Two Lectures Address Themes of Racial Equality - and the Inequalities that Remain


Two free public lectures on Wednesday, Aug. 28 at SSU address issues of race, due process and the 50 year anniversary of the 1963 march on Washington.


DR. RAQUELL HOLMES: Fifty-Year Anniversary of the March on Washington

raquell.jpgAt 5 p.m., in the HUB in the Student Union, Dr. Raquell Holmes presents a conversation on Martin Luther King's "Fifty-Year Anniversary of the March on Washington." Her presentation hopes to answer questions about what has transpired since King stood on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial and as the shepherd to his flock told the congregated masses about his "dream" of racial equality.

Recently, King's contemporaries are revisiting his declarations as they assembled to celebrate the 1963 March on Washington's legacy as well as to continue the discussion of racial equality in the United States. At SSU, Holmes will discuss what has been gained and lost in the field of equality, and what is at stake? The presentation also aims to recognize the Civil Rights Movement "as something still in creation."

Holmes is the daughter of cultural historian, Dr. LeVell Holmes, an SSU professor who died in 2012 after long service to the campus.

She is the founder of improvscience, an organization created by a computing scientist to help fellow computing and science professionals work better together. Trained formally as a cell biologist, Holmes uses improvisational theater and performance to build collaborative learning environments to business, schools and researchers throughout the country. Her interdisciplinary research and educational efforts in the computational sciences make use of modeling, simulation and visualization tools.


She has long been a political activist, founding both the Patriot Party as well as the Reform Party. She is currently an independent voter and a facilitator of environments in which people of diverse backgrounds can come together to create new ways of living both socially and politically. Holmes was born in San Francisco and raised in Sonoma County. She resides in Cotati and Boston.


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JOHN BURRIS: Oscar Grant and Trayvon Martin: Intersection of Race and Due Process


Oscar Grant's family attorney, John Burris, discusses "Oscar Grant and Trayvon Martin: Intersection of Race and Due Process" at noon in the Evert B. Person Theatre. Burris is an accomplished civil rights lawyer who most recently represented the family of Oscar Grant who was fatally shot by a BART police officer in 2009.


He has also served as counsel for the class action lawsuit involving the Oakland Police Department Riders, a group of OPD officers accused of planting evidence and false arrests amongst other charges.


Burris says his work against the Oakland Police Department has led to continuing reforms within the department. He has also provided legal support for Barry Bonds, Tupac Shakur, as well as numerous public officials like former San Francisco Chief of Police Earl Sanders.


Known as a civil rights and legal analyst for MSNBC, Court TV, and CNN, as well as for other local television and radio stations, he has recently published the book "Blue vs. Black: Let's End the Conflict between Police and Minorities."


This presentation is part of the new Africana Lecture Series sponsored by SSU's American Multicultural Studies Department. A $5 daily parking fee is required to park on campus.


For further information, contact Christina Baker, Assistant Professor of American Multicultural Studies, christina.baker@sonoma.edu.

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