Chief Creative CatalystCompany: Collective Concepts
Role: Session Presenter
2022 Conference Session:
Beyond Empathy: A Call for White Humility in Response to Black Rage, Part Two
2022 Conference Session: Corporate Complicity: A Case Study in Restorative Justice (FS-3B)
Chevara Orrin, chief creative catalyst for Collective Concepts, is an award-winning diversity, equity, and inclusion strategist, social entrepreneur, published author, filmmaker, public speaker, and social justice activist. She is a forward-thinking catalyst and founder of We Are Straight Allies, a national campaign to support equality and move toward passage of inclusive policies to protect the LGBTQ+ community, and #WhiteAndWoke™, an initiative to raise awareness about racial inequality and promote equity through intentional action. The Allies campaign has drawn the participation of prominent figures such as feminist icon Gloria Steinem and gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum, and was instrumental in the February 14, 2017, passage of a fully comprehensive Human Rights Ordinance in northeast Florida.
She is currently filming “Why is Washington [Still] Burning?” a documentary that chronicles the actions of a collective of 100 white and Jewish activists in support of Black protestors during the Washington, D.C., racial uprisings, days after Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination. The film explores today’s role of white Americans in the struggle for racial justice.
She is a frequent conference presenter, keynote speaker, and facilitator in the corporate, higher education, and nonprofit sectors working with clients such as Facebook, ALSAC/St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Disney, Walgreens, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Amazon, Activision Blizzard, Microsoft, Samsung, and Coca-Cola.
Chevara is deeply inspired by the legacy of her parents. She is the daughter of a white, Jewish mother who served as the lead coordinator for the 100,000-person March on the Pentagon in opposition to the Vietnam War in 1967, and a Black father who was a “fiery top lieutenant” of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and a driving force behind many critical civil rights campaigns of the 1960s, including the 1963 Birmingham Children’s Crusade and 1965 Selma to Montgomery march which led to passage of the Voting Rights Act. Her father was portrayed by Grammy and Academy award-winning artist Common in the critically acclaimed film, “Selma.”
She is an innovative leader with more than 20 years of experience ranging from senior management in the arts and higher education sectors to consulting with Fortune 500 clients. Chevara is a contributing author in the Lambda Literary award-winning anthology “love WITH accountability” (AK Press, fall 2019), a collection of writings that examine how accountability is a powerful and necessary form of love needed to address child sexual abuse. She is also co-founder of The Freedom Collection, a wearable art clothing line that honors the Freedom Riders of the 1960s.
Chevara has been recognized by the White House and the Human Rights Campaign as a leader, advocate, and ally for the LGBTQ community and featured in publications including The Washington Post, The New York Times, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Tikkun Magazine, The Feminist Wire, and CNN. She has also been a featured guest on SiriusXM Radio and was highlighted in John Blake’s 2007 book, “Children of the Movement,” a powerful glimpse into the heart and soul of the Freedom Movement of the Sixties as seen by its children.