Black Lives Matter Summit

Black Lives Matter Summit 2024

“Black Creative Expression, Politics and Social Change”

April 16, 2024

We are excited to announce the 9th annual Black Lives Matter SUMMIT 2024 entitled “Black Creative Expression, Politics and Social Change” that explores the power of Black expression, Black creativity, and Black politics while celebrating “50 Years of Hip Hop.” This event aims to provide a platform for thought-provoking discussions, artistic performances, and engaging conversations that highlight the rich contributions of the Black community in these interconnected realms. Join us as we delve into the diverse forms of Black expression, from literature to visual arts, music to spoken word, and examine how these creative outlets intersect with political movements and social change. Come and be inspired by the vibrant voices and narratives that shape Black culture and make a lasting impact on our society. Together, let us celebrate the beauty, resilience, and transformative power of Black artistry and activism.

Event Schedule

10:00am – 11:15am

Keynote Address & poetry performance by Cheryl Boyce-Taylor

Refreshments will be served around 9:30am before the Keynote session.

Little TheaterRegister for this event
11:30am – 12:30pmLunchPoolside CafeNo RSVP Required
12:45pm – 1:45pmBlack Poetry and ExpressionE-242Register for this event
2:00pm – 3:00pmBlack Culture Unveiled: Exploring the Intersection of Music, Activism, and PsychologyE-242Register for this event
3:15pm – 4:15pmHip Hop and the LawE-242Register for this event

Upcoming Events


Cheryl Boyce-TaylorCheryl Boyce-Taylor, Keynote Speaker

Cheryl Boyce-Taylor is a renowned Trinidadian immigrant poet raised in Queens, New York, and the author of seven poetry collections, including her most recent, The Limitless Heart: New and Selected Poems (1997-2022). Cheryl’s verse memoir, Mama Phife Represents, a tribute to her son Malik (aka Phife Dawg of A Tribe Called Quest), was awarded the 2021 Publishing Triangle Audre Lorde Award for Lesbian Poetry.

Jeffrey BattsKazembe Batts

Is a human rights activist & organizer.  When he was 13 years old his best friend’s father, Arthur Miller was choked to death in Crown Heights, Brooklyn by 77th police precinct officers. A few years later Kazembe joined the movement when artist Michael Stewart was killed at the Union Square subway station in 1983.  These killings propelled Kazembe into a lifetime of social justice activities that were not limited to fighting police criminality.  Anti-apartheid, student tuition reforms, building affordable housing and countering economic inequities are also areas where he focused his energy and time to help build a better NYC and world.  As a lover of the culture in 1999 Mr. Batts, along with a few friends founded the world’s first Hip-Hop & social justice parade which takes place annually in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn.

Nahziel BowenNahziel Bowen

Former LAGCC student and current John Jay Student Nahziel Bowen. He currently works with DYCD and plans events for the community that involve artists and the Hip Hop community.  He was panelist for HIP HOP and the Law.

Zahra CaldwellH. Zahra Caldwell

H. Zahra Caldwell, MA, MEd, PH D is an Associate Professor at Westfield State University in Ethnic and Gender Studies. She is an educator and cultural historian who teaches in the fields of History, Black Studies, and Women Studies. Her community and academic work is focused on unpacking and expanding the definition of resistance as discussed within the long struggle for African American freedom, particularly as it relates to African American women, artistry, and inventive activism. One contribution to her field is an original study of the lineage of Black Female Cool. She has also published work on Black cultural luminaries such as Hazel Scott, Prince, and Beyonce. Her current book project, “The Fiercest Sort of Racial Pride’: Five Black Women in Art, Activism, and Layered Resistance, looks at the intersecting creative and political labor of key Black women activist artists between 1930-1960.

Tiffany FriendTiffany A. Friend

Tiffany A. Friend is the Founding Partner of the Friend Law Group. Ms. Friend is originally from Bergen County, New Jersey. She was accepted to Rutgers University in Newark, New Jersey. She attended Rutgers University from 2005 to 2010, where she obtained a Bachelors in Criminal Justice. Also, Ms. Friend was the President of her sorority’s undergraduate chapter, Alpha Kappa Alpha.

In 2013, Ms. Friend attended Roger Williams University School of Law located in Bristol, Rhode Island. While in law school she was the President and Combined Northern New England Sub-Regional Director for the North Eastern Black Law Student Association.

