We affirm that race matters, history matters, inclusion matters
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No Matter Who Wins This Election...

….the Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE) will continue to sustain and expand the network that is building the capacity, supportive relationships, and leadership necessary to ensure our Movement achieves its dream of an inclusive, multi-racial American democracy.  In this critical moment for our democracy, we affirm these commitments to you, and to all people living in the United States.   

We affirm that: 

  • Race matters – although tension, anxiety and discomfort are sometimes a part of conversations about race, we know we must explicitly name race as a factor that still determines how well we do in American society.  Not discussing race does not make racism go away.  Talking about race as a factor that influences our life outcomes does not drive us apart.  Talking about race will keep us focused on solutions that benefit all of us and bring us together  We cannot have equity for all without achieving racial equity. 
  • History matters – We acknowledge that government has a historical legacy of enforcing laws that created racial inequity.  This history created the racial disparities that exist in every aspect of American life today.  And government has the capacity and obligation to correct this history.  
  • Inclusion matters – people who are negatively impacted by institutional actions have a right to participate in designing the solutions intended to benefit them.  Communities of color that are most negatively impacted by racial inequity should be included in and benefit from all government decisions impacting their lives. 
  • Leadership matters – Transforming our systems towards greater racial equity requires consistent and courageous leadership. There is a role for elected, appointed and community-based leadership to advance racial equity, as well as the development of emerging leadership. 
  • Movement matters – Racial inequities have been intentionally created and maintained over an extended period of time. They will not disappear on their own. To advance racial equity, we must organize within government and across other sectors, always putting community at the center. We believe that a racial equity movement must build and expand the engagement of governmental jurisdictions across the country.  
  • Power matters – Power has often been used to perpetuate inequities. We believe in intentionally examining, considering, negotiating, claiming and exercising power that advances racial equity. 
  • Learning matters – Our network and this movement is fueled by continuous, intentional learning and feedback. 

YOU matter. GARE will continue to support those who are working to ensure that the movement for racial justice continues to grow and thrive.  No matter what. 

Gordon F. Goodwin 
GARE Director  

#CityAccelerator Cities and Businesses of Color Guide    

The economic fallout that accompanied Covid-19 pandemic has disproportionately impacted small businesses, especially businesses owned by people of color. Cities can play an active role in supporting entrepreneurs of color who are shouldering the economic burden of the Covid-19.
Our newly released guide, Cities and Businesses of Color: A Guide to Economic Growth, includes concrete tools and approaches to inclusive economic growth and recovery from Covid-19. With case studies from City Accelerator cities-- Newark, El Paso, Atlanta, Rochester, and Long Beach-- the guide provides concrete examples of how cities have played an active role in bolstering businesses owned by people of color. Click here to download the guide.


View the webinar on-demand that occurred in partnership with Governing on Tuesday, October 27 at 1:30pm ET where representatives from City Accelerator cities of El Paso, Long Beach, and Rochester, and cohort lead, Rodrick Miller, shared lessons and takeaways from their experience in the cohort. Join us to learn how they are thinking about driving local economic opportunity and supporting businesses owned by people of color through Covid-19. 
“It is in a city’s best interest to promote growth of businesses owned by people of color, as cities prosper when their residents do.” - Rodrick Miller, City Accelerator cohort lead and author of Cities and Businesses of Color: A Guide to Economic Growth

New Member Spotlight


District of Columbia

At the DC Department of Human Services, we believe that sustainable organizational transformation is critical to creating new ways of doing and being. With that in mind, we are establishing the DHS Racial and Social Justice Change Team, who will dedicate a portion of their working hours to leading the design, coordination and organizing of our agency’s racial and social equity framework to accomplish equitable systems change. The Change Team will be representative of DHS employees across departments, titles, race, gender, tenure, education level, etc. They will model a structure that is inclusive and draws on the experience and wisdom of employees and customers to implement meaningful change.

Change Team representatives will be selected either by oneself or others. There will then be a panel interview to make final selections. DHS employees who are not selected for the Change Team will be given opportunities to engage in racial and social justice efforts across the agency in other ways, including affinity groups, various training opportunities, and more.

The Change Team will have several key functions which will ultimately lead to outputs that will be reflected both internally in the experiences of our employees and externally in the services we provide to and ways we interact with the community. Key functions of the team include cultivating and developing new racial equity leadership and active community engagement; collecting and analyzing data for documenting, measuring and evaluating progress; capacity-building to disseminate learning, skills and tools across the agency; and communicating about and championing racial and social justice.

