The Missouri Humanities partners with institutions and organizations to promote public dialogue through panels and open Q&A.

WAITLIST - registration

THIS EVENT IS AT CAPACITY! You can sign-up for our waitlist and open slots will be emailed to you if they become available-first come, first serve.


“A Path Forward: Racial History & Urban Renewal in Kansas City” – Lunch & Learn Program in partnership with American Public Square

DATE: Thursday, February 14, 2019

TIME: 11:00AM – 1:00PM

LOCATION: Kauffman Foundation Center, 4801 Rockhill Rd, Kansas City, MO 64110


This event provides a historic overview of Kansas City’s development as a culturally diverse Midwestern hub and will highlight challenges the city has endured in promoting the development of arts, education, and economic development in the urban core.

The program will feature a panel comprised of local scholars, historians, and urban development experts to discuss the complex nuances of Kansas City’s racial history as a major urban center.  Members of the public will gain knowledge on how the city has been shaped by westward expansion, the growth and development of localized art, urban flight, and the overall impact of economic development.






Michelle Tyrene Johnson is a Kansas City area native who covers race, identify, and culture as a reporter for KCUR 89 3, NPR’s member station. She is also a workplace diversity and inclusion facilitator, certified mediator, speaker, writer, and playwright, as well as a former employment attorney. Ms. Johnson, also has been the author of several columns and books on diversity, including “The Diversity Diva” column that ran in the Kansas City Star and the book “The Diversity Code: Unlock the Secrets to Making Differences Work in the Real World.” Ms. Johnson has spoken on diversity issues and conducted diversity workshops for several organizations, businesses and colleges across the country, including Wal-Mart Headquarters in Bentonville, Ark.; H&R Block, Hallmark Cards, Rockwell Automation and several federal, state and local municipalities.




Sandra I. Enríquez is a social historian of modern United States history with particular research and teaching interests in Chicanx and Latinx history, urban history, borderlands, social movements, and public history. She is currently working on a manuscript project tentatively titled ¡El Barrio No Se Vende!: Urban Redevelopment and Community-Controlled Preservation in El Paso, Texas, which examines grassroots preservation efforts to keep Mexican American neighborhoods from the bulldozer. Dr. Enríquez is the Director of the Public History Emphasis and supervises the Public History internship program. She is also an affiliated faculty member in the Latinx and Latin American Studies Program.

Dr. Enríquez is a native of Ciudad Juárez, México, and earned her Ph.D. from the University of Houston in 2016. She has served in a number of Public History initiatives both in and out of UMKC. Dr. Enríquez is the director of the Latinx KC Oral History Project and the co-editor of a forthcoming digital project on Kansas City activism. She was a co-curator for El Paso: The Other Side of the Mexican Revolution, and for Museo Urbano, a grassroots community-based museum that celebrates the history and heritage of ethnic Mexicans in El Paso. She also served as an oral historian for the Gulf Coast Food Project, and the Civil Rights in Black and Brown Oral History Project.



Damon Daniel is the President of AdHoc Group Against Crime, an organization that serves as the trusted bridge between the community and law enforcement. He answered the call to come to AdHoc in 2015. Mr. Daniel is a native of Kansas City, with a wide range of experience within the field of social justice that spans 20 years. He holds a degree in Urban Affairs from the University of Missouri Kansas City.

In 2016, former Missouri Governor Jay Nixon appointed Mr. Daniel to the 16th Circuit Judicial Commission. This commission helps fill judicial vacancies, pursuant to the Missouri Nonpartisan Court Plan, in Jackson County.

Damon can be heard every week night on Carter Broadcast station KPRS Hot 103 Jamz and bi-weekly on Gospel 1590 where he makes public service announcements about various public safety and social issues. He considers education, people power and faith to be powerful keys in unlocking the solutions for many of the issues facing today’s communities.



Matt Nugent is an architect at Gould Evans. He grew up in Kansas City and graduated from high school at Lincoln Prep. He and is family moved to the Squier Park neighborhood in 2011. Since then he has served as the president of the Squier Park Neighborhood Association, and served as a member of the Troost Coalition since its founding in 2012. As a member of the Coalition he helped lead the creation the Troost Overlay, and was responsible for design of the Overlay’s community engagement process.



Ms. Richardson oversees the day-to-day operations of the KC BizCare Office, the City’s Business Customer Service Center, a free business resource, advocacy and information center for new and existing businesses operating within Kansas City. Established in 2009, BizCare provides guidance and assistance for businesses navigating the City’s licensing, permitting and vendor approval processes. Her work also includes streamlining initiatives to remove barriers to entry and systemic issues that impede a business’s ability to grow in Kansas City. She is an advocate between businesses and City departments to coordinate business-related concerns. Her work is vital to the City’s goal of becoming the “Most Entrepreneurial City in America.” Nia started with the City in November of 2018.

In her own community, where she was born and raised, Nia has been very active on boards and commission, ballot issues, voting, professional development/networking, economic development and politics. Her biggest and most recent accomplishment as the former Board Chair for Blue Hills Community Services (5008 Prospect) is the merger with Swope Community Builders. The new entity is now called Community Builders of Kansas City and is the largest community development corporation in Kansas City. The CDC will provide housing and commercial development in and around the KC central city. Nia also work with the One City campaign to pass the 1/8 cent sales tax for economic development in the urban core, the first community lead tax initiative in the state of MO and maybe even the country. Nia lead a research initiative to assist the campaign in understanding the state statue and developed a utilization plan for the tax.