I have had the honor of working with Michael (Mike) Hill, Jr., for the past four years. Mike came highly recommended from a respected equity trainer who has done extensive work in Vermont schools and communities. As part of our Speakers’ Series for Chittenden County mentoring programs, Mike offers a compelling annual training to allow mentoring coordinators and mentors to engage in learning around racial equity and its role in mentoring. Additionally, Mike was invited to lead a workshop at the annual Vermont Mentoring Symposium (hosted by MENTOR Vermont), which was very well received. Perhaps the deepest appreciation I have for Mike is through his work visioning, planning, and then facilitating a Professionals of Color Empowerment Cipher in the South Burlington School District, a space for healing, shared knowledge of intersectional experiences, and professional growth through the lens of self-care and self-work. As a trainer highly skilled in navigating audiences just beginning racial equity work as well as those well-versed in anti-racist practices, Mike creates a safe space for learners while inviting them to explore their bias and sit in the discomfort that accompanies authentic growth. Mike is a true visionary, and his work is rooted in love and justice and always youth-centered. I have loved working with him and value his professional and compassionate approach to his work.
- Susie Merrick
South Burlington School District and Community Member
Mike is awesome and knows much about alcohol, cannabis, and other drugs (ACOD). He has a way of talking to young adults that is personable and authentic that allows for honest conversation, which is important when talking about sensitive subjects such as substance use. He easily makes connections and builds trust with college students by asking questions and listening to their experiences without judgement. He is very relationship-oriented in his work and it shows, especially with students of color who feel comfortable talking to him about their experiences in college with someone they trust.
Mike seamlessly integrates racial awareness and health equity into every topic and conversation in a way that elicits deeper understanding for everyone. His strong relationship-building skills allow him to push conversations, especially with white people, to center the experiences of people with marginalized identities in a white supremacist society (Black, Indigenous, People of Color, LGBTQ+ folks, women, people with disabilities, etc) and keep the focus on breaking down inequitable barriers and policies. Mike would be a great asset to your team if you are truly ready to put in the WORK needed to push yourself and your team towards a more equitable future.
- Jenna Emerson
Health & Sexuality Educator at UVM
I have had the pleasure of co-facilitating with Michael Hill several times on topics including implicit bias, microaggressions, identity, privilege, and restorative practices in mediation. What I appreciate most about co-facilitating with Michael is his strong background in mental health and mentoring youth of color, both of which frame his thinking around structural inequity. He draws upon his own life experiences to relate to those marginalized by social inequity, he presents information in accessible and honest ways, and he has a great sense of humor which allows him to connect with people on a personal level. Co-facilitating with Michael has helped keep me on my own learning edge as an equity consultant, as he generously offers up his perspectives and asks thoughtful questions. In addition to our professional partnerships, Michael and I have also become close friends over the years. He is someone whom I deeply trust and appreciate having in my life. I confidently refer my own clients to him when I'm unavailable, or when his skill set is a better fit for their needs than my own. Michael is an educator by nature, and has gained the respect of other educators, students, community leaders, administrators, and peers across the state.
– Dr. Rebecca Haslam
SeedtheWay, LLC Founder
Mike Hill is a talented, thoughtful Equity Professional with a wide skill set complemented by sincere passion and commitment. Mike is an excellent educator, mentor, and role model. I have worked alongside Mike in various settings since 2011. I am continually impressed by Mike’s abilities in working with young people. His engaging ways, easy rapport, and ability to make complex topics understandable, relevant, and alive are stellar. Mike is an excellent facilitator with both youth and adults. I always look forward to opportunities to co-facilitate with Mike. Working with Mike is a pleasure for many reasons, including that Mike is easy to work with, he prepares well in advance, and most importantly I learn from him every time we work together. I highly recommend Michael Hill.
- Kathy Johnson
CQ Strategies, LLC
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