LA Convergence 2017

November 02, 2017 at 9am - 4pm
Los Angeles Theatre Center
514 S Spring St
Los Angeles, CA 90013
United States
Google map and directions

Will you come?

$125.00 One Entry to 2017 Convergence (New Membership - Organization, or Individual)
One Entry to 2017 Convergence
$75.00 Discounted Member Ticket (Org, Ind, ACTIVATE Alumni)
Discounted Member ticket



Each year, Arts for LA hosts a day of cross-sector dialogue and collaboration around issues facing Los Angeles County: the LA Convergence. Designed to challenge assumptions, explore new ideas, and identify potential solutions, the LA Convergence strengthens our ability to chart a path toward a prosperous, engaged, and creative region for all.  



Expanding Our R.E.A.C.H.

The theme for the 2017 LA Convergence is Expanding our R.E.A.C.H. In a year during which many communities are experiencing unprecedented discrimination, how do we expand our efforts to ignite grassroots and large scale change in our communities? As a catalyst for cross-sector conversations and collaboration, the 2017 LA Convergence will build upon the R.E.A.C.H. acronym (Revitalize, Educate, Activate, Connect and Heal) in order to spark solution-based conversations focused on the expansion beyond ourselves in order to advocate for collaborative change within our communities.



MELINA ABDULLAH is Professor and Chair of Pan-African Studies at California State University, Los Angeles. Dr. Abdullah earned her Ph.D. from the University of Southern California in Political Science and her B.A. from Howard University in African American Studies. She was appointed to the Los Angeles County Human Relations Commission in 2014 and is a recognized expert on race, gender, class, and social movements. Abdullah is the author of numerous articles and book chapters, with subjects ranging from political coalition building to womanist mothering. Professor Abdullah is a womanist scholar-activist, understanding the role that she plays in the academy as intrinsically linked to broader struggles for the liberation of oppressed people. Professor Abdullah is a leader in the fight for Ethnic Studies in the K-12 and university systems and was a part of the historic victory that made Ethnic Studies a requirement in the Los Angeles Unified School District, also serving on the Taskforce for the Advancement of Ethnic Studies for the California State University system. She was among the original group of organizers that convened to form Black Lives Matter and continues to serve as a Los Angeles chapter lead and contributes to the global leadership. She is co-host and co-producer of the weekly radio program Beautiful Struggle which airs on KPFK, part of the Pacifica radio network. Dr. Abdullah also serves on boards for the Black Community, Clergy and Labor Alliance (BCCLA), California Faculty Association-Los Angeles, Los Angeles African American Women’s Public Policy Institute, Los Angeles Community Action Network (LA-CAN), National Association for Ethnic Studies, the Reverence Project, and Strategic Concepts in Organizing and Policy Education (SCOPE). Melina is the recipient of many awards, most recently the 2017 Activist Award presented by the National Association for Ethnic Studies, the 2016 Racial Justice Award presented by the YWCA, 2016 Fannie Lou Hamer Award for outstanding community service presented by the Coalition of Mental Health Professionals, 2016 Fannie Lou Hamer Award presented by the National Conference of Black Political Scientists, 2016 Sacred Sistahs Award, 2016 California Teachers Association Human Rights Award, 2016 BCCLA Ella Baker Award, 2015 Freedom Now Award, and the 2015 Communitas Award. She was recognized by LA Weekly as one of the 10 most influential Los Angeles leaders, “Urban Girl of the Year” by 2UrbanGirls, and one of the 15 “Fiercest Sisters” of 2015 by Fierce. She has appeared on MSNBC, CNN, TV One, ABC, PBS, Revolt TV, KTLA, KCET, BET, Free Speech TV, and Al-Jazeera, and is featured in the films 13th, When Justice Isn’t Just, and Justice or Else. Melina is originally from Oakland, California. She is a single “soccer mama” of three children and resides in Mid-City Los Angeles.



*Subject to change  

9:00am - 

Registration Opens

  Coffee and Registration

10:00am - 

Welcome & Opening Plenary Keynote Address

11:00am - 


11:30am - 

Breakout Series #1

  Session 1: Revitalize: Collectivity & Community Trust
  Session 2: Educate: Investing in Our Youth
  Session 3: Activate: Local Empowerment

1:00pm - 


2:00pm - 

Breakout Series #2

  Session 1: Connect: Building Alliances & Connecting Our Stories
  Session 2: Heal: What Makes a "HEALTHY" Community?

3:30pm - 

Closing Reception



The theme for the 2016 LA Convergence was Amplifying Our Stories. In a year when some voices are silenced or not heard, many communities are turning to art to express and understand this difficult moment in our country. As a catalyst for cross-sector conversations and collaboration, the 2016 LA Convergence leveraged storytelling as a way to articulate problems as well as to envision solutions: