Office of Equity and Diversity Contact

Mr. Sharif Liwaru
Director, Title IX Coordinator, & OPS Strategic Planning Lead Manager
OPS Equity and Diversity
Phone: 531.299.0307
Fax: 531.299.0367

Equity and Diversity LearnShop's FAQs

LOCATION: Omaha Public Schools, Teacher Administration Center, 3215 Cuming Street, 2nd Floor, Board Room
Omaha, NE 68131.2024
Click here for a map and directions.
MENU: There will be complimentary beverages, a traditional continental breakfast served both mornings, and a lunch on Day 1; Please let us know if you have a food allergy; for the boxed lunch meal.
PRICING: Free.             

SECURITY: Must check-in at east entrance.

What should you bring? If possible, your fully charged mobile device and business cards; this is a great opportunity to network! 
SPONSORED BY: Omaha Public Schools, Office of Equity and Diversity and the Minnesota Humanities Center.   



LearnShop Flyer

To download a PDF flyer of the Equity and Diversity 2017 LearnShop - click here

Equity and Diversity's LearnShop's Registration Deadline

Registration for the Equity and Diversity June LearnShops will close on Friday, May 26, 2017.

Equity and Diversity LearnShop

Equity and Diversity LearnShop's AGENDA

DAY 1 AGENDA: Thursday, June 1st, 2017

8:30 a.m. – 8:45 a.m. Greeting — 2nd Floor, Board Room
8:45 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. Keynote — 2nd Floor, Board Room

9:30 a.m. – 9:45 a.m. Break

9:45 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. 1st Choice: The Visual Matrix: Art-Based Evaluation — 2nd Floor, Board Room
9:45 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. 1st Choice: Student Voice on Experiential Learning — 2nd Floor, Auditorium (marble)
9:45 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. 1st Choice: The Power of Story — 5th Floor, Room 5-141

11:45 a.m. – 12:30 p.m Lunch/Share a story about a student relationship that you cherish and why it's special

12:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. 1st Choice: The Visual Matrix: Art-Based Evaluation — 2nd Floor, Board Room
12:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. 1st Choice: Student Voice on Experiential Learning — 2nd Floor, Auditorium (marble)
12:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. 1st Choice: The Power of Story — 5th Floor, Room 5-141

2:30 p.m. – 2:45 p.m. Break

2:45 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. 1st Choice: Creative Reflection Activity & Check-Out: The Visual Matrix: Art-Based Eval.
2:45 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. 1st Choice: Creative Reflection Activity & Check-Out: Student Voice on Experiential Learn 
2:45 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. 1st Choice: Creative Reflection Activity & Check-Out: The Power of Story — Room 5-141

DAY 2 AGENDA: Friday, June 2nd, 2017

8:00 a.m. – 8:30 a.m. Check-In and Continental Breakfast — 2nd Floor, Board Room

8:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m. 2nd Choice: Overview Session: The Visual Matrix: Art-Based Evaluation - Board Room
8:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m. 2nd Choice: Overview Session: Student Voice on Experiential Learning  - Auditorium
8:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m. 2nd Choice: Overview Session: The Power of Story — 5th Floor, Room 5-141

10:45 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. Break

11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. 2nd Choice: Showcase, Check-Out, and Evaluation —2nd Floor, Board Room

Equity and Diversity LearnShop's PRESENTERS

Sharif Liwaru is the director of the OPS Office of Equity and Diversity. He is the primary Equal Employment Opportunity investigator, Title IX coordinator, Strategic Planning lead manager, AmeriCorps VISTA coordinator, and Omaha Student Voices Council team leader. The degrees he obtained from the University of Nebraska at Omaha are a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Black Studies and a Master of Public Administration Degree in Nonprofit Management. Sharif can be contacted at:

