BCH Black Caucus

BCH Black Caucus
Welcome Remarks


 Stephanie Brown, Co-Chair

Abdur Shemsu, Co-Chair 


Saun-Toy Latifa Trotter, Black Caucus Advisor


The mission of the BCH Black Caucus is to help foster a hospital climate and culture of unity, equity, and inclusion. The group will serve as a resource for advancing the social and cultural growth among African American care providers and staff through outreach, mentoring, networking, community service, and enrichment activities. In collaboration with our counterparts in San Francisco, hospital leadership, the BCH DEI/AR Council and other affinity groups, our goals include:

  • To increase diversity among our care providers and staff in collaboration with BCH DEI/AR
  • To create a safe space to speak freely about institutional inequities at BCH
  • To develop and cultivate career growth opportunities for people of color


Black History Month 2024

This year we celebrate Black History Month with a theme of African Americans and the Arts.

African American art is infused with African, Caribbean, and the Black American lived experiences. In the fields of visual and performing arts, literature, fashion, folklore, language, film, music, architecture, culinary and other forms of cultural expression, the African American influence has been paramount. African American artists have used art to preserve history and community memory as well as for empowerment. Artistic and cultural movements such as the New Negro, Black Arts, Black Renaissance, hip-hop, and Afrofuturism, have been led by people of African descent and set the standard for popular trends around the world. In 2024, we examine the varied history and life of African American arts and artisans.

Black Joy Parade

Sunday, February 25, 2024 | 11:30 am - 2:30 pm  

14th St & Franklin St Oakland, CA 94612

UCSF Benioff Children's Hospitals is excited to announce its participation in the 7th annual Oakland Black Joy Parade. We invite everyone to join us and proudly represent BCH during the parade portion of the event. The Black Joy Parade exists to provide the Black community and allies a live experience that celebrates the community’s influence on cultures past, present and future. Join us on Sunday, February 25 (Parade begins at 12:30 p.m.) in Downtown Oakland. 


Red Bay Coffee Grand Opening

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

BCH Oakland Outpatient Center  

Join us as we celebrate the grand opening of Red Bay Coffee in BCH Oakland's Outpatient Center. As a locally owned black business and one of Oprah's Favorite Things of 2023, Red Bay Coffee is a testament to excellence. With this new hospital vendor, customers will also be able to order food and beverages online and on their phone with the InstaEats app. (No more waiting in line!). Stop by to savor a delightful coffee or indulge in a tasty bite while enjoying live entertainment as part of the opening festivities.

Fireside Chat with BLOOM: Black Love Opporunity and Outcome Improvement in Medicine

Wednesday, February 14, 2024 | 12 pm - 1 pm 

Join us for a Fireside Chat with the founders of BLOOM: Black Love Opportunity and Outcome Improvement in Medicine, a new clinic that matches Black babies with Black healthcare providers to improve outcomes for both moms and kids.

BLOOM is a space where Black babies and families are seen by racially concordant providers who understand and share their lived experiences. These families have access to world-class health care; receive screening for traumatic experiences and mental health wellness; connect with services that address unmet needs; receive financial assistance to establish college savings accounts; and benefit from lactation support and post-natal nutrition, among other services.

This is a groundbreaking effort. There is nothing comparable to this initiative in the United States. With the launch of BLOOM, we are building a model for Black pediatric primary care that can be replicated across the country.


- Dayna Long, MD                                               - Kayla Karvonen, MD

- Javay, Ross, MD                                               - Justin Williams, MD

Moderated by Saun-Toy Trotter


The Black Caucus 32nd Annual Black Heritage Gala (Sold Out!)

Saturday, February 10, 2024 | 6 pm - 10 pm
Hyatt Regency (Embarcadero)

5 Embarcadero Center, San Francisco, CA 94102

Thank you to everyone who will be joining us for this year's Black Caucus gala at the Hyatt Regency in San Francisco. The sold-out event includes a no-host cocktail hour, community building, and dancing. We will be joined by hospital leadership from BCH and UCSF Health. 

No Host Cocktail Hour | Seated Dinner with Wine | Community Building | Dancing

Mickel London Presents Music Medicine

Wednesday, June 21, 2023 | Doors 7:30 pm, Show 8 pm

Location: Yoshi's Oakland | 510 Embarcadero West, Oakland, CA 94607

On behalf of the BCH Black Caucus and Mickel London Productions, we are thrilled to extend an exclusive invitation to Music & Medicine, an extraordinary event taking place on Wednesday, June 21st, at the iconic Yoshi's Oakland. This special evening aims to benefit and honor the 50th anniversary of the UCSF Comprehensive Sickle Cell Center.

