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Fort Wayne, Ind. – Registration is now open for the free 2024 Fair Housing Summit, which features Joshua V. Barr, Esq., Chief Strategist and President of Raising the Barr, LLC. Barr is an Emmy and national award-winning transformational leader who collaborates with organizations that are committed to transforming their cultures and improving socioeconomic outcomes for their community stakeholders.


In 2015, Joshua revitalized the Des Moines Civil and Human Rights Commission, preventing its closure and making it an integral part of the local government. He launched the Bridging the Gap project, promoting community dialogues that led to nearly 30 new policies promoting opportunity and justice citywide. In 2020, Joshua released the Emmy award-winning documentary Breaking Bread, Building Bridges, which featured nearly 40 strangers who were paired based on their differences to share dinners over several months. Barr is renowned for his belief in internal change and works tirelessly with organizations, communities, and individuals to foster holistic improvement.

The Summit is hosted by the City of Fort Wayne’s Metropolitan Human Relations Commission and the City of Fort Wayne’s Office of Housing & Neighborhood Services and is set for April 24, 2024 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Memorial Coliseum Conference Center, 4000 Parnell Ave. Lunch is provided and there is no charge for the event.

"Racism and discrimination are present in all communities, not just Fort Wayne," stated Nikki Quintana, Executive Director of the Metropolitan Human Relations Commission. "It is crucial that we educate ourselves and engage in conversations that help ensure fair housing."

"The 2024 Fair Housing Summit will explore key community issues, including overcoming barriers, addressing housing inequality, and the need for safe, affordable housing citywide," said Kelly Lundberg, Director of the Office of Housing & Neighborhood Services.

Anyone interested in the event should visit www.fortwaynemetro.org/fhevent for more information and to register. Attendance is limited to the first 300 people.

In addition to Joshua V. Barr, Esq., attendees will have the chance to hear from fair housing experts during various workshops. The topics of these workshops include:

  • How Realtors are Overcoming Barriers to Fair Housing
  • Innovative Housing Panel
  • Not Your Grandparents Suburbs
  • Common Fair Housing Violations Involving People of Color
  • Harassment, Intimidation, and Hate Crimes - the Impact of Fair Housing Laws
  • Disability Legal Update
  • Discussing Solutions to Address Housing Inequities

The Gold sponsors for the event are Premier Bank and UPSTAR Alliance of REALTORS®,  along with Silver sponsor First Source Bank and Bronze sponsors Lake City Bank and Old National Bank.

 Fort Wayne Metro’s mission is to enforce civil rights laws and empower the citizens of Fort Wayne through education on diversity and discrimination issues. The City’s Office of Housing & Neighborhood Services works to attract and support housing investment throughout the community and expand access to safe, quality, affordable housing. The department also partners with local non-profit organizations to address critical needs in the community.

The work that provided the basis for this publication was supported by funding under a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The substance and findings of the work are dedicated to the public. The author and publisher are solely responsible for the accuracy of the statements and interpretations contained in this publication. Such interpretations do not necessarily reflect the views of the Government.