Equity & Inclusion Department

The Equity & Inclusion Department will look within all aspects of City government to closely examine policies, practices, budget allocations, and programs that may perpetuate institutional racism and systemic inequities. 

The department is responsible for:

  • Assessment of the racial equity and inclusion efforts within City government.
  • Development and implementation of an Equity Plan.
  • Development and implementation of equity and inclusion training for City staff.
  • Monitoring City equity efforts and initiatives.
  • Reporting outcomes of the Equity Plan.

Learn More About Our Work

Advancing Racial Equity in the City of Durham: Our Approach

Advancing Racial Equity in the City of Durham: Our Approach

Normalize, Organize, Operationalize

We are:

  • Normalizing conversations about race and equity
  • Organizing to do racial equity work
  • And operationalizing by implementing our plan and visualizing the future we will create together

We Are Normalizing Conversations About Racial Equity by: Creating Common Understanding

We Are Normalizing Conversations About Racial Equity by: Creating Common Understanding


  • Establishing a shared language
  • Creating vision & mission statements
  • Training city staff
  • Acknowledging the role of government in creating inequities

Our Racial Equity Vision

Our Racial Equity Vision:


Durham is a vibrant community in which all residents and employees thrive with power and purpose. Racial equity is an embedded principle, shared economic prosperity is a reality, and race is not a predictor of outcomes

Our Racial Equity Mission

Our Racial Equity Mission:


The City of Durham intentionally identifies racial inequities, engages the community, and uses a collaborative approach in creating solutions, to ensure race no longer stands as a determinant of outcomes and opportunities

Organizing for Racial Equity: Departments & Teams

We are Organizing for Racial Equity by: Putting People in Place to Do the Work


  • Equity & Inclusion Department
  • Racial Equity Core Team
  • Racial Equity Implementation Team
  • Departmental Racial Equity Teams

Organizing for Racial Equity: Building Capacity

We Are Organizing for Racial Equity by: Building Capacity


  • Developing a racial equity action plan
  • Training city staff
  • Creating racial equity decision making models
  • Building data analysis skills

City of Durham Racial Equity Action Plan Focus

City of Durham Racial Equity Action Plan Focus


  • Workforce Equity
  • Communications & Engagement
  • Contracting & Procurement
  • Racial Equity Tools & Training

We are Operationalizing Racial Equity by: Taking Action

We Are Operationalizing Racial Equity by: Taking Action


  • Focusing our efforts on creating access and opportunity
  • Implementing the racial equity action plan
  • Utilizing training and tools to integrate explicit consideration of racial equity in decision making
  • Working to remove systemic barriers and create more equitable outcomes for all

Our Racial Equity Decision Making Tool: The Questions That Inform Our Decisions

Our Racial Equity Decision Making Tool: 

The Questions That Inform Our Decisions


  1. What is being considered? What are the desired results and outcomes?
  2. What is the data? What does the data tell us? Who will this benefit? Who will it burden?
  3. Have we heard from the whole community? What does the community want?
  4. What are the unintended consequences? What are our strategies to mitigate harm?
  5. How will we hold ourselves accountable?

CONTRACT & COMPLIANCE DIVISION

The Contract & Compliance Division is responsible for the implementation of the City’s Equal Business Opportunity Program (EBOP) and Small Local Business Enterprise Program (SLBEP). 

The Contract & Compliance Division has relocated to the Finance Department. Link to Contract & Compliance Webpage.

  1. headshots of John Allore and Sharon Williams

    City of Durham Announces New Budget and Equity & Inclusion Directors

    City Manager Wanda Page has named John Allore as the new director of the Budget & Management Services Department and Sharon Williams as the new director of the Equity & Inclusion Department. Both appointments are effective immediately. Read on...
  2. City of Durham & Community Home Trust logos

    New City of Durham Down Payment Assistance Program Accepting Applications March 28

    Starting March 28, eligible Durham residents who are in the market to buy their first home can apply for up to $20,000 for down payment and closing cost assistance from a new City of Durham program. Read on...
  3. Budget team members hold up the What Works Cities award in front of City Hall/City logo

    Bloomberg Philanthropies Recognizes Durham for Using Data to Improve Residents’ Lives

    The City of Durham is one of the first 50 cities to achieve Bloomberg Philanthropies’ What Works Cities Certification in recognition of its use of data and evidence to guide decision-making. Learn more about the work that earned this designation. Read on...
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May 2022

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