Prepare to be mesmerized as we present an exceptional lineup of performers for this year's event. Joining us on stage will be none other than KTVU Channel 2's very own Joe Fonzi, accompanied by his sensational All-star band. In addition, we are privileged to welcome Grammy Award-Winning artist Samuelle, whose talent will undoubtedly captivate and inspire. And that's not all – the enchanting vocalist Yasmeena will grace us with her incredible presence and many more.


Why Sickle Cell?

Since its establishment in 1973, the UCSF Sickle Cell Center has emerged as the largest and most comprehensive program in the Western United States, catering to individuals (primarily African Americans) with sickle cell disease and their families. Throughout the past five decades, the center has been at the forefront of groundbreaking research, seeking improved treatments and potential cures. Furthermore, the center has actively worked alongside community organizations, including the Black Panther Party, in pursuit of health equity.

Juneteenth Celebration of Freedom

Thursday, June 15, 2023 | 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM

UCSF Oakland Outpatient Center, 744 52nd St., Oakland, CA 94609

This Juneteenth Celebration of Freedom promises to be an unforgettable event, where community members, healthcare professionals, and supporters come together to honor the significance of Juneteenth. Join us for a fun-filled event with raffle excitement, the prestigious Dr. Vivien T. Thomas scholarship presentation, black-owned business vendors, delectable food and drinks, and a wonderful performance by a live band. Let's commemorate freedom, diversity, and unity in a spirit of joy and togetherness.

Live Entertainment Music & Dance: 11:30AM - 1:00PM

Food & Prizes: 11:30AM - 12:30PM

Free Raffle: Free Chick-Fil-A For A Year

Back Owned Business Vendors 10AM-2PM

Presentation: Exploring Vicarious Racialized Trauma

Thursday, April 27 | 4 pm - 5 pm 

You are invited to attend our monthly BCH Black Caucus meeting where we will hear from Khary Dvorak-Ewell, Community Health Prog Manager, M Psych-General-ZSFG-CWCM and Michelle Porche, Adjunct Professor Psychiatry present on the topic of " Exploring Vicarious Racialized Trauma" and trauma-informed work around racial justice. We will have time for Q&A.


Black Women in Leadership Roundtable Discussion

Thursday, March 30th | 4-5pm

  • Sheila Antrum, Senior VP/Chief Operating Officer at UCSF Health
  • Tonia Suber, VP and Chief People Officer, BCH
  • Rechelle Porter, Manager Child Life & Creative Arts, BCH Oakland 
  • Brandie Hollinger Quao, Unit Director, Pediatric Intensive Care Unit
  • Dr. Dayna Long, Medical Director, Center for Child and Community Health

Moderated by:

Saun-Toy Trotter, MFT, Clinical Director, School-Based Behavioral Health and Health Education


Black History Month 2023 

This year we celebrate Black History Month with a theme of Black Advancement. This is a call to action for all of us to promote education, provide access and boldly demand inclusion for members of our Black community in all areas of the American experience. Everyone needs to be educated on the systemic oppression that remains as an obstacle to generational wealth, educational opportunities, and equitable healthcare. We must find ways to help navigate the labyrinth of hurdles that were designed to prevent Black people from gaining access to resources. It will also be necessary to refuse the legitimacy of any initiative that does not include the perspective and input of all members of our society. Together we can find ways to bring about the advancement of Black people in every aspect of life by incorporating intention and purpose.

Social Mixer with BCH Chicanx Latinx Campus Association 

Thursday, November 17, 2022 | 5 pm - 6 pm 

The BCH Black Caucus & BCH Chicanx Latinx Campus Association held a mixer on Thursday, November 17th 5:00-6:00 pm, in the Oakland hospital courtyard. The purpose of the mixer is to increase staff engagement and employee morale among our BIPOC staff and providers. Over the last three years, since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, we've had very few staff events that have allowed our employees to connect and collaborate across the hospital. This was evident in the staff survey, which showed a decrease in staff morale amount BIPOC employees. This event allowed our two largest affinity groups to connect and engage with one another/and hospital leadership in a collegial atmosphere.

BCH Juneteenth Freedom Day Celebration

Please join us as we gather to honor and celebrate this important day in history. Enjoy delicious food, refreshments, music and dancing! All are welcome!

