Press Resources

2018 Conference Images

Conference Co-Chairs

Visit the 2018 Conference Site

About the Conference

The Black Communities Conference (aka #BlackCom2019) is a vibrant and uniquely important global gathering that will take place at the historic Carolina Theatre and Durham Convention Center in downtown Durham, N.C. Sept. 9-11, 2019. The conference’s core mission is to foster collaboration among Black communities and universities for the purpose of enhancing Black community life and furthering the understanding of people of African descent. It will feature nearly 300 panel discussions, local tours, film screenings, workshops, keynotes and other events.

The conference is hosted by the Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise and the Institute of African American Research, along with the Center for the Study of the American South, Hayti Heritage Center and St. Joseph’s Historic Foundation, NCGrowth, North Carolina Central University and UNC University Libraries.

Press Contact

Sue DiMaggio External Affairs Associate, Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise 919.962.8853

Conference Website

Conference Agenda (in progress)


When and where will the conference be held?

September 9-11, 2019, at the historic Carolina Theatre in downtown Durham, with a select number of events at other venues within the city.

What can I expect?

#BlackCom2019 is the premier collaborative gathering for fostering the health and well-being of Black communities and their residents. The conference encompasses a unique blend of cutting-edge academic scholarship, engaging case studies, how-to workshops, arts and media presentations and networking. Topics run the gamut from wealth-building in African American communities to the meaning of black identity in Haiti to self-care as a tool for healing and wellness to the development of nearly 5,000 historic Rosenwald Schools in the early 20th century. In addition, there are ample opportunities for networking and touring sites rich with Black history and culture.

Who can attend the conference?

Community members and leaders, nonprofit and government employees, university faculty members, students and others – in short, anyone with an interest in understanding and enhancing Black community life in the 21st century and beyond.

How much does it cost to attend?

Single-day admission runs from $50 for students and community members to $100 for tenured and tenure-track faculty. Full conference (three-day) discounts are also available.


About Our Hosts

Center for the Study of the American South

Hayti Heritage Center/St. Joseph’s Historic Foundation

Institute of African American Research

Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise

North Carolina Central University

UNC University Libraries

Conference Organizer Bios


2018 Conference Highlights, Part 1

2018 Conference Highlights, Part 2

2018 Conference Sessions Audio (21 sessions)


Kenan Institute News

Conference organizers Mark Little and Karla Slocum on WUNC radio’s The State of Things with Frank Stasio

UNC-TV’s Black Issues Forum’s two-part coverage of the 2018 conference












Clinical Scholars

Downtown Durham, Inc.

M&F Bank

PNC Bank

UNC Carolina Seminars

UNC Institute for the Arts & Humanities

Black Communities: A Conference for Collaboration is Hosted By