Founder's Message

Updated: Sep 17, 2021


Photo of Paul S. Bracy
Paul S. Bracy

I want to welcome you to the Dock C. Bracy Center for Human Reconciliation by providing some background to its creation.

First, what do we mean by human reconciliation? Reconciliation is the restoration or the creation of friendly relations. The Center’s long-term goal is to help create friendly relations across the planet. In this regard we think globally, while acting locally where we have control and/or influence.


Examples of obstacles to human reconciliation are acts and systems of human oppression-- such as racism, sexism, religious bias, ableism, elitism, cultural domination, colonialism, and slavery—that have the effect of subjugating the human spirit. The primary focus of the Center, currently, is the eradication of racism.


I have three motivations that led to the creation of the Dock C. Bracy Center.


Professional:


For over 50 years I have been actively involved in attempts to create equity and fairness in all types of organizations, beginning in the United States Air Force where I was involved in developing and delivering race relations workshops for 5 years. A constant question from participants over the years was, “What can I do?” My response most times was to learn more and walk the talk. Though it was a truthful response it always left me unsatisfied. There is no adequate short answer to the question.


When I retired from the military and began working in civilian society, I saw and experienced the iniquities and the unfairness of race and sex discrimination in for-profit and non-profit organizations. Eventually I had the opportunity to work with firms whose focus was creating welcoming work environments through diversity and inclusion workshops. During 19 years of conducting these workshops and executive coaching both nationally and internationally, I was still confronted with the same question, “What can I do?” I knew, as did my colleagues, that no organization wanted us to assist people to answer that question.


I created the Dock C. Bracy Center to help people find the answer their question, “What can I do?” and support them to be successful in acting. The Center uses an inclusive problem-solving approach to answer the question and to aid participants to develop a personal plan of action.


There are no short cuts to the eradication of racism and other forms of oppression. Our introductory learning session – Eradicating Racism: A Path Forward-- is designed to aid you in understanding more about your emotions and the thoughts that are linked to them. Also, this learning session will give you a greater appreciation for the complexity of racism. Check us out, see how we can assist and support you and your community.


Personal:


In 1969 when I got involved in the military’s race relations education program, I had two beautiful multiracial toddlers whose mother is Okinawan. I wanted a better world for them, one where their racial identity would not matter, an environment where they would be free and supported to find out how good they could be. I felt my involvement, along with others, would change our country for the better.


I imagine if you are a parent, expect to be a parent, a grandparent or great grandparent you most likely share a similar desire and vision for all the children you love dearly.

Today, I have 5 adult children, 2 adult stepchildren, 9 grandchildren, and one great-grandchild and the world I envisioned for my two toddlers is still wanting.


The issues involved in human oppression are complex and eradicating racism takes learning and working together to create that desired environment. The more we find our voices and influence others to join with us, the greater are our chances of creating a more caring world for our children and ourselves. Check us out, see how we can create that future together for all children.


Community – giving back:


I have had a lot of opportunities to learn, to grow personally and professionally, and there were people who supported and nurtured me. Today I am a better, wiser person with experiences, knowledge and skills that may be helpful to others. The Center allows me and others who want to give back to their community a place and vehicle to do that. The development of the Dock C. Bracy Center would not have been possible if others, such as the members of our leadership team, did not step up.


A special thank you to the Martha’s Vineyard team (Robert Tankard, Sandra Pimentel, Walter Collier, Ruth Major, and Rex Jarrell) whose support and commitment led to the development of the Friends for Life – USA learning session series, Eradicating Racism: A Path Forward. Also, to Duncan Walton who spent time listening to me, encouraging me, and supporting me when I was unsure.


Most importantly to my family and friends, past and present, thank you for your support, nurturance, guidance, and love.


The healing of this country is in our hands, let’s join hands and give our children a future where all children are valued no matter how they come into this world, and have equal access to health, happiness, education, personal freedom, and economic security.


Expanded comments on Dock Columbus Bracy:

He is my great-grandfather, whom I knew and was 13 years old when he passed. Dock, like so many other freed people managed to create a life for himself and family with the tyranny of white supremacy ever present. He managed to send his son to Morehouse College and his daughters to Spellman College. Dock’s commitment to truth, perseverance, education, family, and community are qualities worth emulating and are necessary for human reconciliation. He demonstrated in his life what one person can do from lowly beginnings, when they have vision, commitment, and courage.

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