Mary Pender Greene, LCSW-R

Last week I had the pleasure of connecting with Mary Pender Greene, one of the most pivotal agents of anti-racism work in NYC and another founding member of the Anti-Racist Alliance.  Mary is also an accomplished psychotherapist, relationship expert, executive coach and professional speaker.  As you might imagine, she has the potential to be one intimidating woman.  Luckily enough for me, she is also supportive, informative, gracious and kind.

Mary has 25 years of expertise in her multi-faceted field, during which she has accomplished amazing feats in the battle against racism, including working with others to found the Anti-Racist Alliance of NYC, and (according to her website) co-editing “Racism and Racial Identity: Reflections on Urban Practice in Mental Health and Social Services” and “Beyond Diversity and Multiculturalism: Towards the Development of AntiRacist Institutions and Leaders.” Mary also worked for the Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services, where she served as an Assistant Executive Director, and helped to found the organizations initiative to end institutional racism, Confronting Organizational Racism or COR.

Mary gave me some great news about the work she is doing.  Right now, Mary is teaching a course called Anti-Racism for Social Workers, a 3-credit class hosted at Stony Brook for its 2nd year, and starting in January she will be teaching it at NYU!  For more information about the course, please see this detailed course information.

Mary also started some awesome connections for me with other activists she is working with through the Anti-Racist Alliance.  Mary is a facilitator of the Antiracist Discussion for Human Service Educators, Practitioners, Executives and Managers team, and encouraged me to find out about the following projects:

– the ARA Media Team

-a National Association of Social Workers think tank re: impacting social work education

-getting Anti-Racist Education further into educational institutions in NYC

Voices from the Field, a book project of stories about race from people in school social work settings

I will, going forward, speak with the various contacts Mary provided me with to learn more about the above work, starting with Dr. Alan Siskind (blog post to follow).

When I asked Mary what she considers to be the current accomplishments of her organizing groups, she said with gumption that it is a great success in her eyes that they are meeting regularly and all working hard to change things within their own organizations.  I think this is a powerful statement about real change–that is has to start within.  It comes from commitment to the cause and willingness to reflect that commitment through showing up, and living authentically in your own life and work.  I am really excited to have had this chance to talk with her, and to hear that her team is successfully meeting and taking steps toward transforming human services to an anti-racist approach.

Image Thanks for your awesome work, Mary!

For information on how to get involved with the Antiracist Discussion for Human Service Educators, Practitioners, Executives and Managers team, or to attend a meeting:

When: 1st Monday of each month
Time: 12 Noon to 2PM Bring your lunch!
Where: Jewish Board of Family and Children Service
135 West 50th Street Between 5th and 6th
6th floor
RSVP needed to place name on list for security
If you are not able to RSVP call 212-582-9100 and press “0” for operator and receptionist will give approval to come up.
Facilitators: Alan Siskind, Bob Schachter, Michael Stoller, Mary Pender Greene
CONTACT: Mary Pender Greene 212-245-2510 or
Consultant: David Billings, CORE Trainer PISAB,
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  1. intro to Mary | the Anti-Racist Alliance of the Greater NY Metropolitan Area
  2. A conversation with Alan Siskind | the Anti-Racist Alliance of the Greater NY Metropolitan Area

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