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“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of convenience and comfort, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”

-Martin Luther King, Jr.

Welcome to the 28th annual Columbia Values Diversity Celebration! This year’s Celebration is a free, virtual experience for all in our community.

This website is designed to offer a self-guided approach to viewing the program and exploring the resources. Scroll down this main webpage to view all sections of the virtual experience.


○ Connect with a group of friends, colleagues, or classmates and commit to take on the 2021 experiences together

○ Watch the Program Videos

○ Read/Watch our Student Writings

○ Download the Community Panel Discussion Guide and convene with your group, and use it to continue the conversation

○ Review our list of resources to take action and be inspired throughout the year


Enjoy some of our familiar Columbia Values Diversity Celebration program elements in video form. Closed captioning is available for all videos.

Introduction & Welcome

Hear all about what you can expect from this experience and how to get the most from our program.

Diversity Awards

Mayor Brian Treece announces the recipients of the 2021 individual and group Diversity Awards. Learn about the achievements of the awardees and hear their reactions. The Award is sponsored by the City of Columbia Human Rights Commission

Community Panel

Columbia’s Adonica Coleman leads an engaging panel with local leaders about “our seat at the table.” Listen to the experiences, knowledge, and challenges shared. Download the paired discussion guide to continue the conversation in your own circles.


Because Columbia is a city of many ethnic groups, religions, cultures, and opinions, it is important that all community members know that their story and their voice are important and valued. Local students in 4th-8th grade wrote about diversity and our theme, “Where We Stand.” Three students were selected to share their work in a video and all the submissions are included in our Student Writings Booklet.

Hearing the voices of our young people will challenge and encourage you.


Our community is rich with resources. This collection is not comprehensive, but we hope it gives you some tools for continuing this experience beyond today.

Learn about the local history of minority groups, discrimination, and the fight for rights. Celebrate cultural traditions through local arts experiences. Endeavor to learn more about diverse human experiences and how to eliminate prejudice. Connect with local groups and initiatives providing education, community, or services to underrepresented, minority, or historically at-risk communities. And plan to participate in upcoming events celebrating diversity.


The Inclusive Impact Institute works to create diverse and inclusive communities through collaboration, education and engagement. Hear an update on their work and the next phase of the Journey to Inclusive Excellence.

Contact the City’s Office of Cultural Affairs at