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Barbara Beckwith

Barbara BeckwithBarbara Beckwith was one of the first
names I heard as I set out on my journey. A friend of a friend had recommended I take a course she co-led, White People Challenging
Racism: Moving from Talk to Action
. Still a little nervous that my ignorance would make people see me as not worth talking to, I steeled my nerves and called her. Her humor
and sense of camaraderie put me immediately at ease. As I described my experience of waking up, she kept saying, “Me too! That happened to me too! I felt just like that!” Barbara,
also a writer, supported me throughout the entire process, reading my work as it progressed, going to events with me, and being my roommate at conferences. She used both my
writings and personal interactions with others to point out how my language and social habits could be perceived as racially insensitive, often weaving in an example of how she’d
once done the same thing and commiserating with me about how hard it can be to change these habits. We now work together to develop, promote, and co-lead the course that first
led me to her.