Volunteers build understanding and deep relationships through learning community events.
Volunteers get to know one another, learn from nationally renowned speakers, engage in interfaith dialogue, and develop strategies to engage others in the work of creating real, systemic change in Greater Saint Paul.
2022 – 2023 Learning Community Events
Each of us makes thousands of small decisions every day. And some of us decide to create opportunity for others, over and over. We call such these people Opportunity Champions.
This year, Interfaith Action’s learning community events will put a spotlight on individuals who’ve dedicated their lives to creating opportunities for people around (and often beyond) St. Paul. They represent the ordinary and the extraordinary potential for all of us to create a more just community.
March 23, 2023: Spotlight on LaVon Lee
LaVon is the executive director/head of school at the Montessori American Indian Childcare Center. An enrolled member of the Oglala Lakota Nation – Pine Ridge, South Dakota, she is the current leadership guide at the Montessori American Indian Childcare Center. She served as executive director of the American Indian Family Center for ten years, worked with the St. Paul Foundation as the co-director of Supporting Diversity in Schools, and worked as program director at the Grotto Foundation, overseeing the Native Language Revitalization Initiative and the American Indian Empowerment Program. While at Grotto, she also founded the Tiwahe Foundation and served as its administrator.
January 26, 2023: Spotlight on Otis Zanders
We were thrilled to honor and learn from Otis Zanders, recently retired CEO of Ujamaa Place and lifelong opportunity champion! The conversation hosted by Interfaith Action’s Executive Director, Randi Ilyse Roth, included special remarks from civic leaders to honor Mr. Zanders’ impact in our community.
Ujamaa Place is a St. Paul-based non-profit that provides holistic transformation opportunities for young Black men experiencing inequity at the intersection of race and poverty, helping them achieve brotherhood, stability, and personal success.
Contact Phil Romine
Director, Opportunity Saint Paul, 651-661-9350
2021–2022 Learning Community Events
How are the Children? Impacts on Child Wellbeing and Mental Health in COVID
May 26, 2022
With Dr. Razaan Byrne, a pediatrics specialist on the pediatrics team at Children’s Minnesota, and, Dr. Sheldon Berkowitz, president of the Minnesota Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Watch the webinar
Navigating an Inhumane Human Services System
March 10, 2022
Author, poet, singer-songwriter, and poverty abolitionist Julia Dinsmore shared her story of navigating poverty in the Twin Cities and her experience with human services system.
November 11, 2021
Whitney Terrill from MN Interfaith Power and Light discussed the interconnectedness of environmental and racial justice and the impact it has on our communities.
Disparities in Mental Health
June 3, 2021
MayKao Y. Hang, D.P.A., Vice President, Strategic Initiatives and Founding Dean, Morrison Family College of Health, University of St. Thomas, discussed how to address complex community issues and promote equity for underserved communities.
Acknowledging and Celebrating Earth Day Interconnections for Environmental Justice with Michael Quinn Patton
April 22, 2021
Michael Quinn Patton, one of the leaders in the field of evaluation studies, discussed how environmental and climate issues have a disproportionate negative impact on communities of color. Watch the webinar
American Indian Land Issues: Obstacles and Strategies with Cris Stainbrook
March 4, 2021
The session continued a deep dive into rural racial justice issues. Cris Stainbrook, president of the Indian Land Tenure Foundation, explained the history and current issues surrounding American Indian land ownership. Watch the webinar
Interfaith Action of Greater Saint Paul
New mailing address:
1041 Grand Avenue, #312
Saint Paul, MN 55105