Cathy O’Neil

Podcast Description

My argument in my Shame book is that it’s like a sort of fortress…of denial that white people have like surrounded themselves with because they are living in cognitive dissonance. And that’s what shame does. Shame when it’s real and it and it hits. It hurts so badly that you’re like how can I square this with being a good person…And you have a choice at that moment, and like some white people have been like, “Oh, let’s march against police brutality.” And some white people are like, “Let’s just pretend that it’s not happening.”

Cathy O’Neil earned a Ph.D. in math from Harvard, was a postdoc at the MIT math department, and a professor at Barnard College where she published a number of research papers in arithmetic algebraic geometry. She then switched over to the private sector, working as a quant for the hedge fund D.E. Shaw in the middle of the credit crisis, and then for RiskMetrics, a risk software company that assesses risk for the holdings of hedge funds and banks. She left finance in 2011 and started working as a data scientist in the New York start-up scene, building models that predicted people’s purchases and clicks. She wrote Doing Data Science in 2013 and launched the Lede Program in Data Journalism at Columbia in 2014. She is a regular contributor to Bloomberg View and wrote the book Weapons of Math Destruction: how big data increases inequality and threatens democracy. She recently founded ORCAA, an algorithmic auditing company.

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Cathy O’Neil

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Ayodele Odubela

Podcast Description

It’s funny because the title of my upcoming book is called Uncovering Bias in ML and I feel like it’s…it’s not that it doesn’t go deep. I feel like that’s the first layer, right? Yes, it talks about discovering that this bias is here. But I’m like: I make it clear from the first chapter…Yeah I’m not hear about…here just to tell you this exists. I’m here to tell you that it is your responsibility and job to change it. Or you are continuing to reinforce the status quo. You’re complicit in the white supremacy. You’re complicit in the racism, the homophobia. Every aspect of that you are complicit in actively reinforcing if you do NOT take these steps. And I think that’s the thing. People are like: “Ethics is like, oh, it’s just a couple steps at the end”. I’m like…we have to destroy the entire workflow every company is using to build AI products, or it’s not gonna change. I’m not gonna keep putting a band aid on it. I’m not gonna keep talking about band aids.

Ayodele Odubela is a Data Scientist working on driver risk mitigation at SambaSafety in Denver, CO. She earned her Master’s degree in Data Science after transitioning to tech from social media marketing. She’s created algorithms that predict consumer segment movement, goals in hockey, and the location of firearms using radio frequency sensors. Ayodele is passionate about using tech to improve the lives of marginalized people.

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Dr. Sherita Golden

Podcast Description

Ya know, we all have an Esther moment. And you know, if you think about, remember the story of Esther in the Bible like she found out that there was a plot to kill…annihilate all the Jewish people. And her husband Mordecai came to her and said, you know Esther, you know there’s this plot and don’t think that because you’re the queen that you’re gonna be spared. They’re going to kill us. And so, unless you go in there and talk the king and let him know this is happening, you know, we’re all going to die. And he said who knows perhaps you’ve come to the kingdom for such a time as this. And she knew that it was risky to go into the king uninvited and make a request, but she did. She said if I perish, let me perish. Because she knew she had to go and try to at least save her people and I think we all have an Esther moment at some point in our life where either we can sit in silence or we have to step up and be ready to step forward and answer that call. So that that sort of what happened to me in 2015.

Dr. Sherita Hill Golden is the Hugh P. McCormick Family Professor of Endocrinology and Metabolism and Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer for Johns Hopkins Medicine.  She holds joint appointments in the Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology, and Clinical Research, in the Department of Epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and in the Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality.  The author of more than 190 articles, Dr. Golden’s research interests focus mental health complications of diabetes, understanding and eliminating diabetes health disparities and implementing and evaluating systems interventions to improve patient safety and quality of care in hospitalized patients with diabetes.  In the community Dr. Golden is a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and Co-Directs the Health Ministry with her husband, Dr. Christopher Golden, at Clearview Baptist Church in Woodlawn, MD. She is the proud mother of Andrew Golden, a Journalism and African-American Studies major at Northwestern University.

She serves as the Principal Investigator of the Johns Hopkins site of the Diabetes Prevention Program Outcome Study and is an elected member of the American Society for Clinical Investigation and the Association of American Physicians.  In 2017 she was the co-recipient of the Walter Reed Distinguished Achievement Award from the University of Virginia School of Medicine, Medical Alumni Association, and Medical School Foundation, which recognizes professional accomplishment, outstanding innovation, and exemplary leadership in the field of Medicine. In 2018 Dr. Golden was named a winner of the 17th Annual Women Worth Watching Awards from the Profiles in Diversity Journal. She was one of 132 winners from across the globe recognized as an executive leading the way to excellence in the workplace, marketplace and the world. Dr. Golden is also the recipient of the 2019 University of Virginia Distinguished Alumna Award. She is a member of the American Diabetes Association National Board of Directors. In the community Dr. Golden is a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and Co-Directs the Health Ministry with her husband, Dr. Christopher Golden, at Clearview Baptist Church in Woodlawn, MD. She is the proud mother of Andrew Golden, a Journalism and African-American Studies major at Northwestern University.

