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Q&A with Dereca Blackmon

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Read below to find out about Spiritual Allyship With Dereca Blackmon.

With Speaker, Trainer & Facilitator, and
National Expert on Topics of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Dereca Blackmon

New 5-Week Live Video Training Starts
Thursday, August 27, 2020


Receive potent wisdom and participate in powerful processes to explore privilege, racial biases, and inclusive mindset… and discover your path and power to BE the change — dissolving racial injustice and building systems of equity.


How many times have you heard about another devastating and deplorable act of violence against an innocent and unarmed Person of Color, and wanted to stand up and do something to finally end centuries of killings and oppression...

... but you didn’t know where to begin?

As the world around us finally wakes up to answer the call to dismantle racism, many of us are trying to figure out what our own role is... and what we can do to truly make a difference.

Many of us have often remained silent in conversations about race, because we’ve been afraid of making mistakes — afraid of saying the wrong thing or offending people.

But there’s a long history of powerful allies in our lifetimes who’ve done groundbreaking work in the movement for racial equity...

... and you, too, have the power to create world-changing transformation — as a spiritual ally.

What does it really mean to be an ally? And what’s required of us as we walk our path to the front lines of the struggle against racism?

Being a good ally isn’t about a set of steps you take or skills you master. It’s about having an inclusive mindset, which you continuously work to put into practice.

So, what does that look like?

Join a profound 5-week course with Dereca Blackmon — a remarkably engaging speaker, facilitator, and national expert on topics of diversity, equity, and inclusion... and an active spiritual leader — as she explores these questions, and lays the groundwork for you to rise up as a true ally.

She’ll dive deep into the differences and significance of key terms — including diversity, inclusion, belonging, equity, bias, prejudice, discrimination, and oppression...

... and, without blame or shame, guide you through a series of potent experiences that will help you build a foundation of awareness around your own orientation to core concepts — such as inclusive mindset, privilege, bias, cultural humility, and microaggressions — and how they show up in your life.

The Transformational Power of an Inclusive Mindset

In her dynamic new live video program, Dereca will dig deep into each of the key principles we need to be inclusive.

Being brave requires that we step out of our comfort zone, and into uncomfortable spaces where we’re challenged to learn and grow.

Being humble means that, even if we may have the heart of an ally, we recognize that we’re not experts. We’re all going to make mistakes, and it’s important to learn how to receive feedback without self-criticism or defensiveness.

To be dedicated, we have to be patient with ourselves and the world. It’s a long game that we can’t win unless we commit to try and try again, never letting up... sowing seeds that will flourish over time.

And, you don’t have to be at the center of the arena to be an important partner in the uprising for racial equity.

In this evolutionary and experiential training, Dereca will share impactful stories of brave and dedicated allies in both past and present situations.

She’ll compassionately (and passionately) help you examine your unintended contribution to the painful and continuing history of racial injustice and inequity.

And as these truths are revealed, you’ll develop an understanding and a way to work with your own privilege.

In our current social climate, people say “privilege” like it’s a dirty word. However, it isn’t in and of itself a bad thing. It’s when people misuse their privilege to gain dominance that it becomes a stance of violence.

Allies can use privilege to benefit those who don’t have it... strengthening and uplifting the voices of the unheard.

And Dereca can show us how.


As this deeply meaningful and groundbreaking course unfolds, you’ll:

  • Understand the principles of an inclusive mindset... and how to implement them in practical ways
  • Find your bravery to speak out against injustice and take action, despite any fear you may have of making mistakes
  • Identify the differences and significance of key terms — including diversity, inclusion, belonging, equity, bias, prejudice, discrimination, and oppression
  • Grasp what privilege really is in its many forms... and be guided in various exercises to identify your own
  • Learn to apply the principles of cultural humility in your own life
  • Discover ways to recognize and address bias
  • Identify microaggressions... and explore how they show up in your life
  • Look at various forms of power and consciousness
  • Hear impactful stories of brave and dedicated white allies in both past and present situations
  • Connect your spirituality to your personal “Why” as an ally
  • Explore the importance of centering marginalized voices
  • Grasp the concept of intent vs. impact
  • Create a vision for justice
  • Shape your role as a dedicated spiritual ally in advocating for change

We’re grateful and honored to have such a dynamic, powerful, truly captivating leader to guide the way as we stand on the precipice of radical change.

