Join Us on Tuesday for The National Day of Racial Healing

Dear Friends,

I hope the New Year finds you healthy and safe. On behalf of my co-chair, Amanda Arrington, and the entire Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Committee for The Association, I’m inviting you to join us this Tuesday, January 19, for The National Day of Racial Healing.

Started by the W. K. Kellogg Foundation in 2017 and always held the Tuesday following Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, The National Day of Racial Healing is a time for contemplation and collective action. It is a time to foster engagement around the issues we in animal welfare have started discussing, issues around inequity and injustice in our field and in our communities.

Most importantly, this a day to heal yourself, and to hold the space for others in your organization and community to heal. 

In the past, the Kellogg Foundation held an in-person event, but this year we have a unique opportunity to connect virtually for a timely conversation with activists, artists and leaders on equity and justice. The event kicks off at 3 ET on Tuesday, and you can RSVP here.

The DEI Committee is working hard to create and share resources to support animal welfare and our respective organizations to dismantle the systems and processes that perpetuate exclusion and inequity.

Several DEI trainings, blogs, webcasts, and additional information can be found at The Learning Center DEI Resources page. We’re now also working with a professional DEI consultant to best achieve success in our journey to create humane communities. Commemorating The National Day of Healing is an important step we can take together.

Please try to reschedule whatever you need to in order to attend the Tuesday event. And if you are in a leadership role, ensure that staff who want to participate are able to do so also. I’ll be there, and I hope you will be, too.


Peace and blessings as we continue this journey together,

Johnny L. Jenkins, Jr.
Committee Co-Chair for
Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion 

P.S. You can also host or attend a virtual event in your shelter or community. For ideas, download the Business Action Kit, which includes a template for signage you can display to show your participation. How about a virtual lunch-and-learn to kick off regular discussions, where staff and leadership can share information and brainstorm workplace challenges and solutions?


Johnny L. Jenkins, Jr. is an experienced grantmaking professional with expertise in strategic grantmaking and program management. As founder and managing director of The JyOba! Project, he is dedicated to providing creative and critical thought leadership to projects that advance racial equity, diversity, and inclusion in the pursuit of a more just and equitable world. He has managed multimillion-dollar grant portfolios to advance racial and economic justice, LGBT equality, and animal welfare. As a member of PetSmart Charities’ Relationship Management Team, Johnny was responsible for managing the adoption grant portfolio for the Eastern United States and Puerto Rico. Johnny also provides leadership to multiple Diversity, Equity and Inclusion initiatives in Animal Welfare including PetSmart Charities (Racial Equity Advisory Team Co-Lead), The Association for Animal Welfare Advancement (DEI Advisory Committee Co-Lead), and the Human Animal Support Services (HASS) Project DEI Advisory Committee.


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