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My Brother’s Keeper Alliance inaugural Town Hall featuring Common

Artist, actor, and activist Common talks to a man with a deep skin tone at a prison.

After an incredibly powerful and thought-provoking Town Hall conversation with Common, , MBKA advisory council chair, Broderick Johnson, and executive director of MBK Alliance, Michael Smith, sent the note below to everyone who tuned in. You can check out a recording of the Town Hall below.

Thank you for participating in the My Brother's Keeper Alliance Town Hall—we hope you enjoyed the conversation.

From award-winning artist Common's work with Imagine Justice to Regent Young and Dr. Alston's statewide effort to improve life outcomes for boys and young men of color in New York, we could not be more proud of the efforts underway to expand opportunity and reduce barriers for boys and young men who are often left behind.

You can watch a recording of the Town Hall below.

MBKA Town Hall with Common

Imagine Justice

Imagine Justice is a new nonprofit organization founded by Academy Award-, Emmy Award-, and Grammy Award-Winning artist and activist Common. The organization works on a variety of different issues, including criminal justice reform, community and civic engagement, social perception, and narrative change. As mentioned during the Town Hall, Imagine Justice is centered at the intersection of art and activism and dedicated to leveraging the power of art to advocate for the most marginalized people in society, to fight for justice and equality, and to stand united against injustice wherever it appears.

MBK New York State

Lester Young, New York State Regent, and Dr. Anael Alston, Assistant Commissioner for the Office of Access, Equity, and Community Engagement Services at the New York State Education Department, shared stories about how New York's My Brother's Keeper initiative is helping improve outcomes for boys and young men of color. In New York, MBK has become a movement across the state, growing to include 22 member communities.

You can learn more about this work here. (Opens in a new tab) To connect with Regent Young or Dr. Alston, please email [email protected]. (Opens in a new tab)

MBK Alliance Team Updates

For boys and young men of color to succeed, they need safe and supportive communities. As an initiative of the Obama Foundation, MBK Alliance is working to bring the right people, resources, and solutions to this challenge.

MBK Alliance will play three key roles to achieve impact:

  1. Accelerate Impact in Communities

  2. Mobilize Citizens and Institutions

  3. Promote What Works

In the months and years to come, you will see many more activities from the MBKA team, including greater engagement with MBK Communities.

Feedback for Future Town Halls

We plan to host additional Town Hall meetings quarterly and want to hear feedback from you on topics you'd like us to cover and individuals you'd like to hear from. To help guide our future Town Halls, please reach out to us here. (Opens in a new tab)

Thank you for your service, partnership, and relentless pursuit of equity and opportunity for our boys and young men of color.

In partnership,

Broderick Johnson Chair, MBKA Advisory Council and Michael Smith Executive Director, MBK Alliance