Unconscious Bias Symposium 2017

Awareness, Transformation, Action

Advance Gender Equity in the Arts (AGE) presented the symposium Unconscious Bias: Achieving Gender Equity (UBS 2017) March 3 and 4, 2017 on the campus of Portland State University.

Advance Gender Equity in the Arts to Hold Symposium in Portland

Produced in partnership with the PSU Office of Global Diversity and Inclusion, UBS 2017 explored how unconscious bias influences our behavior, and impacts our lives and the art we create. The symposium focused on gender bias and the intersectionality of age, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender variance/nonconformity, and disabilities.

“Unconscious bias is real!! Intersectional feminism is amazing!”
– UBS 2017 Participant

About Unconscious Bias: Achieving Gender Equity

Goals of Unconscious Bias Symposium 2017 were:

  • To raise AWARENESS of unconscious gender bias and its impact on the arts and culture
  • To stimulate TRANSFORMATION that leads to growth and change
  • To facilitate ACTION plans for achieving gender equity in the arts

UBS 2017 brought together local and national artists, social justice activists, patrons of the arts, arts leaders and decision makers, educators, and students to co-create a collective movement for change. Nearly 40 presenters from across the country participated as speakers, panelists and performers during three days of events.

Dael Orlandersmith and Michaela Watkins, UBS 2017 Keynote Speakers

Through dialogue, presentations and performance, UBS 2017 gave opportunity to question, challenge, and celebrate new pathways that give genders voice, visibility and empowerment — promoting equity for women in theatre and the performing arts across the life span.

View event photos here.

“The discussion was invigorating, exciting, and inspiring! I felt that there was honesty and support and that huge important issues were brought into light.”

– UBS 2017 Participant

‘Muthaland’ written and performed by Minita Gandhi; presented as part of UBS 2017

Susannah Mars interviews Minita Gandhi

UBS 2017 Scholarships

AGE provided scholarships to  students, artists, and those otherwise unable to pay the full symposium registration fee. The UBS 2017 Scholarship Fund was generously funded by sponsors and individual supporters.

“I felt comfortable being vulnerable, and left feeling more educated and empowered.”
– UBS 2017 Participant

Thanks to Our Generous Sponsors and Supporters

Jayne Lovell
Jackson Foundation
Pacific Power Foundation
Audi Beaverton
Angie’s List Foundation, a fund of Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF)
Puffin Foundation






Cheryl’s on 12th
Betsy & Iya
La Bonita Restaurant
Nicholas Restaurant
Ninkasi Brewing Company
Spella Caffe
Stoller Family Estate
Westrey Wine Company

A special thanks to Portland State University and the Office of Global Diversity & Inclusion
for its partnership in helping make UBS 2017 possible!

Portland State University Global Diversity and Inclusion



The UBS 2017 Steering Committee and Production Team

Jane Vogel, Co-Chair; Carmen Suarez, Co-Chair; Kiera Coughlan, Lorelei Culbertson, Jane Fellows, Ozzie Gonzalez, Cheryl Green, Jenni Green, Chelsea Lowrie, Karla Mason Smith, Whitney Vogel, Gigi Williams, Jeanette Williams, Phyllis Yes, Carol Zajac

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