Diversity and inclusion expert Risha Grant to speak to faculty and staff during Jan. 28 Professional Development Day

Risha GrantRisha Grant, a diversity and inclusion expert, will speak to Minisink Valley faculty and staff during the district’s Professional Development Day on Monday, Jan. 28 and will focus on building inclusive school cultures.

Ms. Grant’s presentation is part of the district’s ongoing kindness and diversity initiatives to cultivate an atmosphere that embraces Minisink Valley’s diversity and supports a learning environment respectful of all students, staff and community members.

“We believe the pathway to helping our students become the best they can be is by offering learning opportunities in a positive and respectful school culture,” said Superintendent Brian Monahan. “That also includes ongoing character education opportunities to help our students best understand diversity and inclusion issues and positively incorporate their understanding of diversity and inclusion in their daily lives.  Our faculty and staff work very hard to reinforce and model this. Having Ms. Grant meet with us does more than just support what we do every day. We are confident she will provide us with suggestions to make our work even more successful.”

Ms. Grant is the CEO and founder of Risha Grant LLC. Her firm offers communication strategies, tactics and training as a catalyst to create inclusive cultures and diverse markets.  With over 20 years of experience, she offers communities and businesses steps to identify, own and confront bias.

In her biography, Ms. Grant said her interest in “societal-isms” like racism, sexism, ageism, classism “and plain old stupidism” began when she was very young.

Ms. Grant said instead of playing outside, she was inside “playing school…just in case her darker skin tone cheated her out of an equal education.”  She would later learn how experiences like these would feed into her biases. With that realization, Ms. Grant became committed to her focus on building inclusive cultures and attracting diverse markets.

As a national speaker, Ms. Grant has presented to governors, NBA teams, mayors, Fortune 500 companies, non-profit organizations and companies to reduce bias and further the understanding of diversity and inclusion.

Ms. Grant also created DiversityConneX.com, an online recruitment tool utilized by both small organizations and Fortune 500 companies to connect diverse professionals to their career opportunities, internships, and non-profit and corporate board positions.