Whether you want to take a more active part in dismantling the systems that perpetuate racial oppression... learn how to speak more emphatically about racial issues... or simply become better educated about the systemic nature of racism and what that really means...

... Dereca will provide the tools you need to see your blind spots and understand how you may unconsciously play a part in the perpetuation of systemic racism — so you can move toward greater self-awareness and allyship.

What You’ll Discover in These 5 Weeks

In this 5-week transformational intensive, Dereca will guide you through techniques and experiential processes to develop the skills and competencies you’ll need to be a brave, humble, and dedicated ally.

The Power of Live Streaming Video


You’ll connect with Dereca and experience her teachings through live streaming video. This connection is easy to use and will enhance the impact of Dereca’s wisdom. Or you can easily connect just via audio if you choose — through your phone, tablet, laptop, or desktop.

(Can’t make it live? No worries! After each class, the video and audio recordings will be available for you to download or stream in high-quality format at your convenience.)

Weekly Sessions Thursdays at 5:00pm Pacific.

This course will feature LIVE teachings, interactive training sessions, and experiential practices with Dereca. Each session will build harmoniously upon the previous ones, so you’ll develop a complete holistic understanding of the practices, tools, and principles you’ll need to BE the change as a true ally.

Module 1: The Foundations of Spiritual Allyship (August 27)


You’ll begin this course with a look at the history of spiritual allyship, through stories of brave and dedicated white allies. Allyship is ineffective without an inclusive mindset. With that understanding at the forefront, Dereca will guide you through the foundations of an inclusive mindset.

She’ll cover the differences between diversity, inclusion, belonging, and equity... and create a shared language around bravery and what it means to center marginalized voices.

This entire first session will be rooted in examples of real-world stories and examples of what spiritual allyship looks like in practice — to provide you with the grounding you need to start implementing spiritual allyship in your own life.

In this module, you’ll discover:

  • A reflective practice on the history of spiritual allyship... and the foundational tools you’ll need to become a spiritual ally
  • How to identify key moments of spiritual allyship in past and present-day situations
  • The difference and significance of diversity, inclusion, belonging, and equity
  • The meaning and importance of centering marginalized voices
  • The foundations of an inclusive mindset

Module 2: Be Brave — Speak Out When You See Bias (September 3)


In this second class, you’ll take a step into your brave space through the exploration of what it means to cultivate a practice of bravery as a spiritual ally.

As an ally, you will make mistakes. Everyone does. Dereca will offer insights into how to decrease your fear of mistakes, how to ground when you’re uncomfortable, and how to be and stay encouraged to speak out — which means, in part, naming bias when you see it.

You’ll discover how to look for and address bias — even when you’re uncomfortable. And, you’ll learn the spiritual ally’s role in advocating for change. As Gandhi said, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

In this module, you’ll:

  • Learn to recognize and address bias
  • Become ready to move past discomfort and take action
  • Cultivate a practice of bravery
  • Start to shape your role as a spiritual ally in advocating for change
  • Participate in a contemplative practice focused on cultivating bravery when you’re uncomfortable in practical situations — such as naming and addressing bias

Module 3: Be Humble — Adopt Cultural Humility & Make Unqualified Apologies (September 10)


One of the key qualities of a spiritual ally is humility, a quality that needs to be cultivated and practiced. In this session, you’ll dive into the framework of cultural humility — a phrase coined by Dr. Melanie Tervalon and Dr. Jann Murray-Garcia — and reflect on its application in your own life. Dereca will guide you through how to respond with cultural humility when someone accuses you of “being racist” or impacting them negatively.

A large part of humility is the capacity to separate intent from impact. To that end, Dereca will take you through an exercise with specific instances of microaggressions — and focus on the art of the unqualified apology. You’ll look into the many ways microaggressions show up as you go through your days.

Being a spiritual ally is a process of lifelong learning, and you’ll dive into the many forms it takes in you.

