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Men of Color CNG


Who we are:

The Cornell University Men of Color Colleague Network Group provides a professional support system within the staff, faculty, and administrator community to increase the recruitment and retention of men of color.

What we do:

Our group meets monthly for lunch and socializing. Our meetings usually feature a presentation or facilitated discussion. We also network with external groups and organize events, fundraisers, and volunteer opportunities to support our community.

  • Events & Activities

    Monthly Meetups

    Join us on the first Monday of every month from 12:00-1:00 PM EST! Be sure to sign up for our mailing list using the red signup button above to learn what's coming up next.

    2023 Monthly Meeting Schedule:

    • January 2
    • February 6
    • March 6
    • April 3
    • May 1
    • June 5
    • July 13
    • August 7
    • September 11
    • October 2
    • November 6
    • December 4
  • Announcements

    Info will be posted here soon!

  • Meet Our Board

    Reginald White

    Reginald White: Chair

    Reginald White is the HR Director for the Research Division reporting to the Vice Provost for Research at Cornell University. In this role, he manages a team that provides HR services to the OVPR staff that includes a wide range of research centers. In addition, he provides coaching to faculty and staff on a variety of matters including leadership and diversity and inclusion.   Reginald is an active Cornell Alum currently serving as Immediate Past President, Human Ecology Alumni Board and member at large of Mosaic. Over the years, he has served on a number of boards including the Boston and Charlotte Symphony Orchestras, Social Venture Partners, Charlotte and a host of others. He received his B.S. in Human Development at Cornell University and his Executive M.B.A. at Boston University.

    Carlo Lindo

    Carlo Lindo: Vice-Chair

    Carlo Lindo is from Queens, NY but moved to Ithaca to work at Cornell in January 2016. He is currently an academic advisor in the College of Arts & Sciences, as well as the Posse Program Manager working with Posse Scholars from Chicago, IL. He is a graduate of Babson College '09 and, prior to working at Cornell, worked at The Posse Foundation's NYC Office for five years.

    Ben Ortiz

    Ben Ortiz: Community Liaison

    Ben Ortiz is from the Assistant Curator of the Cornell Hip Hop Collection, which is part of Cornell University Library's Rare and Manuscript Collections division. The CHHC is the world's most extensive research archive on Hip Hop music and culture and is over a decade old. Prior to his current role, he worked at Cornell in other capacities including coordinator of K-12 Outreach in the Cornell Public Service Center, New York State Higher/Educational Opportunity Program (H/EOP) Counselor in the Office of Minority Educational Affairs (today called OADI- Office of Academic Diversity Initiatives), and residence hall director for the Risley Residential College for the Creative and Performing Arts, as well as Clara Dickson Hall, and the Multicultural Living-Learning Unit (McLLU). Ben is also active in Ithaca's local music scene. He can be found rocking dance floors as his alter ego, DJ ha-MEEN, or playing congas with the Damn Yanquis Latin Jazz band. He also is the founder/director of the Ithaca DJ Festival, and serves on the board of directors for the Ithaca Festival, the city's oldest and largest music festival.

    Derrick Barrett

    Derrick Barrett: Member-At-Large

    Derrick joined the Cornell community in February 2016 and has been fortunate to have the opportunity to explore his passion for finance supporting the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and now the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation. He currently serves as a Budget and Reporting Specialist and is part of a team responsible for managing the Research Division’s annual Facilities and Administrative budget.

    Having been born and raised in the Ithaca area, Derrick has deep ties to the community. He attended Ithaca College, just a few miles from his childhood home and elementary school, where he received a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Finance. He has been a Board Member for the Tompkins Employees Federal Credit Union and a Member-at-Large in the Men of Color Colleague Network Group here at Cornell for the past two years. He and his wife welcomed their first child in June of 2020. While spending time with family is a priority for Derrick, he also enjoys golfing at local courses and watching sports with friends - Go Big Red!

    Marcus Brooks

    Marcus Brooks: Member-At-Large

    Marcus Brooks is the Cornell Team & Leadership Center Coordinator for Cornell Outdoor Education. He comes to us from New York City where he earned both his Bachelor's degree and MBA from Columbia University. He uniquely combines his formal business skill sets in leadership, organizational development, entrepreneurship, strategy, and finance with his deep passion for human development through the great outdoors and experiential learning. Marcus has led workshops on the topics of women entrepreneurs, negotiation strategies, and creativity and innovation.

