•  MBS Diversity Committee Members


    Mountain Brook Schools announced in early June 2020 the formation of a Diversity Committee tasked with examining the school system’s efforts to achieve the following strategic goal:


    "Develop structures to ensure that the school district honors diversity and that all who are associated with the school district are treated with respect"


    The announcement followed an Anti-Semitic incident involving MBS students in May and a wave of injustices experienced across the country by religious communities and communities of color. The committee is comprised of 17 individuals representing the school system’s various stakeholder groups, along with faith leaders and ambassadors from local diversity education organizations


    A list of committee members is below:

    • Jenny Argo: Teacher, Mountain Brook Junior High

      Stephen Bridgers: MBS Parent

      Christy Christian: Principal, Crestline Elementary

      Donald Clayton: Principal, Mountain Brook Junior High

      Al Cohn, M.D.: MBS Parent

      Danny Cohn: Chief Professional Executive Officer, Birmingham Jewish Federation

      Cameron Cole: MBS Parent

      Carla Dudley: Assistant Principal, Cherokee Bend Elementary

      Christi Elias: Teacher/Coach, Mountain Brook High School

      Hannah Halpern: Student, Mountain Brook High School

      Ann Mollengarden: Education Coordinator, Birmingham Holocaust Education Center

      Sandy Ritchey: Principal, Cherokee Bend Elementary

      Brock Rotter: Teacher, Mountain Brook High School

      Ben Wei, M.D.: MBS Parent

      Adam Williamson: Student, Mountain Brook High School

      Adam Wright: Rabbi, Temple Emanu-El

      Charles Woods: Outreach Coordinator, Birmingham Civil Rights Institute


      “We are grateful for the individuals who served on this committee,” MBS Superintendent Dr. Dicky Barlow said. “They possess unique strengths, provide valuable perspectives, and understand our community’s values. Moreover, they share a desire to help our school system foster acceptance and inclusion while preparing our students for life in a diverse world.”

      Christy Christian and Dr. Al Cohn served as facilitators for the committee, which met on June 11, July 7, and August 4. At each meeting, committee members referenced four guiding questions to lead discussions.

      What is MBS doing now that contributes to its picture of success?

      What is MBS doing now that needs to be redesigned?

      What does MBS need to stop doing?

      What does MBS need to start doing?


      The initial meeting in June allowed committee members to introduce themselves to one another, review existing diversity initiatives at each Mountain Brook school, and establish the committee’s goal.

      In July, committee members learned about the diversity education resources available to MBS. The meeting featured presentations from the Anti-Defamation League, Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, Birmingham Holocaust Education Center, Global Prep Club, and YWCA.

      After its July meeting, the committee divided into three subcommittees focused on the areas of programming; communication and community; and learning and training. The subcommittees met individually to formulate recommendations they presented to the full committee when it reconvened in early August.

      Committee facilitators are in the process of distilling those findings and will soon provide formal recommendations on behalf of the committee to MBS. The school system plans to begin consideration and implementation of those recommendations beginning in the 2020-2021 school year.