Toward One Wisconsin Conference
Conference Theme: Breaking Barriers, Building Bridges
October 12-13, 2021
Fully Virtual Conference

Three nationally acclaimed authors will headline the Toward One Wisconsin 2021 Conference, bringing their strong voices and crucial perspectives to address the vital and immediate issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Kao Kalia Yang, Dasha Kelly Hamilton, and Jelani Cobb will share their experiences in October for the third annual statewide conference, which focuses on prioritizing the work of diversity, equity, inclusion, and access throughout Wisconsin.

Kao Kalia Yang

Kao Kalia Yang is a Hmong-American author, filmmaker, teacher, and co-founder of Words Wanted, a company dedicated to helping immigrants with writing, translation, and business services.

Yang’s first book, “The Latehomecomer: A Hmong Family Memoir,” details her family’s move from the Ban Vinai Refugee Camp to Minnesota in 1987. “The Latehomecomer” was the winner of two Minnesota Book Awards, a finalist for the PEN USA Award, and was the first Hmong-authored book to gain national distribution from a literary press.

Dasha Kelly Hamilton

Dasha Kelly Hamilton is a writer, performance artist and creative change agent, applying the creative process to facilitate dialogues around human and social wellness. She currently serves as the Poet Laureate for the City of Milwaukee and the State of Wisconsin.

As an Arts Envoy for the U.S. Embassy, Kelly Hamilton facilitated community building initiatives in Botswana, Toronto, Mauritius, and Beirut. Her touring production, “Makin’ Cake,” engages communities in a forward dialogue on race, class and equity.

Jelani Cobb

Jelani Cobb is a New Yorker staff writer, FRONTLINE correspondent, and Columbia University’s Ira A. Lipman Professor of Journalism. Cobb’s writing on race, history, justice, and politics earned him the Hillman Prize of opinion and analysis journalism.

Cobb is featured prominently in Ava DuVernay’s 13th, the Oscar-nominated documentary about mass incarceration of black Americans and the Thirteenth Amendment.

About Toward One Wisconsin

Wherever you are on your Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) journey, there’s something for you at Toward One Wisconsin. Whether you’re just starting out and overwhelmed, or you’re a leading activist in your community, this conference will provide best practices, insights and implementation tools to help you take the next steps. Across all sectors of business and life in Wisconsin, parallel efforts are underway to prioritize DEI. We may be in different places based on the diversity of our experiences, but we’re all traveling the same journey: Toward One Wisconsin. For more details, including sponsorship opportunities and registration, visit

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