Active Listening That Leads to Understanding: POLICY & ACTION
Join Fyli for a 45 minute fireside chat with Congresswoman Grace Meng alongside Adeola Adejobi, Founder & CEO of the Avant-Garde Network.
Meet Our Guests:
U.S. Congresswoman Grace Meng
U.S. Congresswoman Grace Meng is serving her fourth term in the United States House of Representatives. Grace represents the Sixth Congressional District of New York encompassing the New York City borough of Queens, including west, central and northeast Queens.
Grace is the first and only Asian American Member of Congress from New York State and the first female Congressmember from Queens since former Vice Presidential nominee Geraldine Ferraro.
Grace is a member of the powerful House Appropriations Committee and its Subcommittees on State and Foreign Operations, Homeland Security, and Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies. The Appropriations Committee is responsible for funding every federal agency, program, and project within the United States government. She also serves on the House Ethics Committee.
Grace is also a Senior Whip and Regional Whip for New York, and a founder and Co-Chair of the Kids’ Safety Caucus, the first bipartisan coalition in the House that promotes child-safety issues. She helped create and serves as a founding member and former Co-Chair of the Quiet Skies Caucus which works to mitigate excessive aircraft noise that adversely affects communities.
Grace has passed several pieces of legislation in law. These include laws about religious freedom, making Queens historic sites part of the National Park Service, striking “Oriental” from federal law and protecting public housing residents from insufficient heat. Also signed into law were her measures to assist veterans and members of the military, and provisions to improve consumer protections and safeguards for children.
In addition, Grace has fought to expand opportunities for communities of color, young people and women, and she secured resources to help local small-businesses.
Born in Elmhurst, Queens, and raised in the Bayside and Flushing sections of the borough, Grace attended local schools, and graduated from Stuyvesant High School and the University of Michigan. She then earned a law degree from Yeshiva University’s Benjamin Cardozo School of Law.
Prior to serving in Congress, Grace was a member of the New York State Assembly. Before entering public service, she worked as a public-interest lawyer.
Adeola Adejobi is an attorney, entrepreneur and speaker. After obtaining her degree in Political Science with a minor in Comparative Women’s Studies from Spelman College, she started her career in the Public Service and Diversity Department at the law firm of Sutherland Asbill & Brennan LLP. Adeola went on to obtain her law degree from Cornell Law School with a specialization in International Legal Affairs. During her time in law school, she worked at Habitat for Humanity International and the Office of Legal Affairs at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City.
Adeola started her career at a nationally recognized firm practicing commercial litigation. In 2011, she launched the Avant-Garde Network. The mission of the Avant-Garde Network is to promote diversity and inclusion through networking, recruiting, career development, training, panels, partnerships and events. More importantly she organically grew the organization to engage over 7,000 members by creating a collaborative ecosystem for professionals of color.
Currently, Adeola is an attorney at New York City’s Housing Preservation and Development Agency (HPD), the largest municipal affordable housing preservation and development agency in the nation. Since 2015, she has chaired the Real Estate Committee for the Metropolitan Black Bar Association. She is also an active member of the New York Bar Association, Council of Urban Real Estate, and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Adeola is the recipient of the several awards, including the E. Randolph Williams Award for Pro Bono Service, the New York State Bar Association’s Empire State Counsel Award and the NV Magazine 2017 Movers and Shakers Award. She is a 2017 Council of Urban Professionals Fellow, a leadership initiative created by the Council of Urban Professionals and she sits on the Advisory Board of the National Black Law Students Association.