In this class, you’ll learn how to:

  • Apply the principles of cultural humility in your own life
  • Understand how to separate intent from impact
  • Be guided in an experiential practice to help you identify microaggressions when you see them, so you can choose a productive response
  • Respond productively if you feel defensive about accusations of privilege or racism

Module 4: Be Dedicated — Commit to the Struggle for Justice (September 17)


Arguably the hardest and most defining quality of an ally is their willingness to be dedicated in the struggle for justice. In this session, you’ll learn specific inclusive mindset practices that require dedication. In preparation for that conversation, you’ll first turn inward and explore the dreaded P-word — Privilege — and look at the key characteristics of power and consciousness.

We often use words that hold different meanings based on the audience and context. Dereca will define bias, prejudice, discrimination, and oppression... and take you on a deep dive into the way they impact our lived experiences.

In this module, you’ll:

  • Define privilege in its many forms
  • Understand the various forms of power and consciousness
  • Reflect on what it means to be dedicated to the struggle for justice
  • Identify the differences between bias, prejudice, discrimination, and oppression
  • Explore your place on the continuum of allyship
  • Be guided through a personal analysis of the role of privilege, power, and consciousness in your own life and the world around you

Module 5: Where Do We Go From Here? (September 24)


You’ve had a lifetime of learning and you have the rest of your lifetime to go. To close this powerful course, you’ll discuss practical ways to continue your practice of cultural humility... to bravely advocate for change... and to never stop striving to be a better ally.

You’ll inquire into your ties to spirituality as you develop your personal “Why,” and take part in a visioning-for-justice exercise that will allow you to dream proactively rather than reactively.

In this final session, you’ll learn how to:

  • Implement the principles of an inclusive mindset in a practical way
  • Connect your spirituality to your personal “Why” as an ally
  • Create a vision for justice through a deep meditative process — and identify where to apply an inclusive mindset within that vision

The Spiritual Allyship Bonus Collection

In addition to Dereca’s transformative 5-week virtual course, you’ll receive these powerful training sessions with leading visionaries and teachers. These bonus sessions complement the course and promise to take your understanding and practice to an even deeper level.


The Song of Prayer
Video Libation/Prayer and Dialogue Dereca Blackmon and Jenn Johns

Experience a libation — a prayer honoring our ancestors — led by Dereca and Jenn. You’ll also explore music and art from Jenn’s “Good Medicine” project, featuring songs she’s produced. With libation and music as inspiration, Dereca and Jenn discuss the intersection of prayer and song... and their roles in the lives of spiritual activists.

Jenn Johns is a vocalist, songwriter, producer, activist, and entrepreneur who creates sounds and experiences that are sure to stir your soul, inspire your mind, and move your body. Jenn has taken her brand of Afro-Diasporic World Music all over the globe, rocking stages from Denver to Dusseldorf, Los Angeles to London, Kuala Lumpur to Kampala. She has shared lineups with Lauryn Hill, The Black Eyed Peas, Mos Def, Capelton, Ziggy Marley, Les Nubian, De La Soul, Common, and many more.


The Soundtrack for Spiritual Revolution
Video Dialogue With Dereca Blackmon and Reverend Osagyefo Sekou

From fine arts museums to foot-stomping juke joints, artists have long played a key role in the movement for social justice. And critically acclaimed musician and activist Rev. Sekou believes that artists will continue to play a crucial role in healing the acrimony that beset much of our national dialogue. His own music builds upon movement music by the SNCC Freedom Singers, The Staple Singers, and the blues tradition. In this dialogue, he’ll reveal, together with Dereca, the role of music in a revolutionary form of spiritual allyship.

A noted activist, theologian, author, documentary filmmaker, and musician, Reverend Osagyefo Sekou was raised in the rural Arkansas Delta. His music is a unique combination of Arkansas Delta blues, Memphis soul, 1970s funk, and gospel. In 2017, he released “In Times Like These” and produced the Grammy-nominated North Mississippi Allstars. His single “We Comin’” was named the new anthem for the modern civil rights movement by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He was selected by Ebony magazine’s Power 100 and NAACP’s HistoryMakers, and he was a delegate to the World People's Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth.


Meditation Practices for Dismantling Racism
Video Dialogue and Meditation Practice With Dereca Blackmon and Omi Ravi Spicereddy

In conversation with Dereca, lifelong meditation expert Ravi Spicereddy will take you through a meditation and the meaning behind it, leaving you with practical ways to incorporate anti-racism in your spiritual practices.

