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2024 Workshop Bios

“When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid." Audrey Lorde

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Whats Happening Brother - Unknown Artist

Morning Workshops

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Jimmie L. Heags, Jr., MA, LSC, LPCC, LADC, ACS, Counselors & Therapists

Jimmie L. Heags, Jr., is a seasoned counseling professional with over 20 years of experience in education and therapy. A graduate of Metropolitan State University and Adler Graduate School, Jimmie holds degrees in Individualized Studies and Psychotherapy. He's accredited with three distinct licenses in school, clinical, and drug and alcohol counseling and has certifications in Trauma Informed Practice and Co-Occurring Disorders. As a recognized authority in his field, Jimmie is an LPC & LPCC board-approved clinical supervisor by the Minnesota Board of Behavioral Health and Therapy.


Jimmie’s practice primarily serves black, indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC). His counseling approach is marked by genuine curiosity, treating his client's thoughts, feelings, and experiences with respect and honor. He is a proficient trainer and consultant in Restorative Practices, Crisis Prevention and Intervention (CPI), and other Social Emotional Learning (SEL) methods. Outside his therapy work, Jimmie is an Adjunct Instructor at the Adler Graduate School and an active Minneapolis NAACP's Integrated Health Committee member. Committed to providing comprehensive mental health services, Jimmie continually incorporates new insights, such as the generational trauma work of Resmaa Menakem, to enhance his practice and better serve his clients.

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Dr. Altreisha Foster, an author, scientist, baker, and entrepreneur

Dr. Altreisha Foster, is best known for her work in Public Health, her contributions to vaccine science, and advancements in infectious diseases. She is the CEO and Founder of Foster-Bentho Scientific Consultants. A firm that aids underserved jurisdictions in vaccine programming, medical sociology, and community engagement.


She has over 10 years of experience in the Infectious Diseases field. Her career in public health and vaccine science began in Washington, DC. Later, she worked in the Caribbean as a vaccine principal. Her research has been published in several prestigious journals, including Nature.


Most recently, r. Foster, wife, mother, scientist, and baker, is also now the proud author of the book “Cake Therapy, How Baking Changed My Life”, where she highlights the correlation between trauma, her life experiences, and hardships, and overcoming the sweet decadence of baking through her recipes. Premised in purpose, Dr. Foster specializes in baking extraordinary, flavored cakes and goodies. She finds peace, solace, remembrance, and renewal of life in her nurtured craft and has since been sharing it with the world.


She is now a formidable baker and entrepreneur. With just a couple of years of training under her belt, the perfectionist she has quickly mastered the art of baking and baking architecture at record breaking speeds. Born in Jamaica, this Caribbean principled, Minneapolis, Minnesota based resident is now the face and masterful hands behind the cakes of Sugarspoon Desserts, a premier baking and dessert making company in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Her desserts are highly sought after and have appeared in local and international media, both print and electronic.


She is also the CEO and Founder of the Cake Therapy Foundation, designed to offer baking as a form of therapy to systems impacted women and girls. She was recently listed among the top 20 female entrepreneurs to watch in 2023.


She is a graduate of Campion College and the University of Technology in Jamaica, as well as Howard University and George Washington University, Milken School of Public Health in the USA.


Dr. Foster is married to Dr. Oladi Bentho, whom she met at Howard University College of Medicine. They currently live in Minneapolis, Minnesota, with their two children, Kende and K’nedy.