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Dr. Sherita Golden

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Ayani Good [Rebroadcast]

Podcast Description

[I wanted to rebroadcast this episode before the 2020 U.S. Presidential election because of the racist comments from Jared Kushner “that Black Americans have to want to be successful” because there are many who believe this narrative. This interview documents the personal story of someone with the lived experiences of how the systems, institutions, and policies rooted in white supremacy are designed to elevate whiteness while promoting anti-Blackness. Because knowledge is power and ignorance is no longer an excuse for causing harm.]

“People just need to stop being afraid of repercussions when they speak up. You’re gonna get repercussions when you don’t speak up.”

Ayani Good, is a retired IL attorney, high school administrator, and university-level educator (Chicago, IL and Sewanee, TN). Her legal practice was concentrated in the area of nonprofit corporation law. She is an active board member of organizations in Chicago, IL and Durban, South Africa. Ayani has over 20 years of training and development experience, curriculum development, program management and evaluation and grants writing.

She is a member of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority,Inc. and is an advocate of social justice and human rights issues

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Ayani Good

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Lizz Westman

Podcast Description

‘I must have been really young cuz I remember…I have a freaky memory, like I was a creepy little white kid, umm, I was so creepy. I tried to sabotage my parents moving to the suburbs for two years and I would and I would like put little like cards that were like just like: “Don’t…don’t buy this house” and I would like…this is like peak Children of the Corn era and I had bright white hair and I would literally look at them with my big ass blue eyes be like:\N”I come with the house.”

Lizz Westman is an IT design and production strategy consultant based in Portland, Oregon, and has two decades of experience working on The Information SuperhighwayTM. She has helped shape how online content and digital media interacts with its users – for better and for worse – since the very early web 1.0 days and always with the intent to make room for others. A former journalist and satirist, her voice and work have been featured on CBS News, ABC, Comedy Central, G4, IFC, and was openly mocked by South Park twice. Lizz went full nerd about a decade ago in part because her attempts to make room for others were not very well received in major entertainment and news venues and now works at making infrastructure, design, content, and production styles less obnoxious, aggravating, and tedious for those involved. And regardless of work titles or places, Lizz spends most of her time drawing together connections in our society and culture, especially at the intersections and points of reference where history, science, and storytelling tend to meet. And as the last elected student chairperson of Grinnell College’s American Studies department, she is adamant about working on dismantling and deconstructing the myriad of racist, self-serving, and overtly harmful myths, half-truths, and blatant lies that weave the tattered fabric of this farce of a democracy has been built upon. Lizz is vehemently pro-metric and would love to dismantle even more of her own house in a further attempt to decolonize more and more of the shared and sacred spaces she is honored to be a part of – even as or if she is pointing out the flaws and needs for improvement immediately.

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Lizz Westman

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Minda Harts

Podcast Description

“When I was growing up, my white friends would say: if I was around during slavery I never would have…I would have taken you and all that stuff and it’s like, okay. Well this is this is a version of it right now, you know, so what are you going to do it when it counts, you know, it’s obvious we’re not enslaved in that way. But every generation has a uprising moment like you either get to be courageous or you get to be cautious and which one is it going to be?”

Minda Harts is the CEO of The Memo LLC, a career development platform for women of color. She is the best-selling author of The Memo: What Women of Color Need To Know To Secure A Seat At The Table. Minda is an Assistant Professor at NYU Wagner. She has been featured on MSNBC’s Morning Joe, ​Fast​ ​Company​, The Guardian​, and Time Magazine. Minda frequently speaks at companies like Microsoft, Levi’s, Google, and Bloomberg on topics such as Leadership, Managing Diverse Teams and Self-Advocacy. She also hosts a weekly podcast called Secure The Seat.

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Minda Harts

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Dr. Oni Blackstock

Podcast Description

“And I really felt so emboldened by what was going on that I asked to speak to [him/former manager] again. And I said, and I spoke to him on the phone and I said: Ya know, I want to be completely honest with you, um while I understand this was not your intention this was the impact of your actions on me. These actions that I listed…it wasn’t even a comprehensive list…all of these actions left me feeling humiliated and demoralized. I could not fully inhabit my role if you were not going to allow whoever it is, ya know, to be in that position to fully inhabit that role like you should have just been straight up from the beginning and said you know, you’re going to come in and do this, but I’m going to be right there with you and you’re not going to get any of the acclaim or any recognition, if someone had told me that from the get-go, I would have known what I was getting into, and probably wouldn’t have gone, um. Just be honest about what the reality is.

