Saturday, September 25, 2021 at 3:00-5:00 PM

Join Charlotte Street for the first Because of This Panel Discussion: Black + Indigenous Histories and Futures in the Midwest! As a part of the year-long series, Because of This, curator Mary Lawson has organized two panel discussions that will explore why Black and Indigenous peoples choose to make the Midwest their creative home. Why do those with roots in the Midwest choose to leave for other creative communities? Speakers will center and affirm the contributions of past, present, and future of Black and Indigenous artists, historians, designers, developers, musicians, and poets in the Midwest.

The main portion of this panel discussion will focus on the progress, newer developments, and gentrification of Midwestern cities. Panelists invite audiences to share what is working, what needs more attention, and what visions do communities to have for a better quality of life for all residents in the places we call home.


Jewel Rodgers


Emmanuel Cook Jr.
Triveece Penelton
Sarah Rowe
Alex Kimball Williams



Jewel Rodgers is a budding real estate developer committed to ethically built communities. Before earning her Master’s in Real Estate Development from New York University, she contributed as a community builder in Lincoln, Nebraska, while earning a Bachelor’s in Business Management, minoring in Community and Regional Planning. Then, and now, she continues to serve as a public speaker, spoken word poet, and conversation facilitator native to North Omaha, Nebraska. 


Emmanuel Cook is a place-maker and urban planner who works to develop vibrant places and more livable built environments. Manne works closely with local artists and grassroots organizations to produce events, exhibitions, and creative place based projects. He is the project lead for Spark CDI and recently worked for the City of Omaha planning department where he led the Forever North Strategy and specialized in planning for people-oriented, human-scale development for the neighborhood planning section.



Trivecee Penelton is a city planner and public involvement innovator. She is also the creator of the Digicate® software application for community engagement. Triveece works with community organizations and government agencies. Her projects blend community planning with intensive public engagement, education, information sharing, messaging, and branding. Her strengths lie in developing and executing planning/engagement processes that use creative and innovative tools. Triveece is an Inaugural Steering Committee Member of Planning for Health Equity, Advocacy & Leadership (PHEAL) and an alumna of the Racial Equity Institute. In addition, her work has won the APWA National Exceptional Performance Award – Journalism, MOVITE Excellence in Transportation Achievement Award, WTS Rosa Parks Diversity Leadership Award, and a NOMA NAACP Seed Award for Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in Design. Prior to joining Vireo, Triveece served as a long-range planner with Kansas City, Missouri’s Planning and Development Department in its Planning, Preservation and Urban Design Division. Her work involved detailed analysis of changing community issues and urban design guideline implementation.

Sarah Rowe is a multidisciplinary artist based in Omaha, NE. Her work opens cross cultural dialogues by utilizing methods of painting, sculpture, fiber arts, performance, and Native American ceremony in unconventional ways. Rowe holds a BA in Studio Art from Webster University, St. Louis, MO. She is of Lakota and Ponca descent.



Alex Kimball Williams is a multicultural artivist (artist + activist), musician, writer, & community organizer. Their work focuses on ethnopolitics, medical activism, & environmentalism. Kimball Williams co-founded B.L.A.C.K. Lawrence (Black Literature & Arts Collective of Kansas) & currently performs a project titled Bad Alaskan, featuring electronic music with Indigenous dance & meditative elements.

Event Details

Saturday, September 25 at 3:00-5:00 PM




Next Event

2024-2025 Crossroads Artboards Info Session


Tuesday, December 19 from 6:00-7:00 PM

Charlotte Street Kemper Library (3333 Wyoming St)
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