Littleton Alston maintains a sculpture studio in Omaha, where he is also Associate Professor of  Sculpture at Creighton University. His sculptures are included in public and private collections throughout the country, and his work has been exhibited nationally and internationally. His artwork ranges from classical figurative bronze sculptures to abstract stainless steel or mixed media works. He has many public art commissions to his credit, and has designed theatre sets for plays staged by the Great Plains Theatre  Conference in Omaha. In 2015 he received the Omaha Arts and Entertainment Award for best solo exhibit (‘Hannibal’), and his sculptures were featured in the ‘Art Seen’ juried exhibition at Joslyn Art Museum in Omaha. Littleton has completed artist residencies at the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts in Omaha, the Martine Vaugel Studio in France, and the International School of Drawing, Painting and Sculpture in Montecastello di Vibio, Italy. He earned a B.F.A. from Virginia Commonwealth University and an M.F.A. from the Rinehart School of Sculpture at the Maryland Institute College of Art. Littleton can be contacted at:

Andy Johnson is the lead arts-based evaluator with TerraLuna Collaborative. Andy applies his artistic career in theatre, music, performance art, and fiction with new research into neuroaesthetics (the science of how humans perceive art and beauty) to evaluate systems and programs using the methodologies of the arts. Previously, Andy has been adjunct faculty in English at the University of Alabama, an aid worker in Liberia, and a professional stage manager. Andy Johnson is an accomplished writer whose work has been seen in Callaloo, African American Review, and other publications. Over the course of his career, he has developed skills in observation, textual analysis, interviewing, recruiting, positive behavior supports, and arts-based interventions, as well as writing and editing. He holds a BA in Drama from The University of Texas, and an MFA in Creative Writing (Fiction) from The University of Alabama. His first novel, The Through, will be published by Jaded Ibis Press in August 2017. Andy can be contacted at:


Denise Chapman is a theatre practitioner. Over the last ten years she has written, directed, produced, and acted in theatres throughout the Omaha metro area. Her work as a teaching artist has served hundreds of students in OPS. She graduated from Creighton University with a BA in theatre and then went on to receive her MFA from the Theatre Conservatory, at the Chicago College of Performing Arts, at Roosevelt University. She performed with Qwest Educational Programs, touring elementary and middle schools in the greater Chicago land area, and worked as a solo performing artist. When she returned to Omaha in 2006, she worked with Blue Barn’s Witching hour for three years as a co-artistic director/ensemble member, and at the Omaha Community Playhouse as the director of education and outreach. She is an alumni of the fellowship program at the Union for Contemporary Art, and was an artist in residence at the Carver Bank project. She is currently the associate director of the Performing Arts Collective at the Union for Contemporary Art. Denise can be contacted at


Gabrielle Gaines-Liwaru’s passion and plan to create meaningful interdisciplinary art experiences and cultivate participants' appreciation for arts that stretch understanding of themselves and humanity. Emphasizing arts from the African diaspora and knowledge of intercontinental cross-cultural connections, Gabrielle customizes productions which support the discussion of absent or lesser-known narratives. She facilitates workshops for groups to engage in processes that integrate social-cultural-historical awareness with use of individual and combined strengths to reach a point of helpful reflection or action. She has led groups of all ages in learning experiences that empower, through African Culture Connection, Joslyn Art Museum, Malcolm X Center, UNO, MCC, Bellevue University, OPS, Hope Center, and more. Gabrielle can be contacted at



Rose McGee, M.Ed. is an author, storyteller, and educator whose work with Minnesota Humanities allows her to use a creative approach to professional development and community engagement. She focuses on the powerful impact that story circles, and integrating the arts into curriculum have in relationship building. Her circle pedagogical approach helps educators, students, parents, and community tap into their own authentic stories which deepens their understanding for the need to respect and embrace the richness of each other’s culture and humanity. She is author of the plays Kumbayah The Juneteenth Story, Sleep with a Virgin a Perspective on Aids, and the book, Story Circle Stories. Nationally, she is featured in the TEDx Talk – The Power of Pie, the television talk show The Real, and PBS documentary A Few Good Pie Places. Rose can be contacted at: