Bobby WorldWide Approved AAA

The Seattle Office for Civil Rights

Ed Murray, Mayor
Patricia Lally, Acting Director

810 Third Avenue, Suite 750, Seattle WA 98104-1627
(206) 684-4500, TTY (206) 684-0332
Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday to Friday
Wheel Chair accessible on the Third Avenue entrance.


A discussion about racial issues for City employees to engage in open, respectful, confidential dialogue.

CityTalks! is a year-round series of forums for City of Seattle employees to encourage honest conversations about race in the workplace. Four times a year, CityTalks! brings interested City employees together for 90-minute conversations, guided by trained facilitators.

Each event is organized around a race-related theme, and participants are welcome to attend any or all sessions. Information about other race-related programs and resources is always available. CityTalks! is designed and coordinated by the Seattle Office for Civil Rights and City of Seattle Personnel Department. Employees' participation at all levels is vital to the success of the program.

The Goal

CityTalks! is based on the premise that race relations are best understood through the historical context in which our beliefs, attitudes and behaviors were shaped, as well as the contemporary context that influences us today. We believe understanding how our past impacts our present helps us work towards a more productive future. Increased understanding results in creating more respectful workplaces.

CityTalks! Is based on the success of the Urban Enterprise Center's Forum on Race program. While we have made progress in race relations since the days of separate facilities and overt exclusion from full civic and political participation, we still struggle with the complex issues of race and racism in the workplace.

Our promise to participants:

  • Small group discussion led by trained facilitator.
  • Safe, respectful, exploratory discussion.
  • It'll get in your heart, not in your face.

Using facilitated discussion, we can challenge stereotypes, understand the world experience and views of others, and increase our own and others' knowledge about race issues.

Ten actions a person can take to improve race relations today

  • Build interracial relationships.

  • Work one-on-one with the people who share your community.

  • Encourage your children to develop friendships with children from other backgrounds.

  • Welcome new neighbors, and seek opportunities to meet newcomers in the community. Reach out, especially if they are from a different background than yours.

  • Be a mentor to young people.

  • Attend concerts, plays, and museum exhibits that relate to the themes of race relations and diversity.

  • Listen to and share stories about personal and family histories that are related to the history of race relations in our country.

  • Seek out information about race relations in your community and in the country.

  • Vote, and encourage others to vote.

New Advisory Board Members

  • Advisory Board Meetings
  • Facilitators Training
  • CityTalks Session
  • CityTalks Series

Advisory Board 2003-2004

Germaine W. Covington, 
Seattle Office for Civil Rights

Teresa Jacobs,  
Ethics and Elections

Judi Krabill,  
Seattle Office for Civil Rights

Jacque Larrainzar,  
Seattle Office for Civil Rights

Ruth Scollan,  
Seattle Deparment of Transportation

Debbie Terry-Hays,  
Seattle City Light

Robert Akhtar,  
Seattle Municipal Court

Henri C. McClenney,  
Seattle Personnel Department

Willair St.Vil,  
Office of Economic Development

Dale Tiffany,  
Seattle Office for Civil Rights

For upcoming events. See Events Page.

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This page was updated on: May 16, 2003, by: Priscilla Poulos