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Racism and the Economy: Focus on Housing

March 1, 2021
2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. ET | 1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. CT
Virtual video event presented by all 12 District Banks of the Federal Reserve System

Racism and the Economy: Focus on Housing

The fourth installment of our virtual event series is focused on structural racism in our housing markets and its impact on economic outcomes for all Americans. Our keynote speakers will outline the historical and contemporary context of how racism, racial exclusion, and predatory inclusion have limited housing opportunities and wealth-building for communities of color. Leaders from the public, nonprofit, and academic sectors will then present policy proposals for dismantling the deep inequities in housing market valuation, mortgage lending, and patterns of housing development. These proposals will kick-start a wide-ranging conversation among researchers, policymakers, and community leaders who are committed to eliminating racial disparities in housing opportunity.

Keynote speakers

Additional speakers

  • Priscilla Almodovar, President and CEO, Enterprise Community Partners
  • Raphael Bostic, President, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta
  • Tane Danger, Host, Theater of Public Policy
  • Bambie Hayes-Brown, President and CEO, Georgia ACT
  • Junia Howell, Assistant Professor, University of Pittsburgh
  • Neel Kashkari, President, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis
  • Loretta Mester, President, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland
  • Bill Rogers, President and COO, Truist Bank
  • Amy Scott, Senior Correspondent, Marketplace
  • Robin Rue Simmons, Alderman, 5th Ward, City of Evanston, Illinois
  • Scott Wiener, Senator, District 11, California

Event Details

2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. ET | 1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. CT
Virtual video event presented by all 12 District Banks of the Federal Reserve System

Additional Resources

We have curated a collection of additional resources that focus on the topics of racism and its effects on housing.

Expansion of New Law in Southeast May Stave Off Black Land Loss

Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta

Systemic racism haunts homeownership rates in Minnesota: Households of color lag White households in homeownership

Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis

Barriers and opportunities in the housing voucher program: the importance of race in the housing search process

Federal Reserve Bank of Boston

Explore the full resource list ›

Event Agenda

Monday, March 1, 2021

2:00 p.m. – 2:05 p.m. ET Introduction & Opening Remarks

Raphael Bostic, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta

2:05 p.m. – 2:35 p.m. ET Keynote Conversation

Andre M. Perry, Metropolitan Policy Program, Brookings Institution
Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, Department of African-American Studies, Princeton University

Raphael Bostic, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta

2:35 p.m. – 2:55 p.m. ET Proposal Presentations

Eliminate single-family zoning to expand housing supply
Scott Wiener, California Senate

Eliminate systemic racism in appraisals
Junia Howell, University of Pittsburgh

Offering restorative housing reparations
Robin Rue Simmons, Evanston, Illinois, City Council

Amy Scott, Marketplace

2:55 p.m. – 3:15 p.m. ET Respondent Panel

Bambie Hayes-Brown (housing advocacy), Georgia ACT
Priscilla Almodovar (community development/CDFI), Enterprise Community Partners
Bill Rogers (traditional banking), Truist Bank

Amy Scott, Marketplace

3:15 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. ET Proposer & Respondent Panel Discussion

Amy Scott, Marketplace

3:30 p.m. – 3:40 p.m. ET Moderated Conversation with Keynote Speakers

Andre M. Perry, Metropolitan Policy Program, Brookings Institution
Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, Department of African-American Studies, Princeton University

Neel Kashkari, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis

3:40 p.m. – 3:59 p.m. ET Reflections on the Event

Raphael Bostic, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta
Neel Kashkari, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis
Loretta Mester, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland

Tane Danger, Theater of Public Policy

3:59 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. ET Closing Remarks

Neel Kashkari, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis

About the series

Understanding the implications of structural racism in America’s economy and advancing actions to improve economic outcomes for all.

Racism forms the foundation of inequality in our society. It limits opportunity for people of color and threatens the health of our economy. While the global pandemic has intensified racial and economic disparities, the killing of George Floyd has galvanized people from all walks of life to address the systems and structures that enable and perpetuate these outcomes.

