Facing Race: A National Conference in St. Louis, MO — November 20-22, 2024

Zachary Norris

Executive Director | Ella Baker Center for Human Rights

Zachary Norris is the Executive Director of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights and a former director of our Books Not Bars campaign. Prior to rejoining the organization, Zachary co-founded and co-directed Justice for Families, a national alliance of family-driven organizations working to end our nation’s youth incarceration epidemic.

Zachary is a loving husband and dedicated father of two bright daughters, whom he is raising in his hometown of Oakland, California.

Presentations from Facing Race 2016

Putting Race at the Center of the Next Economy

We are witnessing the early stages of the eventual decline of capitalism. As income inequality continues to rise and climate change progresses we must ask ourselves "what will take the place of capitalism in our next economy?" Movement Strategy Center's Next Economy program is rooted in placing racial justice and climate resilience at the center of our next economy. To that end, there are a number of projects underway across the country and around the world that stand as hopeful examples of what it looks like to have social justice values guide our community development projects designed to bring about equity, prosperity and resilience.

Restore Oakland is a visionary joint initiative of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights and Restaurant Opportunities Centers, founded on the principles of restorative economics and restorative justice as a strategy for building whole and healed communities. Lifting up Restore Oakland as an innovative example of the next economy, come and participate in an interactive session as we collectively explore our personal beliefs and feelings around finance, capital and the economy and engage in generative group activities and discussion to develop our own solutions and models for creating the next economy rooted in racial, social, economic and environmental justice.

Speakers: Nwamaka Agbo, Zachary Norris

United for Human Dignity: Fighting the Mass Criminalization of our People

Casting our people as criminals is a central tactic in stripping us of our humanity, dignity and peace. Recent victories in drug sentencing, closing private federal prisons, and exposing the harm of immigrant detention are encouraging, but much more remains to be done. In this panel and discussion, we will learn how different communities of color are fighting mass incarceration, mass deportation and out-of-control policing, while moving new demands and solutions that unleash the power and potential of our communities.

Speakers: Liliana Segura, Zachary Norris, paulina helm-hernandez, Breon Wells

Presentations from Facing Race 2012

Campaign Weaving and Movement Building: Challenging the Incarceration Nation through Creative Action

Across the country organizers and advocates are leading campaigns to challenge the impacts of mass detention/incarceration. From death penalty abolition to ending the high cost of phone calls, and mandatory detention--these organizations are using creative actions, first voice media and innovative policy advocacy to bring the media policy, immigrant rights and criminal justice sectors together to fight the profiteering in mass incarceration.

Speakers: Cherrell Brown, Steven Renderos, Silky Shah, Zachary Norris