Ravi Spicereddy is a mindfulness teacher whose executive coaching program uses mindfulness meditation training to foster conscious leadership. Ravi is also co-founder of Oneness Ventures, an early-stage social impact venture capital firm that invests in solutions that promote peace using breakthrough developments in transformative technologies, psychedelic medicines, and awareness practices.


Human First Leadership
Video Dialogue With Dereca Blackmon and Nick Mehta

As one of the top 50 CEOs named by The Software Report, Nick Mehta has an unparalleled background in building an authentic inclusive culture and leading from a place of allyship. Together, Nick and Dereca will discuss what human first leadership looks like in practice, and they’ll dive into some of the challenges and successes they’ve faced in implementing this approach. This conversation will give you a sense of how to practice spiritual allyship… not just at home or in your personal life, but in the workplace.

Nick Mehta is the CEO of Gainsight, the leading Customer Success company. Nick has led the company through multiple funding rounds, raising a total of $156 million... and he grew the company from a handful of employees to more than 630 people working in seven offices around the world. He was named one of the Top 50 SaaS CEOs by SaaS report, and is an EY’s Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist. Nick holds one of the highest Glassdoor approval ratings for CEOs. He’s also the coauthor of Customer Success: How Innovative Companies Are Reducing Churn and Growing Recurring Revenue.


Models for Allyship in Spiritual Communities
Video Panel Discussion With Rev. Kevin Ross of Unity of Sacramento, Rev. Karen Fry of CSL Dallas (Center for Spiritual Living), and Rev. Dereca Blackmon

These three reverends are models of radical inclusion — each seeking to co-create a world that works for all. They’ll discuss their best models for allyship in spiritual communities — across many lines of difference... and they’ll dive into questions of consciousness, vulnerability, and transformational allyship.

Rev. Kevin Kitrell Ross is on a mission to inspire and empower everyday people to live extraordinary dreams. Whether it’s with his work as a celebrated life coach, radio show host, leadership consultant, author, or in his role as the Senior Minister and Chief Executive Officer of Unity of Sacramento, "Rev. Kev" (as he’s affectionately called) believes all people deserve to live lives of purpose, passion, peace, and prosperity. His work has taken him around the globe, and he’s shared the stage with His Holiness the Dalai Lama, President Nelson Mandela, Ella Gandhi, U.S. Congressman Ami Bera, and Dr. Marian Wright Edelman of the Children’s Defense Fund.

Rev. Karen Fry — known for her enthusiasm, inspirational speaking, and abundance consciousness — has a genuine love for all of life and meets people exactly where they are. She leads with her heart and is willing to be vulnerable and real. She’ll invite you into your own magnificence and power… to go beyond where you think you can, and move from limitation to limitlessness. Committed to teaching Science of Mind, Rev. Karen often incorporates experiential exercises — such as fire walking and board breaking — to evoke breakthroughs. She’s a Certified Firewalking Instructor, always on fire with her faith in the power of prayer.


What People Are Saying About Dereca Blackmon...

“... a few said Dereca should run for President!”

Dereca supported the successful launch of our Allies Academy as part of our larger Diversity and Inclusion initiatives at LinkedIn. To support our launch, she delivered an interactive, highly engaging, and transformational education event that was broadcast to LinkedIn employees across the U.S. The feedback was really strong — a few said Dereca should run for president! It’s clear that Dereca invested a great deal of thoughtful work and preparation into customizing the experience. Her coaching and guidance along the way was also top notch. I highly recommend Dereca if you are looking to make an impact in the space of diversity and inclusion with a meaningful experience for your organization.
— Tyrona Heath, Lead for Agency and Partner Education at LinkedIn and President of LinkedIn’s Black Inclusion Group (BIG)

“[Dereca]... creates safe spaces for courageous conversations, and never holds back...”

Dereca Blackmon is one of the most real, authentic, and powerful teachers I know! She knows how to inspire, inquire, and invite you into spaces, places, and growth within yourself that are priceless and transformative. She is a powerful presence of boundless love, creates safe spaces for courageous conversations, and never holds back for the sake of your expansion.
— Rev. Karen Fry, minister, speaker, and teacher

“Dereca is one of the most insightful, charismatic, and intelligent people... ”

Dereca is one of the most insightful, charismatic, and intelligent people amongst Stanford’s far-reaching student affairs staff. Speaking with her has the comforting effect of speaking with your mom, but the sharp, cutting insight of all things related to race, class, and equity...
— Ibrahim Bharmal, human rights advocate, migration specialist, and writer

“... I will recommend her to every institution I work at in the future...”

