Join Us!

November 11, 2023

In Person

Rutgers University

Center for Law and Justice

123 Washington Street

Room: CLJ 070

Newark, NJ 07102

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About The Summit

Yes We Adopt is proud to present the 3rd Annual Yes We Adopt: Black Voices Amplified Summit. This in person Summit will be held on Saturday, November 11, 2023 from 8:30 AM – 1:00 PM EST at Rutgers University in Newark, NJ. The Yes We Adopt Summit was created to amplify diverse Black voices touched by adoption or foster care. As the African Proverb states “It takes a village to raise a child,” the intent of this virtual event is to assemble th “village” to share our stories and empower change in recognition of the Black adoption and foster care community.

Too often we see adoption stories in the news and media about non-Black families as saviors, sunshine, and rainbows, however, when Black stories are featured, they are negative stories or highlight the “ungrateful” adoptee.  The Black Voices Amplified Suummit is here to rewrite the narrative.  Yes, we adopt with positive outcomes and hard truths!

Who should attend? In recognition of National Adoption Awareness Month (NAAM), the entire constellation including adoptees, foster alum, birth/first parents, kinship family, adoptive parents, foster parents, prospective adoptive/foster parents, as well as advocates and professionals in adoption and foster care. 


Event Schedule

November 11, 2023
8:30 AM – 1:00 PM EST

8:30 am EST

Breakfast & Mingle

Check-in and start your day with a lite breakfast while meeting with fellow attendees.

9:00 am EST
Opening Remarks

Speaker: Stacey Gatlin, Founder, Yes We Adopt

Welcome to the Black Voices Amplified Summit!

9:30 am EST
Embrace, Empower, Heal

Panelists: Ambition the Poet, Kevin Barnett, Poet Loschil

Be encouraged by this panel of distinguished adoptees as they share their personal stories of self-discovery and resilience. Witness a common thread weaving together identity, empowerment, and healing. This session is an invitation to embrace the power of community and build a collective village in nurturing confident identities.


10:15 AM EST
Speaking Truth to Power

Panelists: Isaac Etter, Joi Fisher-Griffin, Molly McLaurin, Charell Star

Be empowered by this powerful adoptee panel who will share insights on how they are speaking truth to power. Explore how to catalyze change within systems, challenge ideologies, and enhance outcomes for adoptees and foster youth. This powerful session equips you to be an advocate for transformation and systemic change.

10:55 AM EST
11:15 AM EST
Uprooting Secrecy, Stigma and Shame

Panelists: Jamel Hicks, Kim Brown, Valerie Mason Robinson, Tina Still

Be enlighted by this panel of magnetic moms will share their journey of uprooting secrecy, stigma, and shame. Learn firsthand how they break down barriers to foster open and supportive dialogue.  Discover how they are cultivating their child’s roots to build strong identities and thrive. 

12:00 PM EST
The Constellation


Be engaged by these members of the adoption “constellation.” This collection of voices offers varied perspectives and intricate dynamics within the adoption community. Through shared experiences and diverse viewpoints, the aim is to bridge gaps, dismantle misconceptions, and cultivate a space where empathy and support flourish.

12:40 PM EST
Closing Remarks

Speaker: Stacey Gatlin

What’s next for the community?