BLACK BOYS seeks to illuminate the full spectrum of Black Male humanity in America. Through an intimate, inter-generational exploration of identity, opportunity, voice and transformation, BLACK BOYS provides insight at the intersection of sports, education and criminal justice. Directed by Sonia Lowman, BLACK BOYS is produced by Never Whisper Justice in partnership with Listen Up Productions.
In collaboration with NYU McSilver Institute for Poverty Policy and Research and Campaign for Black Male Achievement, Film Director Sonia Lowman, will facilitate a panel discussion connected to issues addressed in the feature length social justice documentary, BLACK BOYS.
The purpose of this engagement is to reframe the language of “Mental Health” to “Brain Health” while addressing the need for deeper dialogue and understanding related to the humanity of Black Boys and Men in America.
Sonia Lowman - Director, BLACK BOYS
Rebekah Austin-Wiliams - Mental and Behavioral Healthcare Professional
Dr. Michael Lindsey - Executive Director, NYU McSilver Institute for Poverty Policy and Research
Malcolm Jenkins - Founder and Chairman, Malcolm Jenkins Foundation, Co-Founder, Players Coalition, NFL Player, Philadelphia Eagles
Shawn Dove - CEO, Campaign for Black Male Achievement
REBEKAH AUSTIN-WILLIAMS has spent the majority of her professional career in mental and behavioral healthcare and served as the Outpatient Services Director of Programs for Pinnacle Pointe Behavioral Healthcare System in Little Rock, Arkansas. In that role, Rebekah provided programmatic leadership and development that provided mental health services to children and families throughout the state. She also has prior experience in workforce services, early childhood education, and project management for state government agencies. In addition to being a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., Rebekah holds an MPA from Webster University and Bachelor’s of Social Work from Philander Smith College. Rebekah is the proud mother of three boys, Cris (19), Coner (14), and Chawn (12).
Dr. MICHAEL LINDSEY is the Executive Director of the McSilver Institute for Poverty Policy and Research and Constance and Martin Silver Professor of Poverty Studies at NYU Silver School of Social Work. He holds a PhD in social work and MPH from the University of Pittsburgh; an MSW from Howard University; and a BA in sociology from Morehouse College. He also completed a two-year postdoctoral fellowship in public health at the Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University. He has received research support from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) to examine the social network influences on perceptual and actual barriers to mental health care among African American adolescent males with depression. In 2018, Dr. Lindsey was named a Health Innovators Fellow by The Aspen Institute.
MALCOLM JENKINS is the Founder and Chairman of The Malcolm Jenkins Foundation and ensures the integrity of its mission: to effectuate positive change in the lives of youth, particularly those in underserved communities. Through an ongoing series of programs, educational initiatives and scholarship opportunities aimed at building character and promoting health and wellness, the Foundation seeks to help youth develop the skills they need to succeed in life and become contributing members of their communities. Jenkins received his BA in Communications from The Ohio State University in 2009 and co-founded the Players Coalition in 2017 to address issues of social injustice and racial inequality.
SHAWN DOVE serves as the CEO of the Campaign for Black Male Achievement (CBMA), a national membership organization dedicated to ensuring the growth, sustainability and impact of leaders and organizations focused on improving the life outcomes of America’s black men and boys. Dove is a recipient of the Charles H. Revson Fellowship at Columbia University and was awarded a 2014 Prime Movers Fellowship for social movement leaders. He was an Ebony Magazine Power 100 awardee in 2015. He earned a BA in English from Wesleyan University and is a graduate of Columbia University Business School’s Institute for Non-Profit Management.
Never Whisper Justice (NWJ) is a disruptive social justice media company fusing bold storytelling and concrete social impact. Uncompromising in the pursuit of truth. Unyielding in the face of necessary change. We value truth, justice and freedom. We thrive at building relationships, connecting dots and forging unity. We bring laser focus, impenetrable conviction and deep commitment to all that we do. We remain relentlessly optimistic.