    Karel Hilversum

    Karel Hilversum: Member-At-Large

    Karel Hilversum comes to us from his native Puerto Rico where he has been designing and delivering challenge course programming, outdoor adventure education, and leadership workshops for 20 years. He has lead hundreds of team & leadership development programs to worldwide audiences. Karel holds a MS in Experiential Education and Educational Leadership from Minnesota State University at Mankato and is currently a PhD candidate in Organizational Leadership at the Chicago School of Professional Psychology. Karel's enthusiasm for this work, along with his experience in the field makes him an excellent addition to our Cornell Outdoor Education team. When not leading workshops, he enjoys volunteering in Scouting, adventure travel, and caving expeditions.

    Aaron King

    Aaron King: Member-At-Large

    Greetings! My name is Aaron King (he/him) and I currently serve as House Assistant Dean for William Keeton House. As a first-gen/low income college graduate raised in rural Arkansas, I’ve since had professional stints in NYC, Massachusetts, the SF Bay Area, and New Jersey before settling in here in upstate NY.  Aside from work and family, I’m also connected to the local running scene, so hit me up if you are interested at any level of walk/jog/run. It is a great way to both manage wellness and check out the local area. I’m also always looking for folks to get some pickup basketball (or any sports) or thrift shopping in with. As member at large, I look forward to using my understanding of and connections within the university to welcome, support, and sustain Cornell professionals crossing paths with the MCCNG. I’m listening for ideas, taking feedback, and looking forward to meeting you.

    Brandon Senior

    Brandon Senior: Member-At-Large

    Brandon Senior has worked at Cornell University for almost seven years: the first four in the Office of Academic Diversity Initiatives as an advisor and the last two and a half in CALS Student Services. His focus has been working with New York State Opportunity students and has since expanded to all undergraduate students within the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS). In his current role he assists students academically, making sure his students meet college requirements for graduation and runs the Prefreshmen Summer Program for incoming CALS students. He has taken on other roles across campus as a crisis manager, event liaison, and an organizer for the Student Leadership Educators Network (SLEN).  He is a graduate of Canisius College '07 and St. Bonaventure University '08. Originally from Syracuse, NY, Brandon especially loves to travel abroad and experience new places.  

  • FAQs

    Who can join?

    This group is intended to support Cornell employees who identify as Men of Color and/or support the mission of the Men of Color Colleague Network Group.

    Are there membership dues?

    Membership is free and supported by Cornell University.

    Do I have to go to meetings, or any other membership requirements?

    We hope you'll join us at our in-person meetings and events, but there are no attendance or membership requirements.

    Can I only join one CNG at a time?

    You're welcome to join multiple CNGs.

  • Resources

    Business Leaders of Colors: 


    • Business Leaders of Colors is a network of business owners, entrepreneurs, consultants, and social justice leaders focused on helping people of color in Tompkins County succeed in business. On their website you can find business resources as well as a compiled list of local Black-owned businesses.

    Ithaca Neighborhood Housing Services: 


    • Ithaca Neighborhood Housing Services (INHS) is dedicated to expanding housing opportunities for low and moderate-income residents of Tompkins County and the surrounding region. It seeks to foster communities that embrace diversity, equity, and sustainability in ways that produce lasting outcomes. They offer homebuyers classes, inspection classes, and resources on buying homes in Tompkins County.

    Diverse Living in Ithaca Guide: 

    Greater Ithaca Activities Center: 

    Southside Community Center: 

    • Since its incorporation in 1934, the Southside Community Center, Inc., continues to affirm, empower, and foster the development of self-pride among the African-American citizens of greater Ithaca. Through forums and activities in education, recreation, political and social awareness, the Southside Community Center is a community resource center. We serve as a vehicle to develop an appreciation for the contributions and presence of those peoples of African descent in the greater Ithaca community and in the larger world community.

    Multicultural Resource Center:

    Learning Web: 

    Catholic Charities: