“As mayor of Minneapolis, Betsy Hodges confronted some of the toughest and most important issues of justice, equity, and leadership. One of the most thoughtful and perceptive people I have met in politics and government, she now applies her experience and insight to guide leaders and communities forward on issues of profound importance. As she continues her work going forward, her readiness to challenge white progressives to think in new ways about our racialized reality is especially courageous and important for a country still struggling to confront systemic racism, and I know that her influence and contributions will continue to grow.”
United States Secretary of Transportation | Former Mayor of South Bend
“Betsy Hodges is one of the foremost voices for equity and justice in the United States. Whether the cause is protecting the climate, advocating for Black men and boys, or advancing justice for all, she is a fearless champion for people. We are all fortunate to count Betsy as a co-laborer in the vineyard.”
former Mayor of Gary, IN & current President & CEO of the Chicago Urban League.
“Mayor Hodges speaks with extraordinary wisdom, candor and clarity about race, racism, privilege and our contributions to continuing structures that systematically oppress. We may not always want to hear it. It may make us uncomfortable. But I know how much I learn, and how much she compels self-reflection, every time I hear her speak or read her words. She makes me want to do better, to be better.”
Managing Partner, Emerson Collective. #ChicagoCRED. Author of How Schools Work
“I had the honor of working with Betsy during her Harvard fellowship, where she mentored undergraduates and led a weekly seminar open to the public. Betsy has the amazing ability to discuss complex issues around policy, race, and political strategy with a wide range of audiences, and ensure that each participant feels connected to and excited about the topic at hand. Moreover, as a personal mentor, her enthusiasm, empathy, and wisdom have allowed me and many others to develop the tools needed to thrive in public service and many other fields.”
“Betsy is a dynamic communicator. She is direct but always graciously, which makes her all the more engaging. Most of all, as I’ve seen from sharing time in a classroom with her, she is as willing to learn as she is eager to teach.”
Strategic communications consultant; Board of Directors for RAINN, the nation’s largest anti-sexual violence advocacy organization.
“Mayor Hodges is that rare combination of visionary and pragmatist. She thinks big on how to make things better, but she also knows which nuts, bolts, levers, and wheels need to be assembled and activated to make true change happen. She is one of America’s great thinkers and doers on the subject of cities, mayors, and equity.”
Victor W. Hwang
Founder & CEO, Right to Start
“Betsy Hodges is undertaking a task of enormous importance and difficulty that is also invisible to almost anyone with privilege: encouraging white people to engage with their whiteness, and loving them through that process. She does this with grace, humor and patience; her work fills me with joy and hope.”
Ana Marie Cox
Writer and host of the podcast “With Friends Like These”
“I’ve known Betsy Hodges as an activist, elected official, author, and public speaker. What has remained constant is her deep integrity, remarkable intellect, and wry humor. We need her passion to confront and unwind whiteness, and her compassion for people who want to realize racial equity, in our country’s conversation about race. ”
Community organizer, founder of TakeAction Minnesota, national social justice consultant
“Betsy Hodges shows us that there is deep power in vulnerability. She has a profound ability to call you into your most fundamental and best self, offering accountability from a place of unconditional humanity. Witty, insightful, and most important: relentlessly caring — Betsy invites us to grapple with the hardest parts of ourselves and our society — reminding us that by doing so, we are able to tap into the most beautiful potential of human, and personal, restoration.”
Founder & Executive Director, Lead for Minnesota
“Working with Betsy you get someone that has achieved great things, but you also get someone who has survived great difficulty. She brings her hard-earned wisdom to bear in all her endeavors and her collaborators benefit from this breadth of experience. I routinely rely on Betsy’s guidance and judgement, never once has it led me astray.”
Evan Absher, Esq.
Senior Program Officer, Entrepreneurship, Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation