced and shot over 50 documentary films for social change, labor justice, and spiritual awakening. He founded the National Public Television monthly series "We Do The Work" that aired on nearly 100 PBS stations.
David Sturdevant | Cinematographer
David is a freelance videographer, specializing in performance video. He is the leader and founder of the highly acclaimed "San Francisco Medicine Ball Band" featuring a rotating cast of the West Coast's finest musicians for more than 40 years. David is also the music director of Oakland's "Plymouth Church Of Jazz & Justice." He is a vocalist and plays guitar, chromatic harmonica, mandola, banjo and keyboards. He is a songwriter and has been an educator in Bay Area public schools for many years.