Hosted by all 12 District Banks of the U.S. Federal Reserve System, “Racism and the Economy” is a virtual series that brings together community, business, and academic leaders to examine the economic impact of racism and advance bold ideas and concrete actions to achieve an economy that makes opportunity available to everyone.

Presenter Information

Priscilla Almodovar President and CEO, Enterprise Community Partners

Priscilla Almodovar is the president and chief executive officer of Enterprise Community Partners, a national affordable housing nonprofit on a mission to make home and community places of pride, power, and belonging for all. Enterprise operates the only social enterprise designed to address America’s affordable housing crisis from every angle—as lender, investor, and asset manager of affordable rental homes; funder and adviser to community organizations and government agencies; advocate for nonpartisan housing policy; and owner-operator. From 2010 to 2019, Almodovar was a managing director at JPMorgan Chase, where she led two national real estate businesses for their commercial bank in commercial real estate and community development. Previously, she was the president and chief executive officer of New York state’s housing finance and mortgage agencies and co-chaired the New York State Health Innovation Council, an advisory body of the New York State Department of Health.

Tane Danger Host, Theater of Public Policy

Tane Danger is an emcee, comedian, teacher, and speaker. He is best known as the host of the nationally renowned, civics-inspired improvisation comedy show, “The Theater of Public Policy.” At each show, he interviews newsmakers, policymakers, and big thinkers on issues ranging from race in education to the farm bill.

In addition to performing and directing, he regularly gives keynote talks and leads workshops. He uses improv as a way to get leaders to think about and practice communication, collaboration, and creativity. He is also a regular on Twin Cities public television’s weekly public affairs program, Almanac.

In 2014, Danger won a fellowship from the St. Paul-based Bush Foundation, which helped him earn a master of public policy degree from the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey School of Public Affairs.

Bambie Hayes-Brown President and CEO, Georgia ACT

Bambie Hayes-Brown is the CEO of Georgia Advancing Communities Together, Inc., a statewide membership organization of housing and community development agencies. She has 24 years’ experience in rural and urban housing, and community and economic development. She secured a rural empowerment zone designation resulting in a $20 million investment in Southwest Georgia. Hayes-Brown is a registered lobbyist, real estate broker, and certified economic development finance professional, and she co-chairs the HouseATL Policy Committee. She serves on the board of directors of the National Low Income Housing Coalition, Up for Growth, NAACP DeKalb County Branch, and the ATL Airport Chamber of Commerce and on numerous advisory committees, including for the Enterprise Community Partners Southeast, Housing Justice League, and Cadence Bank. Hayes-Brown is a native of rural Georgia and holds a bachelor’s degree in business management, an MBA, a Th.D., and a Ph.D. in biblical studies.

Junia Howell

Junia Howell Assistant Professor, University of Pittsburgh

Junia Howell is an assistant professor of sociology at the University of Pittsburgh. Her research investigates how local and national policies perpetuate racial and socioeconomic inequality. Specifically, she applies critical race theory to urban sociological investigations of home appraisals, neighborhood effects, residential segregation, and disaster response. Her recent academic publications have appeared in Social Problems, Social Forces, Urban Studies, Sociological Quarterly, Ethnic and Racial Studies, Sociology of Race and Ethnicity, Population and Environment, Sociology Compass, Socius, Phylon, and Context. Her work has been featured in various news outlets, including NPR, The Atlantic, and the New York Times.

Andre Perry Senior Fellow, Metropolitan Policy Program, Brookings Institution

Andre Perry is a senior fellow in the Metropolitan Policy Program at the Brookings Institution and a scholar-in-residence at American University. He is the author of Know Your Price: Valuing Black Lives and Property in America’s Black Cities. A nationally known and respected commentator on race, structural inequality, and education, Perry is a regular contributor to MSNBC and has been published by the New York Times, The Nation, the Washington Post,, and His scholarship has been featured on HBO, ABC, CNN, PBS, National Public Radio, NBC, and in the Wall Street Journal. His research focuses on race and structural inequality, education, and economic inclusion. Perry’s recent scholarship at Brookings has analyzed Black-majority cities and institutions in America, focusing on valuable assets worthy of increased investment.

