RARE Newsletter #1

January 5th, 2021

RARE Update
RARE is making good progress with its two primary projects, the VRTP Documentary Video “In Black and White” and the Funding of the James A. Davis Jr. Memorial Scholarship. A decision was made along with the Principal (Kristina Rodgers) and staff at RHS to award the first scholarships in 2021 vs 2022. This will allow us to help two RHS students of color with $5000 scholarships one year earlier than was originally planned.
Thanks for your donations!!!

We have just recently established the RARE Leadership Team. The Team will be comprised of 7-8 RARE Steering Committee Members along with some Subject Matter Experts (SME). This team will be responsible for determining RARE’s vision for the future and its organizational structure. The Leadership Team will have weekly zoom sessions and will start meeting on Thursday, Jan 14th.

Over the past several months, RARE has been intensively raising funds for the James A Davis Jr Memorial Scholarship for economically disadvantaged students of color at Roosevelt High School. For more information on the scholarship please click here.

As of end-December, over $115,000 had been contributed by over 130 individual donors, representing a wide range of supporters from inside and outside the RHS community. A substantial portion was initially donated by Steering Committee members of RARE, setting an example for others to follow and showing their commitment to this compelling cause. Many members of the RHS Class of 1971, which is approaching its 50th reunion this coming year, have made donations, several at the Gold Level of $5,000 or more. RARE is now actively reaching out to other year classes of RHS alumni. The goal is to reach $250,000 in donations by September 2021, so that the program will be funded “in perpetuity,” utilizing return on invested donations to fund two scholarships per year of $5,000 each. Golden Grads, a 501c3 non-profit formed by RHS alumni, manages funds for scholarships at RHS, and is the fiscal agent for this project.


The documentary chronicles the experiences of students who came to Roosevelt High School via the Seattle School’s Voluntary Public Racial Transfer Program between 1970 and 1973 is moving forward. We are connecting with and interviewing program alumni as well as teachers and administrators from that era, as well as students from the Roosevelt district who transferred to Garfield High School during that time.

ROOSEVELT HIGH SCHOOL IN BLACK AND WHITE is designed to capture this uniquely raw and powerful slice of living history with participants sharing recollections of their high school experiences in the context of today’s racial reckoning. We are deeply grateful for the support that the documentary has received from both Roosevelt High School and the Roosevelt High School Foundation, as well as assistance from the Seattle Film Institute.

RARE Zoom Sessions

RARE is changing and expanding its Zoom Session format. Going forward RARE Donors will be invited to join members of the RARE Steering Committee to listen in and to participate in one of our bi-monthly Zoom Discussion Sessions. The objective of these discussion sessions is to educate, inform and have a stimulating dialogue on issues regarding racial equity. We want to have difficult discussions around racism, look deeply inside ourselves, where real change begins, and expose how systemic racism impacts our lives and community in nearly every respect. The first joint RARE Steering Committee and RARE Donor Zoom Discussion Session will be Monday, January 18th at 5PM (PST).

RARE Zoom Session-Monday, Jan 18th 5PM (PST). All donors are invited to participate.

Topic: “What causes people to become racist”
Presenter: Keith Thompson-RHS 1971- Author of A Journey into Value Systems: Cracking the Genius Code
“Solving racism is a huge undertaking. I have used the value systems as a method to crack the code of why we have so much racism in our country.

We will discuss:

– Introduction to The Eight Value Systems: Career / Personal Development; Emotional / Mental; Family; Financial / Wealth; Health; Physical; Social; Spiritual
– What are belief systems? How do we define them?
– A look into the Family Value Systems: Dr. Seuss – The Star Belly Sneetches
– A look into the Social Value Systems: The television programming – Black Lives Matter, so All Lives Matter – Part 3. The transition out of racism and into a prosperous lifestyle

Keith Thompson Bio:
– Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist – (1980)
– Protegee Enlighten Millionaire Institute (2005)
– Professional Health Coach (2007)

Visit MyValueSystems website prior to the discussion session.

Please click here to visit the new RARE blog page. We have two very interesting articles so far. The first, by Jane Harris Nellams (’73), provides a poignant explanation of the images used on the RARE website. The second, by Lea Vaughn (’71), gives a empathetic and hopeful response to Lauren Kirkpatrick’s recent column about racism in the Bellevue Public Schools.

Let us know if you have topics you would like to see addressed, or if you would like to author an article!

Donors Wall Plans
The Donors Wall is a popular page on the RARE website. We are improving the design and making it easier to use. You will be able to filter the names by class year and search by name. Also, we will add an In Memoriam section. Please let us know if there are any other enhancements you would like to see.

Suggested Readings

· How Black Lives Matters Shifted America in 2020
· KING 5 announces “Facing Race”, a racism and social justice series
· History of African America and of people of African ancestry around the world
· Tyrese on colorism, “Legendary” single, police brutality against Black Americans
· The history of identity, contributions, and challenges experienced by Asian Americans
· NPR’s Ailsa Chang speaks with filmmaker Renee Tajima-Peña about the new PBS documentary series, Asian Americans

How to Contact Us
Please click here to reach out to us for any reason!