A Message from Damian Woetzel and Christina Salgado | June 1, 2020

Monday, Jun 01, 2020
Share on:

Dear Juilliard Community:

We stand in solidarity with our Black students, faculty and staff, and with our larger Black community of artists, including Juilliard alumni. We recognize that there is much work to be done listening, learning, and further becoming a community that not only rejects racism, but that is actively anti-racist, working to tear down systemic racism and injustice.

As part of our ongoing and renewed commitment to this work, Juilliard will be joining in observing #BlackOutTuesday tomorrow in the following ways:

  • A Silent Remembrance for 8 minutes and 46 seconds in memory of George Floyd and the many other Black people who have lost their lives as the result of racial violence will be held for the community online tomorrow at noon.
  • Recognizing the need for Juilliard’s Black community to have a space for healing, Dr. Renee Baron, Alicia Graf Mack, and Weston Sprott will host a forum for Black students, faculty, and staff at 5:30pm.
  • The Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging (EDIB) Taskforce will meet with the Senior Staff as well as the Faculty Council to discuss the working plans of the Taskforce and how they may be strengthened, communicated more broadly with the larger community, and further acted upon. As we move forward, the Taskforce will share the takeaways and action items, and invite reflections and feedback. 

We urge everyone to actively learn more about what each of us can do to become anti-racist. We are including a list of educational resources and a definition of anti-racism at the end of this message, and we encourage every member of our community to think about what you can personally do to support racial justice and help further Juilliard’s values of equity, diversity, inclusion and belonging.

We recognize that many of you have shared your thoughts with us already, and for this we thank you. We are listening, will continue to listen, and we acknowledge that much hard work remains. To share your ideas, comments and suggestions with the EDIB Taskforce, please send them to [email protected].

In solidarity,  

Damian Woetzel, President 
Christina Salgado, Director of EDIB Initiatives 

Definition of Anti-Racism:  
Everyone is impacted by the system of racism, and therefore has to tenaciously walk against that system. As Dr. Beverly Daniel Tatum describes, "I sometimes visualize the ongoing cycle of racism as a moving walkway at the airport. Active racist behavior is equivalent to walking fast on the conveyor belt…Passive racist behavior is equivalent to standing still on the walkway. No overt effort is being made, but the conveyor belt moves the bystanders along to the same destination as those who are actively walking. Some of the bystanders may feel the motion of the conveyor belt, see the active racists ahead of them, and choose to turn around…But unless they are walking actively in the opposite direction at a speed faster than the conveyor belt – unless they are actively antiracist – they will find themselves carried along with the others."

Selections from the EDIB Workshop Resource List:


  • Alexander, Michelle. The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Color Blindness
  • Catlin, Karen. Better Allies. Everyday Actions to Create Inclusive, Engaging Workplaces
  • Coates, Ta-Nehisi. Between the World and Me
  • Crenshaw, Kimberlee. Seeing Race Again: Countering Colorblindness Across the Disciplines 
  • DiAngelo, Robin.  White Fragility: Why It’s so Hard for White People to Talk About Race
  • Kendi, Ibram. How to be an Antiracist
  • Rankine, Claudia. Citizen: An American Lyric
  • Tatum, Beverly.  Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?  And Other Conversations About Race