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SHE TALKS: A Candid Conversation About Race

  • Sterling Events Center 6134 U.S. 290 Frontage Road Austin, TX, 78752 United States (map)


Produced by #bossbabesATX, SHE TALKS is an ongoing discussion-based personal and professional development series, tackling topics from finances to intersectional feminism.

In this session, #bbatx programming committee member Keisha Gillis will be joined by a panel of community members to discuss racial representation, diversity and inclusion in the workplace. The talk will address concerns brought up in our Diversity and Inclusion Survey (which you are welcome to contribute to!), as well as our first event in this summer series, SHE TALKS: Tearing Down Tokenism. Together, we hope to create a learning environment—one that sincerely teaches us all how to support one another. Join us!

PS: Prior to the start of this talk from 6 PM to 7 PM, our committee members Kristina Gonzalez, Jasmine Robinson and Keisha Gillis, will be hosting Cocktails and Conversations.If you're coming to this talk alone or just want to settle in before digging into this subject  matter, join us at 6 PM to shake off any nerves and meet new friends. You'll also have the chance to anonymously submit questions to the panel during this time. See ya then!

— About the BBATX Diversity and Inclusion Survey —

How are you treated at work? At #bbatx, we want to know. Through our new Diversity and Inclusion survey, we hope to better understand the differences among our shared experiences as women and nonbinary people in the workplace. Your answers will be used to paint a more objective picture about diversity and inclusion in professional spaces. (All professions are welcome to contribute.) We will share the conclusions of this survey on our blog and on July 24 at SHE TALKS: A Candid Conversation About Race, so stay tuned! 🌀

[Major shouts to our research team, led by committee member Sarah Kettles, for championing this data-driven process.] 


Keisha Gillis [MODERATOR] 
Keisha Gillis aka “The Queen of Budgeting” is a money coach living and working in Austin, Texas. She’s passionate about helping her community, friends and family  financially thrive by educating them on proper budgeting techniques, holding them accountable for saving adequately and providing them with diverse investment portfolios. When she’s not talking money, she’s out making new connections to grow her online business directory, The Connector ATX, or sipping tea and talking collaborations with members of her women’s group Ladies in Alignment. Keisha was born in Knoxville, TN and raised in the small town about 30 miles east called Jefferson City located in the heart of the Smokey Mountains. Her father is a Marine Corp Vietnam veteran and retired Electrician and her mother climbed the corporate ladder for a large utility company before retiring to run her own website development business. In her free time, Keisha is an avid crafter and loves to crochet blankets for her family and friends.

Farah Muscadin [PANELIST] 
Farah is the current Interim Police Monitor for the City of Austin. Prior to this she served as the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students at Chicago State University (CSU).  While at CSU, Farah served as the Interim Dean of Student Affairs, the Director of Intergovernmental Affairs, and the Board Liaison to the Board of Trustees. Prior to joining CSU, Farah worked as the Associate Director of Legislative and Government Affairs for the City Colleges of Chicago, Director of Legislative Affairs for the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation. Farah was also Assistant Public Defender for the Cook County Public Defender's Office and Guardian ad Litem for the Cook County Public Guardian's Office.Farah currently serves on the board for the Austin Iowa Alumni Club and the YWCA Greater Austin.  She is a member of the Travis County Women’s Lawyers Association and a mentor with GirlForward. Farah holds a bachelor's of business administration from the University of Iowa and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Iowa College of Law.

Dr. Elizabeth Medina [PANELIST] 
Dr. Elizabeth Guillory Medina is a native of Beaumont, Texas, lived in Manor, Texas for over eleven years, and currently resides in Pflugerville, Texas with her husband Omar and daughter Isabelle. She holds a Ph.D., M.A., and BA in Sociology with teaching and research interests in the areas of Diversity, Inclusion, Equity, and Social Justice in Higher Education. As a Student Affairs Administrator, she has also previously served as Director of Campus Life and the First Year Experience at Huston-Tillotson University and Assistant Dean of Students at The University of Texas at Austin where she also held a leadership role on the Campus Climate Response Team in responding to incidents of bias on behalf of the institution. She is currently the Associate Vice President for Student Life and Dean of Students at Concordia University Texas where she oversees the coordination of Student Activities, Residence Life, and Mission-Based Experiential Learning as well as Diversity and Inclusion initiatives for the university. She is also extremely passionate about supporting, empowering, and uplifting other women both personally (in terms of mental and physical health and wellness) and professionally (with work/life balance/integration).

Jane Hervey [PANELIST] 
Jane Hervey is a creative producer, activist, entrepreneur, writer and performance artist. Originally from the Rio Grande Valley (956 por vida), Hervey moved to Austin to study at the University of Texas. After earning her Bachelor's of Science in Journalism and pursuing a career in freelance writing, Hervey began searching for resources and a space to ask professional questions. She hosted her first #bossbabesATX meet in 2015, hoping to foster community and connection between self-identified women in Austin, Texas. She now runs the nonprofit and its festival, BABES FEST, while managing her own production studio, Group Work, and maintaining a column on creative entrepreneurship and lifestyle design at Forbes. Her personal and professional life are dedicated to improving community infrastructure, retooling systems of collaboration and changing cultural economies to create equal opportunity for women and girls.

Alex Perez-Puelles [PANELIST]
Alex is an Austin-based Operations Specialist with a background in Event Planning. She moved to Austin from South Florida in a desperate need for change. She likes to stay active in her community by volunteering with organizations, such as #bossbabesATX, Las Ofrendas and Laissez Fair. In her spare time, she likes going to shows, hanging out with friends and trying our new recipes. She is always brainstorming ways of collaborating with others, via photoshoots, podcasts or events.


Tickets for this session are $5 and contribute toward the event's production costs.


About #bossbabesATX: Through event series, showcases and personal/professional development programs, we've provided a platform of visibility, outreach and financial opportunity to 1500+ Texas-based women and nonbinary creatives, entrepreneurs and community organizers. We make space to catalyze multi-industry coalitions, share our crafts, seek help and provide each other with practical and emotional resources. There is power in our shared experiences. We were named "Best Bossy Babes" of 2015 by The Austin Chronicle, were selected by The White House to attend the United State of Women Summit in June 2016 and inducted into the City of Austin's Hall of Fame in 2017. Learn more at

Earlier Event: July 19
Meet Her Hands: Deborah Valcin
Later Event: August 2
The Residency: SESSION VI