Bill Rogers President and COO, Truist Bank

William H. Rogers Jr. (Bill) is president and chief operating officer of Truist Financial Corporation, a purpose-driven financial services organization committed to inspiring and building better lives and communities. He assumed this position in December 2019, upon the closing of the merger of equals between BB&T Corporation and SunTrust Banks Inc.

Prior to the merger, Rogers served as Truist predecessor SunTrust Bank’s chairman and CEO since January 2012, after having been appointed president and CEO in June 2011. He was named chief operating officer in 2010 and president in 2008. Rogers held increasingly senior positions, including roles in corporate and commercial banking, corporate finance, and private wealth management after joining SunTrust in 1980.

A champion for philanthropy and volunteerism, Rogers serves on boards for a number of local and national organizations. The North Carolina native earned his bachelor’s degree from UNC-Chapel Hill and an MBA from Georgia State University.

Amy Scott

Amy Scott Senior Correspondent, Marketplace

Amy Scott is a senior correspondent for Marketplace, public radio’s suite of business and economics shows, where she covers housing and the economy and frequently fills in as a host. From 2010 to 2018, she led Marketplace’s education coverage, earning Gracie Awards in 2014 and 2013 and an Edward R. Murrow Award in 2012.

In 2015, Scott completed the independent documentary film OYLER, about a Cincinnati public school fighting to break the cycle of poverty in its traditionally Urban Appalachian neighborhood. From 2003 to 2010, she reported from Marketplace’s New York bureau, where she focused on the culture of Wall Street and became bureau chief in 2008.

Before joining Marketplace in 2001, she worked as a reporter in Dillingham, Alaska. She’s now based in Baltimore.

Robin Rue Simmons Alderman, 5th Ward, City of Evanston, Illinois

Robin Rue Simmons began her career 22 years ago, when she launched her first business as a real estate broker. Troubled by the wealth disparities in urban communities, she has helped young adults build wealth early through homeownership. Throughout her career, she has launched and operated multiple businesses and has developed dozens of affordable homes. Known for her “solutions only” approach in service and business, Simmons is currently serving as the director of innovation and outreach at Sunshine Enterprises, which has supported more than 1,000 neighborhood entrepreneurs. She also serves as chief strategist at Ujima Solutions Group. In 2017, Simmons was elected 5th Ward alderman for the City of Evanston. Since taking office, she has prioritized improving the lived experience and expanding opportunities for Black residents. Most notably, she led the passing of the nation’s first reparations program, funded by the first $10 million of Adult Use Cannabis sales tax revenue.

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor Assistant Professor, Department of African-American Studies, Princeton University

Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor is an assistant professor in the Department of African-American Studies at Princeton University. She is the author of Race for Profit: How Banks and the Real Estate Industry Undermined Black Homeownership, published in 2019 by the University of North Carolina Press, longlisted for a National Book Award for nonfiction, and a 2020 finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for history. Taylor’s book From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation won the Lannan Cultural Freedom Award for an Especially Notable Book in 2016. She is also editor of How We Get Free: Black Feminism and the Combahee River Collective, which won the Lambda Literary Award for LGBTQ nonfiction in 2018. Taylor is a contributing writer for The New Yorker.

Scott Wiener

Scott Wiener Senator, District 11, California

Scott Wiener represents San Francisco and northern San Mateo County in the California State Senate. Elected in 2016, Wiener focuses extensively on housing, transportation, civil rights, criminal justice reform, clean energy, and alleviating poverty. He chairs the Senate Housing Committee and is vice chair of the California Legislative Jewish Caucus. He is the immediate past chair of the California Legislative LGBTQ Caucus. Before his election to the Senate, he served as a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. He also chaired the San Francisco County Transportation Authority. Before taking public office, he practiced law for 15 years, including nearly a decade as a deputy city attorney in the San Francisco City Attorney’s Office. He also served in a number of community leadership roles, including as co-chair of the San Francisco LGBT Community Center and on the national board of directors of the Human Rights Campaign. Wiener has lived in San Francisco’s Castro neighborhood since 1997. He received degrees from Duke University and Harvard Law School and was a Fulbright scholar in Santiago, Chile.