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Celebrating 25 Years of the Cherry Creek Diversity Conference

Youth Celebrate Diversity
Event organized by Youth Celebrate Diversity

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Youth Celebrate Diversity and its Board of Directors are pleased to invite you to this celebration of 25 years of the Cherry Creek Diversity Conference and its impact throughout Colorado and beyond!

In 1994, Janet Sammons, a history and social studies teacher at Cherry Creek High School, noticed teens across the state were dealing with the same issues and problems, but many times did not have the resources or knowledge to address their concerns. Eighteen schools gathered for the first Cherry Creek Diversity Conference that year; word quickly spread across the state; and 25 years later well over 22,000 high school students and teachers have participated in this unique event.

Most exciting, in 2017 YCD will be launching the first-ever sister event, the Mountain West Diversity Conference, based on the Cherry Creek model.

Join us for this commemorative occasion where you will:

- Be welcomed by Crisanta Duran, Speaker of the House of Representatives of Colorado and alumna of the Cherry Creek Diversity Conference Executive Committee

- Hear from keynote speaker Carlotta Walls LaNier, one of the Little Rock Nine who integrated Central High School in Arkansas in 1957, as she shares her personal experiences as a Civil Rights trailblazer and speaks about why diversity events like the Cherry Creek Diversity Conference are needed now more than ever

- Enjoy a first-class dinner served by one of Denver's finest catering companies at the unique and beautiful venue Cielo at Castle Pines

- Bid on auction items such as courtside Denver Nuggets tickets, luxury spa packages, high-end wine, and more

- Reconnect with friends from past Executive Committees

- Meet community leaders who also share a passion for promoting diversity and inclusion

- Most importantly, guarantee the future of Youth Celebrate Diversity and the Cherry Creek Diversity Conference

Keynote Speaker: Carlotta Walls LaNier

In 1957, at age 14, Carlotta Walls LaNier and eight other students integrated Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas. This act of courage and defiance became the catalyst for change in the American educational system. The Little Rock Nine, as they would eventually be called, became ‘foot soldiers’ for freedom.

In 1968 Lanier earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Northern Colorado and accepted a position at the Denver YWCA. Since then, she has married, raised two children, founded her own real estate company, and worked for 30 years as a real estate broker in Colorado.

In 1999 at the White House, members of Congress and the President bestowed upon Lanier and the other members of the Little Rock Nine the nation’s highest civilian award, the Congressional Gold Medal, for their sacrifice and contribution to the cause of equality.

Carlotta LaNier has been an extremely close and generous friend to the Cherry Creek Diversity Conference, having served as a workshop presenter numerous times over the past two decades; receiving the Human Rights Award from the conference Executive Committee in 1995; as well as serving as a founding Board Member for Youth Celebrate Diversity, the organization carrying the conference's legacy forward and replicating its model across the country.