Dr. Oni Blackstock is recognized as a thought leader and influencer in the areas of HIV, health equity, and racial justice. She is the founder and Executive Director of Health Justice, a consulting firm providing content expertise in HIV, sexual health, LGBTQ health and racial equity to organizations focused on public health and health care. She is a primary care and HIV doctor and researcher who sees patients at Harlem Hospital. Dr. Blackstock recently served as Assistant Commissioner for the New York City Health Department’s Bureau of HIV where she led the City’s response to the HIV epidemic. She received her undergraduate and her medical degrees from Harvard and completed her primary care Internal Medicine residency and ambulatory chief residency Montefiore/Einstein as well as an HIV clinical fellowship at Harlem Hospital. She received a Masters of Health Sciences Research from Yale School of Medicine’s Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholars Program.

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Max Jordan

Podcast Description

“People sometimes think that like having had like, you know having had a Black president like changes people like attitudes towards it doesn’t, so…being in med school has made it…ya know, I feel like this is not the first time that I’ve been in like in a white space where I went to graduate school at Georgia Tech, but I feel like it’s been probably the most eye-opening experience when it comes to like educating me about how racism works and how racism is communicated.”

Max Jordan is a medical student in my final year at the Yale University School of Medicine, in New Haven, CT. Prior to attending Yale, he worked as a researcher in the Merryman Mechanobiology lab at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN, having earned a M.S. in Bioengineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology, in Atlanta, GA (2015) and a B.S. in Civil and Environmental Engineering (Summa Cum Laude) at Howard University in Washington, DC (2013). 

His previous experiences have shaped his academic and extracurricular interests related to medicine. In terms of research, he’s interested in improving the quality of care for people from marginalized and stigmatized groups. This has led him to develop a research thread in addiction medicine since his first year of medical school. Max also interested in how residential and occupational environmental exposures shape people’s health (see civil & environmental engineering background!), and in identifying key levers that can be activated as buffers against the effects of climate change and environmental racism. This has led him to research associations between access to nature and health outcomes, most notably, hypertension in pregnancy, a leading cause of maternal mortality.

In his free time, he hosted and produced a podcast titled “Flip the Script,” focused on elucidating mechanisms behind observed health inequities, and highlighting the work of scholars, physicians and community health workers who make it their priority to address said inequities. He also write about racism in medical education based on personal experiences and observations. These observations have led to me developing a budding research interest in healthcare workforce diversity.

Max likes getting around on his bike and appreciate efficient public transit. Playing tennis is my absolute favorite thing to do.”

 

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Max Jordan

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Melissa Ryan

Podcast Description

“I mean that’s the ultimate dream right? Like, I think if you think back to 2011-2012 when you saw these uprisings around the world that were live streamed you saw Occupy protests and it was: “Oh, the Internet is great!…it’s gonna democratize communication” and I think to a certain extent it has and certainly voices have emerged that wouldn’t have otherwise. We are also seeing you know the ill-affect of that. Ya know, and that Holocaust deniers have a voice and conspiracy theorists have a voice and white nationalists have a voice, so finding the right balance of that I think is going to be the battle of a generation”

Melissa Ryan helps people, policymakers, and institutions combat online toxicity and extremism. (AKA trolls, the so-called alt-right, disinformation, and fake news.)

She write Ctrl Alt-Right Delete, a weekly newsletter, that reaches more than 16,000 readers. She’s also written commentary for outlets like Buzzfeed NewsRefinery29, and NowThis.

Previously, she was a digital strategist for Democratic campaigns and progressive causes. She worked with influencers and online communities to raise moneymobilize activistsdrive online conversations and shape media narratives. Her familiarity with this space gives her a unique insight into how trolls and extremists organize.

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Melissa Ryan

Become a #causeascene Podcast sponsor because disruption and innovation are products of individuals who take bold steps in order to shift the collective and challenge the status quo.

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Nicole Archambault

Podcast Description

“I’m not actually able to visualize it in my head, so it doesn’t have an actual structure to it. A lot of this is mathematically related…ya know numbers and variables…can be very abstract and so I had difficulty. It was like constant confusion. Between the autism and the non-verbal learning disability I’m a veritable cornucopia of mental illness and neuro-divergence at this point. But ya know what, I love it and I wouldn’t have it any other way because it’s made me exactly who I am.”

Nicole Archambault is a Boston-based web developer and educational technology (EdTech) entrepreneur.

After abandoning a CS major in college, she taught herself to program in 2015 using Treehouse. She still has a long way to go. But most importantly, Nicole made a career change to an industry that she loves, doing work that she’s passionate about, and solving problems that matter.

Nicole is incredibly passionate about issues concerning women, and technology is no exception. So it should come as no surprise that she wanted to help other women successfully become web developers and software engineers, by breaking down walls and effecting real change.

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