Park Bench Chat

Park Bench Chat: Preserving Black history for a more equitable future

Thank you for joining us for a Park Bench Chat about the growing movement to preserve and lift up a more accurate, equitable public memory of America. We were in conversation with Keith Weaver, Trust for Public Land board member and executive vice president of Global Policy and External Affairs for Sony Pictures Entertainment; and Brent Leggs, executive director of the African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund and author of Preserving African American Historic Places. They shared insights about places that tell the story of Black life in America, highlighting centuries of activism, achievement, creativity, and community. And we discussed how equity in historic preservation revitalizes communities, enriches our culture, and helps shape a more just and prosperous future for all.

When: Tuesday, February 23, 1:00 p.m. PST/4:00 p.m. EST

Keith Weaver

Keith Weaver is a national board member and chair of the Black History and Culture Sites Advisory Council at The Trust for Public Land. As executive vice president for Global Policy and External Affairs with Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE), Keith oversees all community affairs, as well as government and public policy activities globally. He develops the legislative and regulatory agenda that supports the business strategies and initiatives across all divisions, including other U.S. operations, Sony Music, Sony Electronics, and Sony Computer Entertainment. Prior to joining SPE, Keith was the staff director of the California State Senate Redistricting Office. He also served as regional manager of Community and Government Relations for Kaiser Permanente and as a staff member for former State Senator Herschel Rosenthal. Previously, Keith chaired the California State Film Commission and served as vice chair of the board of Neighborhood Commissioners for the City of Los Angeles. 


Brent Leggs

Brent Leggs is the executive director of the African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund. Envisioned as a social movement for justice, equity, and reconciliation, the Action Fund is promoting the role of cultural preservation in telling the nation’s full history, while also empowering activists, entrepreneurs, artists, and civic leaders to advocate on behalf of African American historic places. A Harvard University Loeb Fellow and author of Preserving African American Historic Places, which is considered the “seminal publication on preserving African American historic sites” by the Smithsonian Institution, Brent is a national leader in the U.S. preservation movement and the 2018 recipient of the Robert G. Stanton National Preservation Award. His passion for elevating the significance of Black culture in American history is visible through his work, which elevates the remarkable stories and places that evoke centuries of black activism, achievement, and community.