Join David Brooks, Peter Block, Sushama Austin-Connor and other social innovators in this Abundant Community Conversation. This event will include music and poetry and attendees will be invited to be active participants in this emerging conversation.

***This event will take place on Zoom. Zoom info will be provided in confirmation email when you register.***

Sushama Austin-Connor speaks with David Brooks & Peter Block about David’s new book, How to Know a Person: The Art of Seeing Others Deeply and Being Deeply Seen.

David Brooks became an Op-Ed columnist for The New York Times in September 2003. He is currently a commentator on “The PBS Newshour,” NPR’s “All Things Considered” and NBC’s “Meet the Press.” He is the author of “Bobos In Paradise: The New Upper Class and How They Got There,” “The Social Animal: The Hidden Sources of Love, Character, and Achievement,” “The Road to Character” and “The Second Mountain.” Mr. Brooks also teaches at Yale University, and is a member of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences. Born on August 11, 1961 in Toronto, Canada, Mr. Brooks graduated a bachelor of history from the University of Chicago in 1983. He became a police reporter for the City News Bureau, a wire service owned jointly by the Chicago Tribune and Sun Times. He worked at The Washington Times and then The Wall Street Journal for 9 years. His last post at the Journal was as op-ed editor. Prior to that, he was posted in Brussels, covering Russia, the Middle East, South Africa and European affairs. His first post at the Journal was as editor of the book review section, and he filled in as the Journal’s movie critic. He also served as a senior editor at The Weekly Standard for 9 years, as well as contributing editor for The Atlantic and Newsweek.

Peter Block is an author, consultant and citizen of Cincinnati, Ohio. His work is about chosen accountability, and the reconciliation of community. Peter is the author of several best selling books. “Community: The Structure of Belonging” came out in 2008 and he co-authored “The Abundant Community: Awakening the Power of Families and Neighborhoods” with John McKnight. His writing is about ways to create workplaces and communities that work for all. They offer an alternative to the patriarchal beliefs that dominate our culture. His work is to bring change into the world through consent and connectedness rather than through mandate and force. He is founder of Designed Learning, a training company that offers workshops designed by Peter to build the skills outlined in his books. Peter serves on the Board of Directors LivePerson, a provider of online engagement solutions, and the Cincinnati Access Fund; he also serves on his local neighborhood council. He is director emeritus of Elementz, an urban arts center in Cincinnati and is on the Advisory Board for the Festival in the Workplace Institute, Bahamas. He was the first Distinguished Consultant-in-Residence at Xavier University. With other volunteers in Cincinnati, Peter began A Small Group, whose work is to create a new community narrative and to bring his work on civic engagement into being. Peter’s office is in Mystic, Connecticut. You can visit his websites at and He welcomes being contacted at He lives with his wife, Cathy Kramer in Cincinnati, and helped raise a bunch of kids.

Sushama Austin-Connor is the interim Executive Director at Faith Matters Network. She served as an administrator at Princeton Theological Seminary for ten years and was the Founding Program Director of the Black Theology and Leadership Institute (BTLI) at Princeton Theological Seminary. Through BTLI and a range of additional program leadership roles at PTS, she has stewarded a high-impact national network of faith leaders, researchers, congregants, and community leaders committed to social justice and community improvement. Prior to her Seminary work, Sushama worked in leadership roles at Harvard Divinity School, Wellesley College, and the United Church of Christ. She was recently ordained in the New Jersey Association of the United Church of Christ. Sushama recently completed a Doctor of Ministry degree through Drew University. Her dissertation, entitled, “A Theology of Liberative Wellness for Black Women Clergy” focused on an adaptive self-care framework and model for pursuing black clergywomen’s physical health and well-being undergirded by Womanist and Black theology.