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National College Book Tour

Sweet Potato or Pumpkin Pie

Conversations with My  White Friends about Race

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Sweet Potato or Pumpkin Pie: Conversations with My White Friends about Race, Dr. William T. Lewis, talks with his White friends about perhaps one of the hardest conversation topics in America, racism. William and his friends discuss the human toll of racism, and the promise of a better tomorrow. They discuss the hope for the future, by sharing a commitment to move through the ally continuum, from ally to accomplice to conspirator.

 If you are looking for a book that offers authentic and transparent conversations about race and racism and offers you hope in a blame and shame free manner, then you must order your copy today.

In this book


What Readers Are Saying. . .


Sweet Potato or Pumpkin Pie brilliantly illuminates Dr. Lewis’ deeply held equity principles through meaningful conversations and impactful history lessons.

Robert Egleston 


Through trusted conversations, Dr. Lewis uncovers the truth to reveal the always ugly, often stealthy reality of racism so we can examine and change.  MORE conversations are needed, and I hope this is the first of many books.

Claire Tuttle


Dr. William T. Lewis, Sr. has given us a rare gift in Sweet Potato or Pumpkin Pie. It’s a personal, insightful, empathetic look at race and allyship from both Black and White perspectives. A gifted storyteller, Dr. Lewis invites us on a walk down memory lane where he gently weaves together his experiences growing up and adulting Black with historical snapshots of structural racism's stronghold in America. His interviews with White friends and colleagues who open up about their own racial awakening make this the perfect springboard to your own brave conversations about race. 

Laura Zielke, Director of Online Learning & Innovation, Nonprofit Leadership Lab                                          

"When I first met Dr. Lewis, he asked me this question: 'What do you prefer, sweet potato or pumpkin pie?' From that question, I was led into a fascinating exploration of the perceptions we make based on race. Now, Dr. Lewis has expanded this question into a book that is part memoir, part history, part social commentary about race in modern America. This is an approachable book for individuals or groups who want to explore their identity and biases in a healthy and supportive way. Equal parts challenging and encouraging, Sweet Potato or Pumpkin Pie is a book I will strongly recommend to our community."

Jamie Rogers Southern, Executive Director, Bookmarks


About the Author

Dr. William T. Lewis

Dr. William T. Lewis, Sr., nationally recognized diversity, and inclusion thought leader, and entrepreneur is an advisor and consultant to university presidents, and small to mid-size business leaders.

 As a former Chief Diversity Officer, Lewis has led diversity and inclusion efforts at three highly acclaimed colleges and universities-- Indiana University, Bridgewater State University and Virginia Tech University. Lewis formerly served as the Special Consultant to the President for Belonging, Equity and Inclusion at Forsyth Technical Community College.

Lewis is founder of WillHouseGlobal, a firm that provides diversity, equity, and inclusion consulting to companies who aspire to attract top talent, retain loyal customers and to lead in their industries!

 Lewis proudly served in the United States Marine Corps Reserves (1990-1996).

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The Pie Test

At the official book release for Sweet Potato or Pumpkin Pie: Conversations With My White Friends About Race, we hosted our very first pie test. The goal of the pie test is to test our assumptions and spark conversation!

 How it Works:

  • Participants are provided with two samples of pie, one sweet potato and one pumpkin

  • Participants guess the flavor of each pie and share which was their favorite

  • Lastly, we share conversations that we have had recently related to race and share topics 

       we would like to have further discussion.​

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