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Anthony Williams, Executive Director of Community Education, Athletics and Activities
Anthony Williams, is a graduate of Edison High School in Minneapolis. He attended the University of MN, where he received his B.A. in Political Science. He also has a master’s degree in Public and Non-Profit Administration and a Director of Community Education Administrative License. He has worked his entire professional life in the field of education. He spent 13 years with CDF’s Freedom Schools, working his way up from Servant Leader Intern to Executive Director. He also worked with MPS for 14 years, working with students and families in various capacities. As an Associate Educator at Bethune Community School, Anthony worked with parents and educational leaders to develop programming to mentor students on the issues of self-esteem and leadership. Since his days at Bethune, he has worked extensively with Adult Education, going from Career Exploration Navigator to Site Supervisor to Program Manager. In August 2020, Anthony assumed the role of Executive Director of Community Education at Minneapolis Public Schools. Being responsible for over 300 Community Education employees at the beginning of the pandemic, Anthony remained committed to staff well-being, effective community engagement, high-quality programming, and equity. In July of 2021, he accepted the Executive Director of Community Education, Athletics, and Activities position with Robbinsdale Area Schools.  Anthony considers himself a servant leader whose main objective is to support children, families, and the community in reaching a level of self-sufficiency through education and access.
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Latosha Cox, skilled facilitator, trainer, public speaker, and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) practitioner
Latosha Cox, (she, her, hers) is a skilled facilitator, trainer, public speaker, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) practitioner, and strong mental health aho always leads with authenticity and vulnerability. As the oldest of 5 children and only daughter, she grew up in St. Paul’s Rondo neighborhood and graduated from St. Paul Central High School. Latosha later graduated from Augsburg University as a married student parent. She is happily divorced a mother of 2 daughters (ages 17 and 9), and embraces a healthy co-parenting relationship with her ex-husband. She brings a wealth of knowledge and lived experiences from working in various capacities and roles in nonprofits, philanthropy, education, and finances. Her previous role was in the non-profit sector as Public Allies Twin Cities Director of Learning and Leadership. Latosha launched her public speaking, coaching, consulting, and training business called Black Girl Sabbatical™️after embarking on an 18-month healing and self-discovery journey of prioritizing her mental health and well-being and participating in experiences that brought her JOY! Latosha and her daughters have embraced a healing and therapy journey with their individual black female therapist for the past 2 years. As a leadership development and transition coach, Latosha loves to support people's and organizations' mental health and holistic wellness so that we all can continue to do the work we have been called to do. She believes women do not need to suffer with their mental and holistic health in marriages, domestic violence relationships, in their careers & more.
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Cedric Weatherspoon, LMFT, President of Empower Therapeutic Support Services Inc.
Deseria Galloway, CEO of Wellspring Second Chance Center

Cedric  Weatherspoon, is a dedicated professional with a passion for empowering individuals and families through client-centered care. With over two decades of experience in the field, I have earned expertise in Marriage and Family Therapy, program development, and professional leadership. My journey in the mental health field has been marked by a commitment to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion, as well as a belief in the transformative power of respectful and client-centered approaches. I proudly serve as the President of Empower Therapeutic Support Services Inc., a practice I co-founded in 2007, located in North Minneapolis. In this role, I employ a client-centered service model to support residents in the Twin Cities area who are navigating multiple life stressors. My work is centered on creating a safe and empowering environment for clients to make positive choices about their lives and families.


Deseria Galloway's educational journey has been marked by a pursuit of knowledge and a dedication to empowering others. She holds a Master's degree from the University of Minnesota and a Bachelor's from Central State University in Xenia, Ohio. As the CEO of Wellspring Second Chance Center, Deseria is at the forefront of initiatives aimed at helping youth and adult ex-offenders successfully reintegrate into society. She thoroughly knows re-entry programs, intergenerational incarceration issues, and strategies for improving academic success. Deseria Galloway's life and career are characterized by a profound commitment to service, advocacy, and a genuine dedication to making a difference in the lives of individuals and communities. Her multifaceted contributions reflect a deep sense of purpose and a tireless commitment to creating positive change in the world.

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Leo Howard III, M.Ed, Greater Twin Cities United Way, Program Manager and University of Minnesota, Adjunct professor 

Leo Howard III, M.Ed, is current program manager for the 80x3 initiative with the Greater Twin Cities United Way and adjunct professor of the University of Minnesota.