My very first week at Stanford, I heard Dereca speak and I knew that she was someone I wanted to have as an instructor and mentor. She is someone who meets people where they are and does not shame them into caring about diversity issues, but rather guides them to the reasons why diversity is important to their lives and their own success. She is deeply passionate about equity and justice, and practices creating that in the world through her connections with others. Without a doubt, I will recommend her to every institution I work at in the future for their diversity initiatives, and I hope to channel her in my life moving forward.
— Gabriela Nagle Alverio, Consultant at Inclusion Design Group


Join the Global Community


Spiritual Allyship offers some of the most advanced online teachings available, within a thriving, global community of learning and practice.

Join fellow students and practitioners to support and inspire each other as you integrate the teachings and practices Dereca Blackmon will share in this powerful training.

You’ll be part of an international community that’s on the leading edge of a global movement of people manifesting a world grounded in principles of cooperation, harmony, and reverence for all of life.


Here’s What You’ll Receive

Five 90-Minute Class Sessions With Dereca Blackmon

Experience a unique opportunity to be mentored by and learn from speaker, trainer, and expert on topics of diversity, equity, and inclusion Dereca Blackmon — from the comfort of your own home. Each class session includes a live streaming video option and guides you to discover specific skills and abilities to discover your path and power to dissolve racial injustice and build systems of equity. Course sessions are on Thursdays at 5:00pm Pacific.

Five Video Recordings of Class Sessions

After each class, the video will be available for you to download or stream in high-quality format. You’ll never have to worry about missing a session, and you can watch anytime and anywhere — on any connected device and at your convenience.

Five Audio Recordings of Class Sessions

After each class, the audio will be available for you to download in high-quality MP3 format. You’ll never have to worry about missing a session, and you can listen anytime and anywhere — on any connected device and at your convenience.

Five PDF Transcripts of Class Sessions

In addition to the high-quality videos and MP3 audios, you’ll also receive the entire class transcription in PDF format after each session is completed. You can then review, print, and highlight the most important insights and practices you were given.

Five 30-Minute Interactive Group Practice Sessions

With live class attendance, there will be a 30-minute optional interactive practice session directly following each class. You’ll be placed in an intimate group with several other participants on the conference call to interact, share, and do additional practices with, to help further integrate the weekly lessons. Practice sessions are available for live attendance only, not recorded for playback. If you’re unable to attend the calls live, the Facebook online community group allows you to connect with each other and find alternative times to interact.

Interactive Exercises and Questions for Each Lesson

Between class sessions, you’ll have the option of completing related exercises, practicing new tools, and answering questions to accelerate your learning and integrate each week’s lesson.

Online Community

Our exclusive Facebook online community is the perfect place to continue your discovery process after each class. Here, you can continue the discussion about your course materials and interact with your fellow students to take your exploration to an even deeper level.

The Spiritual Allyship Bonus Collection
  • The Song of Prayer
    Video Libation/Prayer and Dialogue With Dereca Blackmon and Jenn Johns
  • The Soundtrack for Spiritual Revolution
    Video Dialogue With Dereca Blackmon and Reverend Osagyefo Sekou
  • Human First Leadership
    Video Dialogue With Dereca Blackmon and Nick Mehta
  • Meditation Practices for Dismantling Racism
    Video Dialogue and Meditation Practice With Dereca Blackmon and Omi Ravi Spicereddy
  • Models for Allyship in Spiritual Communities
    Video Panel Discussion With Rev. Kevin Ross of Unity of Sacramento, Rev. Karen Fry of CSL Dallas (Center for Spiritual Living), and Rev. Dereca Blackmon

An Unprecedented Opportunity to Join the Spiritual Allyship Online Training


We feel honored that Dereca Blackmon has chosen to partner with The Shift Network to offer this exclusive LIVE online training. This is a unique opportunity to interact directly with a speaker, trainer, and expert on topics of diversity, equity, and inclusion whose powerful insights and groundbreaking work are helping us heal and awaken ourselves and our world.

