Robin Alpern 
Center for the Study of White American Culture, Inc. 


Wednesday, May 5, 2021 at 7:00 PM EDT
Wednesday, May 19, 2021 at 9:00 PM EDT

Add to Calendar 


This is an online event. 

Join My Mailing List

White Accountability and Organizing

Working Effectively for Racial Justice

May 5, 12 & 19, 2021
(1 workshop over 3 sessions)

PREREQUISITE: Participants must have taken 1) the Fundamentals, Part 1 workshop offered by CSWAC, or 2) the Undoing Racism and Community Organizing workshop offered by the People's Institute for Survival and Beyond, or 3) the Racial Equity Workshop - Phase 1 offered by the Racial Equity Institute, or 4) equivalent training and experience.

Throughout history there have always been some white people who have worked for racial justice. But history also tells us that work has not always been as effective as it might be. When white anti-racist activists have not worked in accountable relationships with anti-racist people of color, the white activists have often gone astray, developing approaches and perspectives that have not advanced the cause of racial justice and equity.

Anti-racist activists and organizers have come to learn that white people need some basic understanding of what it means to organize other white people while working together with people of color. This requires white people to look at some ingrained cultural habits that may lead them astray in the process. White culture emphasizes action over relationship. White culture also discredits leadership of color. And white culture asserts the primacy of personal freedom and individual acts over collective responses. These ingrained features of white culture can make racial justice organizing efforts ineffective.

White anti-racist activists and organizers need to understand why and how accountable relationships with people of color are a necessary part of the work. This workshop is intended to give white people some basic knowledge about:

  • why accountability is important for white people in anti-racist organizing
  • basic dimensions of accountability
  • barriers to being accountable
  • putting accountability into practice

The workshop touches on several topics in an introductory way, including:

  • the ally model and where accountability fits in
  • levels of accountability – personal, workgroup, institution/organization
  • who are we accountable to?
  • accountability principles
  • ways to be not accountable
  • consequences of unaccountable behavior
  • white cultural practices
  • accountability statements
  • personal accountability networks

Who the Workshop Is For

The workshop is appropriate for white people who are open to learning what to do about racism, perhaps feeling they should be doing something but not sure what. The workshop is also appropriate for people of color who want to support white people who want to take action against racism.


The workshop will take place during three Wednesday meetngs in May of 2021, for a total of 6 hours of information-packed content.

First meeting: Wednesday, May 5th*

Second meeting: Wednesday, May 12th*

Third meeting: Wednesday, May 19th*

*All meetings take place at 7-9pm Eastern; 6-8pm Central; 5-7pm Mountain; 4-6pm Pacific

All meetings are recorded and the recording will be made available after each meeting for viewing by registered workshop participants only.

Registration Fee

Standard rate $125.

This registration fee covers one registration only. To register groups, please contact the registration assistant at


Meet the Trainers

Robin Mallison Alpern

 Robin Mallison Alpern, Director of Training at CSWAC, has a lifelong concern for racial justice and equity. Robin's anti-racist activism has taken a variety of forms, including study of books, films, and lectures; taking part in workshops, seminars, and trainings; publishing essays, articles, and reports; public speaking; facilitating community dialogue; designing and leading workshops; and community organizing. Robin has worked with several anti-racism organizations in her hometown and in her wider faith community, including mixed-race groups and white caucus groups. She maintains ties with anti-racist leaders, both white and of color, who have served as long-term mentors. Recently Robin has co-taught courses at Vassar College on the topic of raising anti-racist children.

Robin has raised four children of her own, who teach her everyday how to make the world a better place to live in. 

Edie Grauer

Edie Grauer, BSW, MSW, is a seasoned non-profit executive and change agent whose career has focused on promoting empowerment, inclusion and self-determination of oppressed and disenfranchised persons. She has extensive experience in the areas of homelessness, criminal and juvenile justice, children in out-of-home placement, substance abuse and addiction, and HIV/AIDS.

Edie has taught at numerous colleges and universities in the areas of social work, criminal justice, community and leadership building, drug abuse and addiction, sociology, and psychology. She developed and presented training for The New Jersey Project on Inclusive Scholarship, Curriculum, and Teaching to college faculty on honoring and infusing cultural diversity across the disciplines.

Edie has designed and implemented training in community-based agencies including power and privilege; empowerment; self-determination. She was recognized by Volunteers of America for her infusion of cultural diversity into their employee training and program policies and standards, and was awarded a Transcultural Art Project through Rutgers University for a transitional housing program for persons affected by HIV.

Edie currently serves on the Board of Trustees of Court Appointed Special Advocates of Somerset, Hunterdon and Warren Counties (CASA).


What People Are Saying…

There was a lot of information that deepened my understanding of accountability & the barriers to it.

Elizabeth Quincy


I always felt supported & safe to share my thoughts. The material & presentation has deepened my understanding about the work I hope to do.

Debbie Morenzi


Definitely got clarity/references to pursue for further understanding about organizing & accountability — the inter sections of dynamics in anti-racist work.



A lot of great tools! participant Great framework and resources — especially the piece about how white supremacy can block/interfere with organizing and accountability.



I actually wish it were longer!



I feel like I have a lot to think about coming out of the workshop, and some concrete ideas I want to try and incorporate to increase accountability in my organization.



I’ve got some ideas now for ways to move forward.