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Toni Johnson Office of Race and Social Justice (ORSJ)

The University of Kansas, School of Social Welfare (KUSSW) dedicates The Toni Johnson Office of Race and Social Justice to Dr. Toni Johnson, our beloved colleague, friend, and professor. Dr. Johnson was a member of the KUSSW faculty from 2005-2016. Dr. Johnson committed her life to social, racial, and economic justice for youth and their families. As a practitioner, researcher, and professor, Dr. Johnson aspired to be a social change agent to increase the inclusion and equity of all people, with a particular focus on African American families. She was dedicated to supporting students in and out of the classroom, including her role as the Director for the Multicultural Scholars Program. She received the Gene A. and Gretchen Budig Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2012. The Office [ORSJ] represents KUSSW’s commitment to forward Dr. Johnson’s life work by promoting student involvement and engaged scholarship in the areas of race and social justice.

Co-directors of the Toni Johnson Office of Race and Social Justice
Mahasweta Banerjee
Sydney Spears


Promote an educational environment engaged in racial and social justice


  1. Advance well-being, success, and equity for students of color attending to their intersectionalities
  2. Serve as a catalyst for critical dialogue on race and social justice within the School and the KU community
  3. Expand service, teaching, and research on race and intersectional social justice in our School and the larger community


  1. Support student-engaged research and service experiences for students particularly for first generation students of color
  2. TBD

Tasks to be accomplished within 2016-2017

  1. Address microaggressions in an ongoing manner. In collaboration with the OMA, develop fliers reflecting microaggression through image and words and post in the School/campuses
  2. Provide experiential training on race and social justice by Nicoles Hodges Persley
  3. Conduct a collaborative workshop on race and social justice in partnership with Clarence Lange
  4. Convene at least two critical dialogue/conversation sessions on race and social justice at Lawrence and Edwards campus
  5. Continue to send pertinent articles on race and social justice through the Office
  6. Collaborate with the field office for Social Work Day
  7. Collaborate with the Dean’s office to craft public statements as and when the need arises
  8. Provide academic support to students when needed in collaboration with the School’s faculty, staff, and students

Race and Social Justice Events
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