The Destruction and Rebuilding of Black Wealth in Charlottesville

Monday, October 26, 2020

6:30 – 8:00PM

Registration for this event has closed. Please contact Caroline Emerson,, for more information.

A Community Table presented in partnership with the Tom Tom Foundation

Welcoming remarks from Ravi Respeto, United Way, and Ben Allen, The Equity Center at UVA 

Many of you have heard of Vinegar Hill: the thriving black neighborhood that Charlottesville demolished in 1965 as part of an “urban renewal project,” the more acceptable version of “seizure of black-owned property.” The bulldozing of Charlottesville’s largest black neighborhood was the most tangible example of the intentional disintegration of the flourishing black community in our town.

But it wasn’t the only one. And years later, we continue to contend with the legacies, and endeavor to answer the question of how to rebuild.

COVID-19 has been a spotlight for many of the ongoing systemic issues in our community. We’ve seen glaring disparities in housing, healthcare, and economic mobility. But, make no mistake, COVID-19 did not create income disparity in Charlottesville. Though Black Americans and other nonwhites have seen increased opportunities for professional advancement since the civil rights movement, and businesses are championing equity, the chasm between white and minority wealth remains, and is growing by the day.

Moderated by UVA’s Dr. Ebony Hilton, panelists Yolunda Harrell, New Hill Development Corporation; Sarad Davenport, TMI Consulting; Ester Manheimer, Mayor of Asheville, NC; and Julie Mayfield, City Councilor of Asheville, NC will frame our discussion, explain local history and action, and describe the path that Asheville, NC has embarked on.


Dr. Ebony Hilton

Associate Professor of Anesthesiology
Critical Care Anesthesia

Yolunda Harrell

CEO | New Hill Development Corporation

Sarad Davenport

Senior Executive for Loom Technology | TMI Consulting

Julie Mayfield

City Councilor | Asheville, NC

Although we cannot be together in person this year, our guests will still gather around a (virtual) table to share a meal, get to know new people, and learn about different experiences and perspectives. 

Breakout table conversations hosted by local community leaders.
Complimentary take-out dinners prepared by Pearl Island for you to enjoy at home during our Table
*must be picked up in advance; instructions will be provided to attendees

Questions? Email Caroline at

A Community Table is made possible through the generous support of Bankers Insurance;
Curry School of Education; the Brown and Toscano Families; and Pearl Island.


Welcome – Ravi Respeto, 2 minutes
Table breakouts – Table Hosts welcome guests; introductions, 5 minutes
Introduction of panel – Ben Allen, The Equity Center, UVA, 2 minutes
Panel discussion – Moderated by Dr. Ebony Hilton, 30 minutes
Send all to table breakouts – Ravi, 1 minute
Table breakouts – led by Table Hosts, 30 minutes
Tables report back, ask questions – Ravi moderates, 5 minutes
Ravi sends all back to tables for goodbyes – 5+ minutes (people leave from the tables when they are ready)


Torri Ayers
Liza Borches
Bellamy Brown
Heber Delgado
Megan Gadient
Claudette Grant
Rishi Jaitly

Kelli Martin
Valeria McFarren Piper
George Michie
Joyce Pastors
Leah Puryear
Carrie Stanton
Price Thomas
Juan Wade