YWCA Missoula and EmpowerMT welcome Alex Kim to serve as a joint racial justice engagement specialist. Guided by the recognition that racial equity is at the core of each organizations’ mission, EmpowerMT and the YWCA joined together to develop this collaborative position. Kim will provide support for both agencies’ internal and external racial justice programs, and advance anti-racism work in Missoula.
YWCA Missoula has had a part-time racial justice coordinator for several years. After identifying an increase in the scope and workload of this position, the YWCA approached EmpowerMT with the opportunity to partner and create a full-time position. This position is being funded through the contributions of both YWCA Missoula and EmpowerMT.
“We’re thrilled to develop this position with EmpowerMT, a long-term partner who shares our commitment to racial justice” said Cindy Weese, executive director of YWCA Missoula. “This is an opportunity for us to combine our resources, and have a greater impact than we would separately.”
Kim brings experience in racial justice promotion and community outreach. Previously, he led diversity, equity and inclusion efforts for Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, where he worked to increase representation and access of BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) outdoorspeople in Montana. He also currently designs and facilitates BIPOC outdoor clinics through Missoula Parks and Recreation.
“We are so excited to have Alex’s leadership to strategically and intentionally strengthen racial justice action within our organizations and throughout the community,” said Heidi Wallace, executive director of EmpowerMT.
As racial justice engagement specialist, Kim will work to ensure that racial justice is a primary lens that informs the work of EmpowerMT and YWCA Missoula, and grow community initiatives and partnerships.
“I genuinely believe Missoula can be a place that is prepared for growth and diversity,” said Kim. “As a person of color, a child of immigrants, and the first in my family to attend college, I’m firmly committed to racial justice work. I want to celebrate differences, elevate BIPOC voices, educate the community, and build compassion and empathy for one another.”