Center for Equity and Justice

YWCA’s mission to eliminate racism, empower women and promote peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all has never been more important. Beginning in 2018, YWCA Greenwich began a concerted effort to increase our capacity to deliver racial and gender equity programming with an internal equity assessment and ten months of staff and Board training. In addition, we developed age-appropriate curricula in diversity, equity, inclusion, and anti-racism that we began delivering to youth and adults. During the racial reckoning of the spring and summer of 2020, organizations across Greenwich approached the YWCA for training and we began delivering this curriculum to local non-profits, churches and pre-schools.

In June of 2020, the Board approved the launch of a new Center for Equity and Justice (CEJ), which serves as a community cornerstone dedicated to knowledge dissemination, capacity building, and collaboration to acheive the YWCA mission. The CEJ is guided by four independent and intersecting pillars: community education, direct programming, policy advocacy, and systemic change initiatives. In December 2020, after a nationwide search, we welcomed the first ever Director of Women’s Empowerment and Racial Justice, Erin O. Crosby, who leads the Center for Equity and Justice.

In November 2020, YWCA Greenwich held its annual Women Who Inspire Awards. This award, which uplifts women's voices and spotlights their accomplishments goes to our mission of empowering women. This year's eight honorees, including two teens, and our corporate honoree, Greenwich Hospital truly embody the spirit of this award.

Please scroll down to view some of the CEJ's activities from fiscal year 2021 and to view the 2020 Women Who Inspire Awards Virtual Presentation.

A Statement YWCA Greenwich

April 20, 2021
To Our Community:

The conviction of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin for the 2020 murder of George Floyd is an indelible reminder that accountability matters for victims, communities, and society.

Yesterday’s verdict offers a moment of respite and hope after months of protests, anxiety, and fear that justice might not be served. We know much more needs to be done to ensure that no more lives are lost as tragically, senselessly, and unjustly as George Floyd’s and so many others that have gone before him. Our hearts and prayers remain with the family of George Floyd as they continue to grieve the loss of their father, brother, and friend.

Chauvin’s conviction will not restore what Floyd’s family has lost, nor will it heal the trauma we collectively endured in witnessing his murder. However, it does serve as a signal to the institution of policing that the blatant disregard of Black lives and people of color will no longer be tolerated.

We stand and will work with activists, organizations, and elected officials who are committed to re-imagining public safety and the justice system in Connecticut. The anti-racist future we strive for is one where public safety and systems of justice honor and protect Black lives and people of color.

YWCA Greenwich


Overcoming Racial Health Disparities: During and Beyond COVID-19

A YWCA Greenwich Zoom Event January 21, 2021
Tiffany Donelson
President and CEO Connecticut Health Foundation
Dr. Irene Blanco
Associate Dean
Office of Diversity Enhancement Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Dr. Juliet Mushi
OBGYN and Expert in Maternal/Fetal Health Yale School of Medicine
Dr. Sten Vermund
Dean and Professor of Public Health Yale School of Public Health

6women were Honored with Women Who Inspire Awards
2teens were Honored with Women Who Inspire Awards
954People Participated in Free Racial and Gender Equity Events over Zoom
4Youth Received Racial Justice Scholarships
170People took the 21 Day Racial Equity and Social Justice Challenge
12Local organizations received Diversity, Inclusion, Values and Equity Training Provided by YW Staff

Stand Against Racism

Stand Against Racism, a signature event for YWCA’s across the federation, takes place each April. At YWCA Greenwich, this week is commemorated in several ways beginning with a rally and proclamation at Town Hall. During this year’s event, four young women, Amira Francois, Lauren Harteveldt, Kayla Malcolm-Joseph, and Tiffany Zheng received Racial Justice Scholarships in recognition of their outstanding leadership in promoting equity in their communities. Another highlight of the event at Town Hall is the placement of a giant Stand Against Racism banner on a Town of Greenwich fire truck. In 2021, over 120 local organizations joined YWCA Greenwich in pledging to Stand Against Racism. Their names are featured on a poster hanging in the lobby at YWCA Greenwich. On April 21, YWCA Greenwich hosted a Zoom panel discussion attended by over 130 people. Please click below to watch a video of Zoning, Housing & Race: A Legacy Impacting Health Outcomes. Our Stand Against Racism events wrapped up with a 21-Day Racial Equity and Social Justice Challenge. 170 subscribers received daily emails to build their own capacity and understanding of gender and racial equity. The Challenge can be found on our website by clicking here.

Zoning, Housing & Race: A Legacy Impacting Health Outcomes

During our 2021 Stand Against Racism event, our panel of experts explored zoning and housing as tools for past and present-day segregation, their impact on health outcomes, and what exclusionary zoning costs us all.

Watch below the discussion on Zoning, Housing & Race — A Legacy Impacting Health Outcomes

Towards Equity: A series examining systemic racism

Througout the year, YWCA Greenwich convenes experts to examine equity issues. Previous panels discussed equity in education with students and educators as well as allyship.

Emanuel Atrocity Forgiveness And Action

Part of the Towards Equity series of panel discussions,our panel of experts spoke with Polly Sheppard, a survivor of the 2015 shooting at Charleston's Emmanuel AME Church and heard her story of tragedy and forgiveness.

Greenwich Student Identity: A Community Conversation On Diversity At Greenwich High School

The community dialogue was the platform for students at GHS to discuss how the concepts of diversity and inclusion tie into their understanding and creation of a Greenwich student identity, while establishing a list of action steps all Greenwich students can partake in to continue the conversation and lead to concreate progress in our town.

Watch below the discussion


Danielle Jean-Guillaume Sittol, Town of Greenwich Youth Services Bureau Administrator


Prathit Kurup

Olivia Schnur

Divya Shenoy

Sydney Steele

Tiffany Zheng

YWCA 2020 Women Who Inspire Awards

YWCA Greenwich empowers women by recognizing their contributions and celebrating their achievements with the Women Who Inspire Awards. In fiscal 2021, YWCA Greenwich presented this event virtually, hosted by CNN Anchor and Author, Alisyn Camerota. An amazing group of women, Marianne Ho Barnum, Donna de Varona, Pam Ehrenkranz, Sachiko Goodman, Liz Longmore and Jane Snowdon, along with Greenwich High School students, Fiona and Isabelle Busch, were honored for their leadership and mentoring of women and girls. Greenwich Hospital was recognized for promoting gender equity throughout the organization, and special presentation honoring the heroic efforts of healthcare workers during the pandemic is included in the video presentation. Thank you to co-chairs Karen Keegan, Romelle Jones Maloney, Bis Misra, and Kate Osman for creatively executing this important event.

Watch the video of the event below.