The Change Team, which consists of both formal and informal leaders, is officially authorized to play a leading role in operationalizing change and will assess, analyze and redesign many functions of DHS, including Human Resources Practices, Learning and Development, Workplace Culture, Employee Wellness and more. Ultimately, the Change Team is a pathway for the Department of Human Services to intentionally institutionalize spending energy, time, and resources on what matters.

Growth in the Network

More and more jurisdictions choose to direct their focus on this work     

Since June of 2020, 65 new jurisdictions spread across six time zones have joined the GARE Network and made a commitment to advancing racial equity across the breadth and depth of their jurisdiction.

From engaging in working groups, attending rapid-response workshops, participating in learning communities and implementation groups, collaborating through peer-to-peer engagement based on topic-area expertise, as well as taking advantage of the new GARE Foundations offering - new members continue to grow and enrich the entire GARE network.

We are so grateful for the continued dedication of jurisdictions to push for systemic change during these challenging times and we are energized by the continued applications of new jurisdictions across the nation.

OSF Leadership in Government Fellowship now recruiting for 2021

Open Society Foundation’s Leadership in Government Fellowship program  launched its recruitment for its 2021 cohort. The fellowship is an opportunity for senior-level government officials and staff in the United States or its territories who have recently left public service and share OSF’s commitment to advancing open society in America. This program started in 2016 and you can read more here about the 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020  fellows. The deadline to apply is November 23.
Would you mind forwarding this opportunity on to any of your contacts you think may be interested?  
By way of background, OSF awards individual grants to people who have played a significant role in advancing social change from within government in the United States or its territories at the city, county, state, federal or tribal levels. OSF is looking for public-sector leaders interested in using this fellowship opportunity to reflect on their time in government and to undertake a project that advances policy ideas and inserts their unique perspectives about driving change from within government into the public dialogue.
A project might identify a problem in the implementation of policy that has yet to be fully recognized or discussed, offer new strategies on how to work with government and advocate for policy change, or highlight a different approach for legislative or executive action. OSF strongly encourages applications for projects that offer unique insights and perspective into how government implements programs and policies with an eye towards their effect on low-income communities, communities of color, immigrants, refugees, asylum-seekers, LGBTQ, women, and those otherwise historically marginalized communities in the United States and its territories. In addition, this year, OSF asks that applicants demonstrate how their expertise and proposed fellowship work is connected to the unprecedented challenges and opportunities facing the United States or its territories today, in particular related the COVID-19 pandemic and/or the transformational moment for racial justice.
I would be incredibly grateful if you could share the guidelines and application link with your colleagues and networks.  This link provides greater detail on the fellowship project and how to apply. Again, applications are due November 23, 2020.

Upcoming GARE Events

Midwest Region Drop-In Hours

When:  Nov 17, 2020 from 9:30 AM to 11:00 AM (CT)
These sessions are intended as an informal space for generative conversations, for new members to connect with those who have been part of GARE for some time, and to build our regional network. Bring your coffee or tea!

GARE Monthly Membership Connection

When:  Nov 30, 2020 from 3:00 PM to 4:30 PM (ET)
This connection is a membership benefit and we encourage ALL employees from GARE jurisdiction members to join!

GARE Informational Sessions

These Sessions are open to:
  • Anyone interested in learning more about GARE
  • Employees from a new GARE member jurisdiction
  • Employees from an existing GARE member jurisdiction

Every 1st THURSDAY of the Month (November 5, December 3)
To register for an info session on the 1st Thursday of every month, click here

Every 3rd TUESDAY of the month (November 17, December 15)
To register for an info session on the 3rd Tuesday of every month, click here

Please contact Ariana Flores with any questions at

Help us meet our goal of getting 1,000 organizations across the country to make a commitment to advancing racial equity!

Are you committed to Racial Equity?

Join Racial Equity Here, GARE's new, cross-sector platform to align efforts across the country! Racial Equity Here is a movement of jurisdictions, community groups, foundations, businesses and schools committed to three steps forward on racial equity: to LEARN, ACT, and PARTNER, with tools provided. 

For more information about our Racial Equity Here, Commit to Action site, or to join the more than 500 organizations that have committed to advancing racial equity, click here. 

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