City of Geneva Hosts 'The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks About Race' Online Book Discussion

City of Geneva Hosts ‘The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks About Race’ Online Book Discussion

The city of Geneva is doing its part to continue important discussions about race by inviting residents to participate in a virtual discussion in March regarding the bestselling book “The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks About Race.”

Geneva Mayor Kevin Burns and Traci O’Neal Ellis, the Illinois Math and Science Academy’s chief human resources and chief equity officer/chief legal officer, will lead the online discussion starting at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, March 20. Following the discussion, the program will be open to participants for a Q&A about the topics covered in the book.

The book discussion is open to the public, but registration is required. All registered attendees will receive an email with a link to join the Zoom discussion the week of the event. Participants are encouraged to have read the book in advance of the March 20 discussion. Those who have not are welcome to tune in, however, they may not be able to fully participate in the Q & A portion.

Edited by Jesmyn Ward, the book gathers a series of contributions from thinkers and writers to speak on contemporary race, racism and a better future.

Ellis is a speaker and workshop facilitator on matters of diversity, equity and inclusion, race/racism, and social justice. She was named the 2018 city of Elgin Human Relations Commission’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award winner. Ellis also is the published author of “The Exceptional Negro: Racism, White Privilege and the Lie of Respectability Politics.”

The city would like to give special thanks to its Strategic Plan Advisory Committee and the Geneva Public Library District for helping organize and support the book discussion.

Geneva Public Library members may contact the library to put a hold on a print, audio or electronic copy of “The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks About Race.” Other options include purchasing a copy from a local retailer, such as Harvey’s Tales, Barnes & Noble, or Town House Books.

For those wanting to continue learning after the March 20 event, the library has created recommended reading lists for children through adults. More information about the Library’s Book Club Bundles can be found on the library’s website.

As a reminder, residents interested in the book discussion and continuing the conversation about race, equity, and inclusion may also be interested in the Geneva Cultural Arts Commission virtual film screening of “Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am” and online discussion scheduled for Sunday, Feb. 28. Registration and more details are available on the city’s website at

About the city of Geneva

Located 40 miles west of Chicago along the Fox River, Geneva is home to 21,495 residents and serves as the seat of Kane County government. The City’s character is found in its distinct architecture, historic buildings and picturesque natural areas. With festivals and events year-round, Geneva is a special destination for unique and award-winning shopping, restaurants, galleries and more.

Home to excellent schools, library, parks and a vibrant cultural arts scene, Geneva continues to be one of the premier cities in the Chicago area to live, work, play and raise a family. For the latest news, visit the city’s website at

SOURCE: city of Geneva news release