Growing up, through my own hardships, loss, and struggles, I saw firsthand the importance of having positive support in a young person's life outside of their parents. Organizations like the "Horizons Youth Program" in South Minneapolis put me and countless other young people in a position to be successful in spite of our surroundings. Giving us the support and guidance needed to navigate the myriad of issues we faced on a daily basis. At my core, I am a youth worker, aiming to address the needs of my community through love, education, and tangible resources because of the love and support I received. My goal is not only to give that same support and love to the next generation of kids but to take it a step further to normalize wellness and mental health, especially for our kids of color. I want our youngest learners to develop the self-esteem, confidence, and intrinsic motivation needed to overcome the traps that we have to navigate on a daily basis. I want our families to know that taking care of our mental health isn't only for the Rich, white, and wealthy but something that we deserve as well.


My career, research, and life have been dedicated to finding unique and effective approaches to youth and community work. I have developed, run, and implemented curriculum and youth enrichment programs catered to the young people of color I currently serve. Realizing that there was a void, nothing that truly existed for the youth of my community. Working to normalize and make therapy a viable, realistic option for our kids, I have also developed and taught a community workshop/course that highlights hip hop and rap's therapeutic value for our youth. In the end, all of our youth deserve to be loved, cared for, and supported. I'm living proof that it makes all of the difference. Everything is Connected!

Afternoon Workshops

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Tikki Brown, Minnesota Department of Human Services Children and Family Services Assistant Commissioner
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Cedrick Frazier, Minnesota House of Representatives,

Tikki Brown, serves as the assistant commissioner for Children and Family Services for the Minnesota Department of Human Services. She is responsible for services and policies that promote adoption, foster care, child protection, child support, child care, refugee services, and cash and food support. She will focus on supporting Gov. Walz’ and Lt. Gov. Flanagan’s stand to make Minnesota the “best place for children to grow up” while advancing equity and inclusion for the children and families we serve.


Before her appointment as assistant commissioner in 2021, Brown served as Economic Opportunity and Nutrition Assistance director. She led housing and shelter, food shelves, nutrition education, outreach, employment and training, community action, and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, and worked with her team to deliver programs and strategies designed for Tribal Nations, counties, and partner agencies to serve hundreds of thousands individuals and families with low incomes. Under her direction, she also helped expand services for the Indigenous people of Minnesota, including:

  • Supporting Bois Forte Band of Chippewa in becoming the first Tribal Nation in Minnesota to access The Emergency Food Assistance Program, which provides free food to food shelves in partnership with a food bank

  • Supporting the Lower Sioux Indian Community in becoming the first Tribal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Outreach grantee in Minnesota

  • Expanding Tribal Nation administration of SNAP services to Red Lake Nation and White Earth Nation.


Brown is a graduate of the University of Minnesota, Senior Leadership Institute at the Humphrey School of Public Affairs and Enterprise Learning & Development, and a fellow of the Equity Leaders in Action Network, BUILD Initiative. She has volunteered for numerous organizations, including Urban Ventures, where she served on the board of directors. She developed an Equity Council at a local middle school. She currently serves on the American Association of SNAP Directors Executive Advisory Council. At the department, she served as the agency’s representative on the Cultural and Ethnic Communities Leadership Council and currently serves on the Strategic Anti-racism Team Steering Committee and sponsors the Black Women Employee Resource Group.

Cedrick Frazier, Minnesota House of Representatives, is an attorney and politician serving in the Minnesota House of Representatives. A member of the Minnesota Democratic–Farmer-Labor Party (DFL), he represents District 43A, including New Hope and Crystal in Hennepin County.