Read MoreMoreover, she was a member of the Moot Court Board and the Honor Board. The summer of 2015, Ms. Friend partook in the London Summer Study Abroad Program where she studied entertainment and media law at the University of London. During her last year of Law School, she was a Rule Nine Student Attorney for the Roger Williams University School of Law Immigration Clinic. She represented clients in several immigration court proceedings, including but not limited to Master Calendar Hearings. In 2016, after graduating law school, Ms. Friend was hired as a Law Clerk for the Honorable Gregg A. Padovano (Civil Division) at the New Jersey Superior Courthouse in Hackensack, New Jersey. Currently Ms. Friend is a member of the State Bar of New Jersey and New York. Also, she is an Adjunct Professor for the Borough of Manhattan College, where she teaches Criminal Justice. In her downtime, she enjoys cooking, reading, traveling, and spending time with her son and niece.

Nathan Hosannah Bio ImageDr. Nathan Hosannah

Dr. Nathan Hosannah is an Associate Professor of Engineering at LaGuardia Community College (CUNY) & has been performing regional atmospheric weather/climate research since 2008. He credits Hip Hop (he creates) with helping him attain his PhD.

Danon Singh Bio ImageDanon Singh

Danon Singh is a practicing attorney in the state of New York and currently works as a consultant for multiple firms in the compliance field and also serves as a lawyer in the entertainment field. Yes, he also makes music!

Temesgen TocrurayTemesgen Tocruray

Temesgen is an experienced creative consultant specializing in learning and development, DEIA (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility), communication strategies, and content design. With over 12 years of experience in public and private sectors as a consultant, facilitator, and thought leader, creating initiatives with scalable, data-driven impact by designing innovative educational programming that focuses on expanding cultural competencies, socio-emotional health, community empowerment, and youth advocacy. In addition, he builds professional development seminars, progressive organizational dialogues, and transformational company cultures to promote more equitable professional spaces. He holds a B.A. from Texas Southern University.

Shaunee WallaceShaunee Wallace

S. Lenise Wallace, Ph.D. is a motivational speaker, communication professional and college professor teaching communication courses at CUNY LaGuardia Community College in New York City. She has over twenty years of experience in public relations and image consulting. Her research interests include public relations, and race, gender and sexuality in mass media. Dr. Wallace received her Ph.D. in Media Studies from Howard University where she researched Latinas in Public Relations, their career experiences and ethnic diversity. She co-authored a book chapter, Black, White & Brown: A Collaborative Autoethnography Analyzing the Race & Friendship of Three Women in Academia. Currently, she is writing her upcoming book, Who’s Reppin You? Being Your Best Rep: Personally, Professionally & Spiritually.

Planning Committee

Special thanks to our committee members for their work in planning and executing the Black Lives Matter Summit.

Rachel Romain, ChairMulticultural Exchange
Allia Abdullah-MattaEnglish
Kazembe BattsStudent Affairs
Ayoka Christopher-SkinnerASAP Program
Andre FordCenter for Career & Professional Development
Sultan JenkinsNatural Sciences Department
Ryan Mann-HamiltonSocial Science
Wendy NicholsonOffice of the President
Sonia RodriguezEnglish
Ingrid VerasNatural Sciences
Charis VictoryASAP Program

Wednesday, September 13

La Casa’s Fall Open House
2-4 p.m. | M-Building, M-141

Tuesday, September 26

El Coro de LaGuardia-Latinx Mixer
12-3 p.m. | E-Building, Poolside Café and Cobblestone Courtyard

Wednesday, September 27

Film Screening and Discussion: “Faith in Blackness: an Exploration of AfroLatine Spirituality”
2-4 p.m. | E-Building, E-501

Tuesday, October 03

Hispanic Heritage Month Movie Screening – “Under the Same Moon”
1-3 p.m. | E-Building, Poolside Café

Author Visit: Colombian Author Liliana Castillo Mosquera
4:30-6 p.m. | E-Building, E-501

Tuesday, October 10

Boat People: A Conversation
6:30-8 p.m. | Online (Zoom)

Thursday, October 12

Being 3 by Carla Tomassini
1-3:30 p.m. | E-Building, E-111