Juneteenth is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States. From its Galveston, Texas origin in 1865, the observance of Juneteenth as the African American Emancipation Day has spread across the United States and beyond

Thursday, June 16, 2022 | 4:30pm-6:00pm
MLK Building Courtyard (CHORI)

BCH in Solidarity & Healing 

Thursday, June 2, 2022 | 12 pm – 12:30 pm

As we continue to process and grieve the loss of life that resulted from the recent horrific events in Uvalde, TX, and Buffalo, NY, BCH had set aside some much-needed time to come together collectively to gain comfort from one another and acknowledge the pain that we all are experiencing. The webinar included opening remarks from BCH leadership, testimonials from the BCH Black Caucus and the BCH Chicanx Latinx Campus Association, a reflection from Spiritual Care Services, and sharing of some opportunities for collective actions that our BCH community can take toward positive change.


Black History Month 2022

Black History Month celebrates the rich and diverse cultures, traditions, and history and acknowledges the important contributions of African Americans/Black People in the United States. The theme for 2022 focuses on the importance of Black Health and Wellness.

BCH Black Caucus is collaborating with the various UCSF Black groups in organizing events, resources, and information for the Black History Month.

BCH Black Caucus presents: A Conversation with Dr. Camara Jones

Thursday, February 24, 2022 | 4 pm - 5 pm 

Come join us at the monthly BCH Black Caucus meeting in a conversation with Dr. Camara Jones, UCSF Presidential Chair, in dismantling racism and creating an equity roadmap for UCSF. 

Black History Month 2021 - The Get Down

The Black Caucus is hosting The Get Down, a social mixer with trivia, prizes, and dancing. Come join the celebration of the rich history of African Americans at BCH, while dancing to a compilation of African American music through the decades, playing a trivia game highlighting the incredible roles of African Americans in history, and winning prizes!!! All are welcome. Cultural Attire is encouraged.

Thursday, February 18, 2021 | 5 pm - 6 pm 



See Us Portrait Project

In honor of Martin Luther King Jr. holiday 2021, we launched the “See Us” portrait project. Organized by the UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Black Caucus, the project features portraits of our Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) colleagues across our campus to celebrate the diversity that makes our community strong.

Our goal to create a sense of belonging for our patients and staff by enhancing diversity, inclusion, racial justice, and health equity. This is a continuation of the important work we started through our DEI Council in 2020. We encourage everyone to think about how we can leverage our resources to advance this important work.

The portrait series was launched on the OPC digital donor wall in the Oakland campus on January 14, 2021, followed by the installation of framed portraits throughout our Oakland campus.

The See Us Project Mission Bay was launched in 2022, featuring inspirational portraits of BCH San Francisco BIPOC staff and providers. The goal of this project is to uplift, encourage, and celebrate our underrepresented BIPOC colleagues who are dedicated members of our organization and are nominated by staff. We also want to create a piece that reflects the diversity of our incredible team, while inspiring our community and potential healthcare workers of the future.

                   See Us Portrait Project OAK                                See Us Portrait Project SF 
Click HERE to view the webinar held on Wednesday, February 24, 2021.



Founded in 1968, The Black Caucus serves as an instrument of change, community building, and professional support. As the oldest culturally-based affinity group in the UC System, the Black Caucus is built on a foundation of social justice advocacy. During the Civil Rights Movement Black workers at UCSF, known as the "basement people" because of their disparate working conditions, went on strike to advocate for change. The Janitors Strike at UCSF was the catalyst for institutional change that resulted in recruitment and retention efforts for historically underrepresented students, faculty, and staff. Current leaders of the Black Caucus strive to uphold the legacy of our founding members. 

The BCH (Benioff Children’s Hospital) Black Caucus is a combined Oakland/San Francisco chapter of the larger UCSF Black Caucus established in 1968 from the direct action of UCSF staff who advocated for change.  Our BCH Black Caucus was formed in 2020 by Stephanie Brown and Abdur Shemsu, for the same reason. 

Moments of Solidarity 

The BCH community came together to reflect on a country where Black lives mean so little that violent killing after violent killing has become a norm and where African Americans are disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. For African Americans this moment is only a convergence of all of the racial violence, police brutality, health disparities, wealth gap and lack of access to education that has been the very fabric of the U.S. for 400 years. 

BCH hosted 3 town halls on Colliding Pandemics: Loss, Grief & Race during COVID-19. At 3:30 pm on June 3, 2020, both BCH Oakland and Mission Bay campuses took a moment to reflect and express solidarity on the current events involving the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and countless other African Americans. 

VIDEOS - Black History at BCH 



The BCH Black Caucus meets on the 4th Thursday of the month from 4 pm - 5 pm. To join the black caucus, email [email protected] and [email protected]