After graduating from high school in Chicago, Illinois, Frazier moved to Minnesota to play NCAA football and run track at the University of Minnesota-Morris, graduating with a B.A. in psychology. Frazier went on to attend Minnesota State University, Mankato, where he served as a fellow with the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, graduating with an M.A. in urban studies with an emphasis in local government management. After earning his M.A., Frazier enrolled at William Mitchell College of Law. In law school, Frazier joined Phi Beta Sigma and clerked for the Hennepin County Public Defender's Office in Minneapolis and the League of Minnesota Cities in its Municipal Law Litigation Department. After graduating with a J.D. and passing the bar exam, he began his legal career as a public defender in Hennepin County. In 2008, Frazier accepted the Director of Equity and Diversity position for the Minneapolis Public School District and was later promoted to legal counsel for the district. After spending eight years in public education, Frazier joined the legal team at Education Minnesota, the state's largest labor union.

William Drew is the founder & owner of Mindful I Consulting LLC, as a Mindfulness-Based Consultant and Performance Coach.

William Drew, a lifelong meditator, William Drew, simply known as “Drew,” is the founder & owner of Mindful I Consulting LLC. As a Mindfulness-Based Consultant and Performance Coach, Drew focuses on seamlessly integrating Reflective Practices and Intentional Movement into the workday as foundational to Emotional Intelligence, Emotional Literacy, and Transformational Change. Through his work in schools, Drew has influenced policy, helped drive down behavior-based student disciplinary actions as well as increased learning time for classroom educators. Clients consistently note increased opportunities for physical movement during the workday, along with expanded “A role model is one who is aware that the babies are watching and acts accordingly.” A sense of psychological safety is necessary for clear, empathetic communication and equity, which drive innovation and excellence.


Since 2012, Drew has leveraged his experience in project management with Fortune 500 and Fortune 100 companies, along with over 20,000 hours of teaching yoga and mindfulness/meditation through his registered yoga school, Healing House Yoga LLC, to benefit those in education, government, health care, and for-profit business. As such, Healing House Yoga LLC and Mindful i Consulting LLC are recognized as Continuing Education providers by

  • Yoga Alliance

  • Board of Social Workers (MN)

  • Board of School Administrators (MN).


Drew’s work has allowed him to present the benefits of Reflective Practices and Intentional Movement to school districts, government organizations, community/professional & trade organizations, small and medium-sized businesses, as well as medium and large-sized insurance & health care providers. When not writing or training others on Mindfulness/Mindful Movement, Drew is practicing.

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Autumn Mason, Doula, Parent Educator, and Peer Support Professional
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Tierre Caldwell, Parent Educator, Peer Support Professional and with the Minnesota Prison Doula Project

Autumn Mason, is a lifelong Rondo community member who has experienced the systemic impacts on the black family both personally and professionally. Autumn is a Doula, Parent Educator, and Peer Support Professional supporting Justice-Impacted families with the MN Prison Doula Project of Ostara Initiative. Autumn also partners with community organizations such as the Black Birthing Consortium and African

American Babies Coalition to identify community frameworks, resources, and supportive programming needed to empower BIPOC and systems-impacted families. Her goal is to disrupt generational patterns of trauma and separation by creating lasting, systemic change in the communities she is involved in.


Tierre Caldwell serves as a Parent Educator and Peer Support Professional with the Minnesota Prison Doula Project, where he also holds the role of Director of Reentry Services. In this capacity, he educates system-involved parents and youth both inside and outside Minnesota Correctional Facilities, prioritizing family reunification and transformative leadership. Caldwell's pioneering approach, toward dual parenting systems and cultivating healthy relationships underscores his advocacy for fathers' rights and unwavering commitment to catalyzing profound change. His efforts extend to advocacy, fostering employment skills, conflict resolution, and facilitating successful reintegration into society, all fueled by a deep dedication to humanity and redemption.

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Richard Smith is a healing strategist and nationally recognized expert on trauma and healing for survivors of interpersonal and systemic violence.

Richard Smith (he/him) is a healing strategist and nationally recognized expert on trauma and healing for survivors of interpersonal and systemic violence. With over two decades of experience developing and leading community-based programs, Richard has helped organizations throughout the country build their capacity to heal and empower BIPOC folks and marginalized communities.