If you’re serious about discovering your path and power to dissolve racial injustice and build systems of equity, then you owe it to yourself, your loved ones, and our world to take this one-of-a-kind training.

If you’re ready to take the next step in evolving yourself, click the register button below to reserve your space now.


About Dereca Blackmon

Dereca Blackmon, co-founder and CEO of Inclusion Design Group, is a passionate speaker, facilitator, and national expert on topics of diversity, equity, and inclusion. For over 25 years she has consulted with a wide variety of corporate, educational, nonprofit, and community-based groups to facilitate “uncommon conversations” on issues of race, gender, class, and social justice. Her experiential training models cut through “diversity fatigue” and allow participants to engage in deep, authentic, and meaningful dialogues.

She’s the former Assistant Vice Provost and Director of the Diversity and First-Generation Office at Stanford University, where she introduced groundbreaking work on authentic engagement, intergroup dialogue, and unconscious bias to over 30,000 students, staff, faculty, and alumni. She also taught several courses at Stanford, including Intergroup Communication with renowned cultural psychologist Hazel Markus, which has a waitlist of over 250 students.

Dereca co-led the effort to organize the Bay Area community response to the murder of Oscar Grant III by transit police. After mobilizing thousands of protestors and holding countless meetings and rallies, she began to question the strategy of organizing “against” rather than “for.” She entered ministerial school and has never looked back... becoming one of the leading speakers on spiritual activism in the U.S.

Her training, activism, and youth development work have been featured in two books: Black Youth Rising by Dr. Shawn Ginwright and Learning to Liberate by Dr. Vajra Watson, and her work is cited in countless forums, including The Wall Street Journal, CNN, and The New York Times.


Frequently Asked Questions


Q: What’s a virtual course?
A: It’s a great way to engage live and pre-recorded teachings and each other from the comfort of your home! All you need is a computer, mobile device, or telephone. If there’s more than one person in your household taking the course, you’ll each need your own connection. We use Zoom video conferencing to make it just like an in-person event, where you can ask questions and deepen your exploration of the course themes.

There’s no additional charge for connecting to Zoom with your computer or mobile device. Please note that dialing Zoom from your telephone is a toll call; your telephone service provider will charge you according to your existing long-distance calling plan. International access numbers are available.

“I’ve never seen a course so well put together ever...”

I had never participated before in an online course. The packaging, presentation, inclusion, and Facebook postings created a wonderful, safe cocoon within which to participate. I’ve never seen a course so well put together ever — not in all the years of taking college classes — and I had my doubts about doing an online course. The wealth of organization and ease of learning materials and support made this fun as well.
Claudia F., Medford, Massachusetts


Q: Can I get benefit from the course if I miss the live classes?
A: Absolutely! You can download the recordings and transcripts of all course sessions from our online media archive, so you never need to worry about missing live calls. You can also engage the full community and leaders on our private online community group.


Q: Can you tell me about the private online community group?
A: We’ll have a private online community group for all course participants on Facebook that will support you in making connections with others, sharing insights, engaging in discussions, and completing homework assignments that can supplement your transformational journey. You’ll have the ability to share your experiences, projects, and growth throughout the course.


Q: Are there scholarships available for this training?
A: Yes, we always make a certain percentage of spaces available for partial scholarships, giving preference to those in developing countries or doing important but underpaid work to which they can apply the training material immediately. If you’d like to apply for a scholarship, please review our guidelines, which include a link to our online application form.


Q: What’s your refund policy?
A: Your satisfaction with The Shift Network and this course is our highest priority! We offer a satisfaction guarantee so that you can sample the course risk-free. The deadline to receive a full refund is September 3, 2020. To request a refund, please click on this refund request form and submit your request. Qualifying refunds will be processed within five business days and an email confirming the refund will be sent. However, we’d love to have a chance to address and resolve your concerns first. If there’s something we can assist you with, please email us at and we’ll be happy to help! (No refund requests accepted after the above date or with scholarship awards.)


Q: How can I reach Customer Support?
A: Please visit our Customer Support Center, where you should be able to find the answer to your question or the solution to your problem. And if you can’t, you can submit an online request form and we’ll get right back to you.