Speaker series added to music festival

Politician, diplomat, and activist Andrew J. Young Jr. is among those scheduled to speak in July at the inaugural “Un-Told Speaker Series.” 

The program, presented through a collaboration between Fifth Third Bank and Visit Cincy (formerly the Cincinnati USA Convention & Visitors Bureau), will focus on stories of diversity and empowerment from nationally acclaimed speakers.

The new speaker series events will take place July 22-23 to coincide with the return of the Cincinnati Music Festival, already one of the region’s largest cultural celebrations and tourism draws.

“Diversity, equity and inclusion are integral to how we connect our residents and our community to the visitors who travel here,” said Julie Calvert, president & CEO of Visit Cincy. “The Un-Told Speaker Series presents influential voices discussing important topics that will inform, engage and connect us in powerful ways. The more we expand diverse and inclusive dialogue in our region, the more we deliver on our mission to create a destination that’s welcoming to all.”

The series will take place at venues in Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky. Admission will be free with registration, thanks to the Fifth Third partnership.

“Fifth Third Bank is proud to join with Visit Cincy’s Vibe Cincinnati platform to launch the Un-Told Speaker Series,” said Kala Gibson, Fifth Third’s chief corporate responsibility officer. “This is an incredible opportunity to hear and learn from cultural icons who have helped shape our communities, and to benefit from the power and influence of storytelling. We are honored to support diverse opportunities such as this for Greater Cincinnati residents and visitors to engage and cultivate new ideas.” 

Speakers are to include: 

  • The Uncle Nearest Story and Uncovering your African Ancestry. Panel discussion to feature Victoria Early Butler, Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey; Joi Brown, Jefferson County Memorial Project; and Dr. Gina Paige, AfricanAncestry.com. 11 a.m. July 22, Westin Cincinnati, 21 E. Fifth St., Cincinnati.
  • Women’s Liberation Workshop. 9 a.m. July 23, Contemporary Arts Center, 44 E. Sixth St., Cincinnati. 
  • Raekwan the Chef, founder of Wu-Tang. 11 a.m. July 23, Westin Cincinnati. 
  • Andrew Young, Jr. The former pastor, civil rights leader, U.S. representative, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and Atlanta mayor speaks at 2 p.m. July 23, Northern Kentucky Convention Center, 1 W. Rivercenter Blvd., Covington, Kentucky. 

Those wishing to attend the events must register beginning June 27 through VisitCincy.com. 

“Visit Cincy’s Vibe Cincinnati platform empowers diverse communities through tourism,” said Jason Dunn, group vice president of diversity, equity and inclusion at Visit Cincy. “Fifth Third’s partnership will help expand the significance of the music festival experience by adding conscious programming that will inspire generations to come and welcome locals and visitors to Vibe within our region.

A study commissioned by Visit Cincy concluded that the Cincinnati Music Festival, presented by P&G, has an annual economic impact of $107.5 million.

Additional events that complement the weekend include Cincy Soul at Fountain Square and the Queen City Foundation 5K. This year, the Cincinnati Black Music Walk of Fame at The Banks will also be dedicated during the festival weekend.

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