Jump to ULC Race and Social Equity Statement | Booklists

The library promotes racial and social equity. We encourage and facilitate access and information for all.

21-Day Challenge for Racial Equity & Social Justice

Virtual Author Events Share Insights Into Black History and Racial Equity

Ben Montgomery: Virtual Book Launch
A Shot in the Moonlight: How a Freed Slave and a Confederate Soldier Fought for Justice in the Jim Crow South

Pulitzer Prize finalist & author of “Grandma Gatewood’s Walk,” will launch his new book, “A Shot in the Moonlight” via Zoom.

A Shot in the Moonlight is the sensational true story of George Dinning, a freed slave. In 1899 Dinning joined forces with a Confederate war hero in search of justice in the Jim Crow south. For this event Montgomery will be joined by Anthony Denning Sr., the great-grandson of George Dinning.

Black Oscars: From Mammy to Minny, What the Academy Awards Tell Us About African Americans

Film representations of Black Americans reflect historical trends & impact audiences offscreen. The author of Black Oscars shares research & how to recognize racial patterns.

Dr. Frederick W. Gooding Jr. analyzed decades of Oscar nominations and winners for his book. For more than 90 years, Oscar winners have been considered the standard bearers of all things imaginable within American culture. Given the Oscars’ presence and popularity, it begs the question of what do these awards reflect and reinforce about larger society, particularly when it comes to the public participation of African Americans. In the meticulously-researched book, we see how the Oscars are an indispensable guide to understanding race in mainstream Hollywood.

ULC Race and Social Equity Statement

In the wake of recent events in cities around the country, it’s important to acknowledge the role of public libraries in facilitating racial and social justice in their communities. The Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library will continue to honor our commitment to ensure everyone is welcome, treated with respect, and has the opportunity to live their best lives through learning and literacy at their public library.

It’s also important to note this commitment is endorsed and led by the library’s leadership. In October 2017, the library’s Board of Trustees signed on to the following statement from the Urban Libraries Council (ULC). The Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library, along with many other nationally recognized libraries, is a member of the ULC.

— Gina Millsap, Chief Executive Officer

Racial Justice Book Club
Racial Justice Book Club
Virtual Events


As leaders of North America’s public libraries, we are committed to achieving racial and social equity by contributing to a more just society in which all community members can realize their full potential. Our libraries can help achieve true and sustained equity through an intentional, systemic and transformative library-community partnership. Our library systems are working to achieve equity in the communities we serve by:

  • Eliminating racial and social equity barriers in library programs, services, policies and practices
  • Creating and maintaining an environment of diversity, inclusion and respect both in our library systems and in all aspects of our community role
  • Ensuring that we are reaching and engaging disenfranchised people in the community and helping them express their voice
  • Serving as a convener and facilitator of conversations and partnerships to address community challenges
  • Being forthright on tough issues that are important to our communities

Libraries are trusted, venerable and enduring institutions, central to their communities and an essential participant in the movement for racial and social equity.


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