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Building a New Foundation: Dismantling Housing Segregation Brick by Brick

How Do We Dismantle the History of Racism and Segregation in VA housing? AN IN PERSON AND LIVE STREAMED EVENT

By The League of Women Voters of Virginia

When and where

Date and time

Thursday, April 27 · 5:30 - 7pm EDT


Virginia Museum of History & Culture 428 North Arthur Ashe Boulevard Richmond, VA 23220

About this event

  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Mobile eTicket

The League of Women Voters of Virginia, in conjunction with the Virginia Museum of History and Culture, is holding a public forum on Thursday, April 27th from 5:30 to 7pm, titled “Dismantling Virginia’s Housing Segregation Legacy Brick by Brick”. The event will be in the Theatre at the VMHC , 428 N. Arthur Ashe Boulevard, Richmond, VA 23220 and live streamed. The event is free but registration is required. Virginia Housing is the title sponsor and partners include Housing Forward Virginia, the Richmond Association of Realtors and the Virginia Housing Alliance.

The purpose of this Forum is to educate the public about the history and impact of past housing discriminatory laws, policies and practices, and provide examples of potential solutions occurring in Virginia and other states.

While explicit housing discrimination against people of color has been illegal since 1968, it has been going on since the latter part of the 19th century. Local, state, and federal discriminatory laws, policies and practices have resulted in many Black neighborhoods being segregated, destroyed and/or divided. The Black homeownership rate in Virginia is 48% compared to 73% for non Hispanic white households, and many segregated neighborhoods have high poverty rates, underperforming schools and poor health outcomes. How can we change this? What can we do about it?

To answer these questions, the League of Women Voters of Virginia, in conjunction with the Virginia Museum of History and Culture, will host an engaging public forum on Thursday, April 27th from 5:30 to 7:00pm, followed by a reception. The event will be in-person and live-streamed. Tickets are free, but registration is required.

A panel of creative-thinking experts will have a free-flowing conversation about our obstacles—and how communities can make meaningful progress to right these past (and ongoing) wrongs.

Who you’ll hear from

Dr. Marvin T. Chiles

Assistant Professor of African American History, Old Dominion University

Dr. Chiles holds a PhD in American history from the University of Georgia. Since 2020, he has been the Assistant Professor of African American History at Old Dominion University. His specialties are black, education, and sports history in the 20th century US South. He is the author of several peer-reviewed articles in top-tier academic journals, and he has worked closely with the Virginia Department of Education on improving the history curriculum across the Commonwealth. Chiles has also appeared in the Emmy Award winning documentary called "How the Monuments Came Down," dealing with the history behind the controversial removal of Confederate statues from Richmond's Monument Avenue. Most importantly, Chiles is the author of the soon-to-be released book with the University of Virginia Press titled, The Struggle for Change: Race and the Politics of Race in Modern Richmond.

Maureen Yap

Senior Counsel, National Fair Housing Alliance

Maureen is a Senior Counsel on NFHA’s Public Policy and Enforcement Teams, with a focus on fair lending, financial technology, mortgage policy, and housing finance reform. Maureen has worked in fair housing and fair lending since 1995. Prior roles include working on a range of civil rights and consumer protection issues at the Federal Reserve Board, including leading the Board’s Fair Lending Enforcement Section and founding the Unfair and Deceptive Acts or Practices (UDAP) Section. Maureen was also an Associate at the law firms of Relman Colfax PLLC and Buckley LLP.

James W. Dyke, Jr.

Senior Advisor, State Government Relations, McGuireWoods Consulting LLC

James (Jim) Dyke, Jr. is Senior Advisor, State Government Relations for McGuireWoods Consulting LLC. Jim's broad practice covers corporate, legislative, education, governmental relations, economic development and municipal law. He previously served as Virginia's Secretary of Education under former Virginia Gov. L. Douglas Wilder, and as domestic policy advisor to former Vice President Walter Mondale. Jim co-authored the recently released Zoning and Segregation in Virginia report prepared by McGuireWoods Consulting. This report described the ways zoning laws segregated communities by wealth and income and perpetuated a legacy of racial segregation, and offered practical solutions to address the problem. Jim graduated with honors from Howard University and the Howard University School of Law and has earned honorary degrees from several colleges and universities including the University of Richmond and Virginia State University,. He served as law clerk to the Honorable Spottswood W. Robinson III of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.

Our moderator:

Melody C. Barnes

Melody Barnes is executive director of the University of Virginia’s Karsh Institute of Democracy where she is also the J. Wilson Newman Professor of Governance at the Miller Center of Public Affairs and a senior fellow at the Karsh Center for Law & Democracy.

What you’ll learn

The origins of housing segregation began in Virginia, along with relevant national context.

The historical—and ongoing—roles played by the public and private sectors in maintaining patterns of segregation.

How long-term segregation negatively impacts all of our lives to this day, including housing affordability, economic opportunity, and educational achievement.

What some communities in Virginia and beyond are doing to solve this challenge.

Who should attend

Housing segregation affects all of us, so everyone is encouraged to attend. In particular, we think you’ll find this conversation useful if you are involved in neighborhood and community groups, work closely with elected officials, or are a concerned citizen.


Title sponsor:

Virginia Housing


Housing Forward Virginia

Virginia Housing Alliance

Virginia Museum of History and Culture

Partners and supporters:

Richmond Association of Realtors

This will be in person and live streamed - you need to RSVP for either.

Frequently asked questions

Is there parking?
How can I live stream the event?

About the organizer

We are proud to be non-partisan, neither supporting nor opposing candidates or political parties at any level of government. We work to encourage in formed and active participation in government and influence public policy through education and advocacy.