Growing Racial Equity in the Agile Community for Black Lives

NEXT EVENT: Growing Racial Equity – Reflection and Refraction

EVENT DATE: Friday August 28, 2020

TIME: 3 p.m – 6 p.m Eastern Time




  • Participation in previous events is NOT a prerequisite to participate in future events.  We encourage everyone to review and share the resources and join at any time.
  • Login information will be emailed to registrants 24 hours prior to each event
  • Exploration is occurring for a second series on the opposite timezone
  • This event, as with all events, will follow the Agile Alliance Code of Conduct

FREE for Members & Subscribers

Please log in or sign up for free to register!

Sharing the Journey

Pause with us as we reflect on what has happened so far on our journey towards racial equity. We will explore what we have learned about ourselves, our community, and our organizations through applying a design thinking lens to the complexities of systemic inequity. We hope to reveal the different facets of growth that each of us has experienced along the way, and to gain clarity around what we still need to learn and do. We’ll also consider how we observe and celebrate success in the work we have done and the experiments we are all beginning.

This session will complete the initial series but the work will continue. #GrowingEquityAgile

When will we gather?

August 28, 2020
3:00pm – 6:00pm EST

What is the theme?

Growing Racial Equity – Reflection and Refraction

Can I join if I was not at the first event?

Yes! The event is open to anyone who has joined past sessions and those seeking to learn about what has happened and its impact.

What does it cost?

Free for Agile Alliance members and subscribers

Who is facilitating?

April Jefferson

Antony Marcano

Building Resources

We have created and shared a Google drive folder which includes all of the topics discussed, empathy maps created, photos, and other resources to browse through.

We encourage everyone to add resources to the spreadsheet.

Join Slack

We encourage everyone to join the Talk Agile Alliance Community Slack group and #diversity_inclusion channel to engage with the worldwide community so the conversation can continue and spread year round.

From there we invite you to join the #growing_equity_agile channel.

We Support the Black Community

This long overdue global conversation is spurred by events that have occurred in North America that graphically illustrated the systemic worldwide problem of racism in a way that nobody in the world could ignore. This has given people all around the world the strength to speak up about challenges they face day to day due to racism.

These events have put a harsh spotlight on the elephant in the room that many of us did not feel safe to talk about. This series is about creating a safe space for us to have serious conversations about improving how we interact with each other because we want to genuinely value individuals and interactions.

We spend most of our lives working. How can we ensure that we all have an equal opportunity to enjoy our time as professionals? What constructs do we need to put in place so that we can shift the inequities for Black people in our global Agile Community?

We’d like to share a quote with you…

“. . . teams where everyone is alike, while comfortable, are not effective. Teams need to bring together a variety of skills, attitudes, and perspectives to see problems and pitfalls, to think of multiple ways to solve problems, and to implement the solutions. Teams need diversity. Conflict is the inevitable companion of diversity. “

— Kent Beck. Extreme Programming Explained: Embrace Change (XP Series)

There are multiple facets of diversity.  Let’s embrace the “inevitable” racial diversity conflict and come together globally to find solutions with concrete actions we can implement.  Our focus is on creating an equitable community fostering interactivity and collaboration that enables everyone to listen to, engage with, and support diverse voices to produce amazing solutions.

This is the beginning of an ongoing conversation, not just one session or one day. We will continue to come together to explore and confront the ugly problems we’re facing to build empathy and design solutions. Throughout this journey, we will continually retrospect, inspect and adapt, and improve as we confront even more questions, have hard conversations, and realize difficult actions.

We invite you to join us on this journey in first understanding and then…

Growing Racial Equity in the Agile Community for Black Lives



April Jefferson

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April Jefferson is an independent agile coach, collaboration facilitator, experience crafter, game creator, and speaker.

She is on the nonprofit board for Agile Open Northwest, chairwoman of the board for Design Action Lab, which focuses on social change, and founder of Women In Agile Open. 

She adds values to the world by nurturing the journey to nourish oneself through generative engagement. 

She enjoys harmonizing mindsets, crafting applied learning experiences, and holding space.

Her hobbies include all things open space, conferencing, board games, card games, and more games. Tabi is an agile storytelling game released this year that she co-created. 

When not coaching organizations, she mentors youth, is active in local agile meetups, works on social change for the community,  speaks at conferences domestically and internationally, organizes or facilitates open space unconferences, and is thinking up more collaboration games.

April currently lives in the United States with her husband and five children.


Antony Marcano

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Antony Marcano is co-founder of RiverGlide, a coaching, consultancy and training firm helping teams and organisations innovate with agility. He has been in software development for nearly 25 years, almost 20 of which have been either working in teams or guiding them and the organisations around them, as they aspire to greater agility. Antony is as much a practitioner as he is coach, consultant and trainer in topics from writing communicative, maintainable code to User Stories & BDD to effective team models, approaching change and Kent Beck’s emerging 3X framework.

His thought leadership is recognised through the references and acknowledgements found in numerous books – including Agile Coaching, Bridging The Communication Gap, Software Craftsmanship Apprenticeship Patterns and Agile Testing. Antony is also published in journals, such as Better Software Magazine, earning him his past tenure there as Technical Editor, successor to people such as Brian Marick and Mike Cohn. Antony is known for his inspiring and thought provoking talks at international conferences, events and within organisations and has regularly lectured as a guest speaker at Oxford University.

For more on Antony, visit, Antony also tweets at @AntonyMarcano.

Ellen Grove

Ellen Grove

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Ellen Grove is the Interim Managing Director of Agile Alliance. Based in Ottawa, Canada, Ellen has been working in software development for over 20 years, moving from software testing to user-centered design to managing development teams to Agile coaching across all sizes and shapes of organizations. After many years of organizing and presenting at Agile events at home and around the world, Ellen was elected to the Agile Alliance board of directors in 2017.

We are listening. We are learning.

Agile Alliance stands firmly and wholeheartedly in support of the Black community, and in the ongoing fight for racial justice and equity around the world.  Racial injustice has no place in our organization and our community.

As we are committed to supporting people who explore and apply Agile, valuing “individuals and interactions” is at the core of what we do. This idea goes beyond our work in software — it’s the basis of human dignity itself.

We understand these issues are not new and that explicitly declaring our commitment to them is overdue. Words are powerful, but we want to complement our words with action.  We are reinforcing the following commitments:

  • We will focus on examining, building and embracing the diversity within our organization and membership.
  • We will use our platform to elevate and engage underrepresented stakeholder voices.
  • We will create space for ourselves and the Agile community to engage in essential discussions, anti-racist learning and action.

We will keep listening. We will keep learning.  We will do better.  We support the Black community.  #BlackLivesMatter


— Agile Alliance Board of Directors