Welcome to the 2015 Gathering of Leaders

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

The "urgency of now" calls you to attend COSEBOC’s 2015 Gathering of Leaders. The recent deaths of Michael Brown and Tamir Rice remind us of the negative narrative that society has built around young men of color.  COSEBOC’s message that all young men of color can achieve academic success if the educators in their lives have the right tools is more important than ever.  The "urgency of now" is for educators and their allies to help young men of color realize this transformation. We must Be The Change. 

In 1968, Memphis sanitation workers fighting for respect, dignified treatment and fair compensation, held signs to their chest that read “I am a Man”.  Today our boys and young men of color hold invisible signs that ask us to recognize them for their talents, positive character traits, and determination to succeed in school and in life.  Turning legacy into a promise for the future, the 2015 Gathering of Leaders theme is I Am a Young Man: Honoring my Past, Celebrating My Present, and Anticipating My Future.  

This year’s Gathering is designed to make the qualities of our students visible to all, to strengthen our capacity to help our boys and young men of color manifest their affirmative identity, and to provide personal support during this particularly challenging time.  How do I need to change myself as part of making that change?  How can we as a collective movement of educators with allied stakeholders change the narrative?

The Gathering will feature innovative strategies from schools and educators demonstrating success, current research, and policies that are making a difference. Join us to cultivate your skill sets and access practical resources.  Join us to revitalize your network of support with educators nationwide who share your dedication and challenges.  Join us to renew your commitment to this work.

The 9th annual COSEBOC Gathering of Leaders will be held April 22-24, 2015 on the campus of the University of Memphis in Memphis, Tennessee, a beautiful city, rich in culture and history.  Memphis offers the National Civil Rights Museum, Beale Street and the home of the blues, the Center for Southern Folklore, and much more.  We thank the Memphis Design team, in advance, for their thoughtful preparation and planning. 

Online registration is now open. Register by March 1st to receive the early registration rate.

See you in Memphis!

Ron Walker