Richard has guest lectured at numerous colleges and universities on issues such as systemic racism, mass incarceration, and trauma and healing. A sought-after keynote and plenary speaker for national victim services, restorative justice, and criminal justice conferences, Richard previously served as the National Director of United for Healing Equity at Common Justice, where he led their national policy and organizing work.


Richard is the co-founder of Alignmeant Global LLC., a social enterprise dedicated to cultivating cultural reclamation, restorative practices, healing justice, and system reform. He is also the founder of Divine Masculinity Aspirational Apparel, a brand promoting positive expressions of masculinity, personal growth, and empowerment through clothing and accessories designed to inspire and uplift.


Richard is the host of the Just Healing Podcast, which takes a deep-dive into the diverse range of perspectives and personal stories about the social and cultural factors that impact healing for male survivors. Each episode explores the intersectional ways that trauma and healing are impacted by racial and gender identities, socioeconomic status, oppression, and white supremacy, emphasizing that sexual trauma does not exist in a bubble, and neither should healing.


He holds a master's degree in Africana Studies from the University at Albany and is currently a doctoral candidate at SUNY Albany's School of Social Welfare. His research focuses on the intersection of the trauma-to-prison pipeline and male survivorship of childhood sexual abuse. A Robert Wood Johnson Forward Promise Fellowship for Leadership Fellow, Richard is the proud father of Kaden and Kaleb. As a descendant of the Gullah Geechee people, he has committed his life to honor his ancestors' legacy of resistance and the liberation of Africans in the diaspora.

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Joseph S Bard, Radio Host, Artist and Community Facilitator

Joseph S Bard, for over 25 years, aka Drunken Monkee, is considered to be one of the most influential Hip-hop characters to come out of Chicago, Illinois, and the Midwest United States. Owing his stage name to the HipHop influence of Shaw Brothers-produced Kung-Fu action movies of the 1970s & 1980s, along with the seminal cultural influence of the Wu-Tang Clan in the 1990s, Joseph has been recognized for his energetic and creative live shows and events. Joseph is known for his unforgettable live performances and his freedom to approach all genres of music and performance art. Joseph's repertoire extends from HipHop, experimental, and deep house to nu-wave and punk rock.


Through his onstage persona, Joseph has opened for a "Who's Who" of hip-hop cultural titans, including The Last Poets, Erykah Badu, Redman & Method Man, and Nuyorican Poets Café. With a heart for community, Joseph continues to serve as a mentor in the Performing Arts space, as he has cooperated with Freedom School and After School Matters over the last two-plus decades in spaces such as Chicago Public Schools.


Currently, as Drunken Monkee, Joseph appears as a full-time radio personality on Tweak Central Lounge Radio. Airing weekly, as it has for over 12 years, Tweak Central Lounge is accessible live online and is broadcast in Chicago, Las Vegas, and Minneapolis. Playing the best in feel-good music from artists, local and around the world, as well as hosting live interviews, Tweak Central Lounge provides a safe space for listeners and guests to check out the widest variety of feel-good music and topics ranging from mental wellness & Self-Discovery to news & information.

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Mujasi and Ayolanda Bandele are family life educators and researchers in the field of family science.

Mujasi and Ayolanda Bandele are family life educators and researchers in the field of family science. The husband and wife partners are the co-founders of Black Family Blueprint, a coaching and consulting group focused on activating historically black families to employ strategies that strengthen parenting, support healthy intimate relationships, and increase the collective capacity to build social capital. They provide professional development opportunities for people who work within black family systems and offer workshops for black families. Their consulting practice is rooted in over 15 years of professional family development, adjacent to their family science degrees from Concordia University.


Mujasi, the Director of Research and Curriculum Design, accesses current research theory and concepts to inform best practices in family development while Ayolanda, the Director of Educational Innovation and Community Engagement, creates effective education tools to support the health of Black families.

“You don’t have to be a man to fight for freedom.

All you have to do is to be an intelligent human being.” — Malcolm X

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