One America - Race Relations Institute of Fisk University

Program: Race Relations Institute of Fisk University, Nashville,TN
Contact(s): Dr. Raymond A. Winbush, Executive Director: (615) 329-8575
Purpose: To improve race relations in the United States through strategic message dissemination, research and national dialogue

Background Program Operations Outcomes


In 1942, Dr. Charles S. Johnson of Fisk University began a series of seminars known as the Race Relations Institute (RRI). This forum encouraged social scientists, religious leaders, educators, government officials and other notable figures to offer research and discussion on racial parity, and it created a standard method for holding a national dialogue on race. The institute was the vehicle used to mount race-related discussions on issues such as economics, education, governmental policy, housing and employment. Since 1942, RRI has continued to increase awareness among all people of the divisive and insidious nature of racism.

Program Operations

Each year the Race Relations Institute holds a one-week seminar on race, convening national and international participants from various areas of concentrations including: education, economics, media, law, religion and health. The RRI has established a Website ( and a list serve, WILDER ("World Institute for Learning, Discussing and Evaluating Race Relationships"), to encourage dialogue and further disseminate information on race relations. The institute also operates the HOLDINGS Project (Holding Our Library Documents Insures Nobility Greatness and Strength) to preserve the intellectual properties and history of African people, the Dubois/Nash Lecture Series, and corporate-sponsored executive policy seminars.

Outcomes and Significant Accomplishments

Since October 1996 when RRI received an infusion of funding from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the institute has conducted over 20 lectures, community forums, and workshops, held three conferences, and created a daily listserve that involves international participants. RRI has partnered with several organizations on its programs including: the U.S. Departments of Justice and Transportation, the Public Broadcasting System and several universities.

Community Building

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National Conference

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Brooklyn Unity Campaign

Study Circles Resource Center

City Year

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Shared Mission Focus on Young People

Race Relations Institute of Fisk University

United National Indian Tribal Youth, Inc. (UNITY)

National Multicultural Institute

Help Increase the Peace Project

National Coalition Building Institute

National Center on Black-Jewish Relations

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