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Release date: Jan. 29, 2001
Contact: Elaine Justice, Assistant Director, 404-727-0643, or

Emory Hosts Multi-Campus Forum on Racial Issues

As part of its Year of Reconciliation, Emory University will host the first in a series of multi-campus forums called "Hearings for Healing: Testimonies on Racism and Reconciliation," from 7-9 p.m. Monday, Feb. 12. The event will be moderated by Johnnetta Cole, Presidential Distinguished Professor of Anthropology at Emory. Among the first "testifiers" will be civil rights pioneer C.T. Vivian and former Georgia legislator Dan E. Ponder.

Also participating will be a panel of student testifiers drawn from Emory, Agnes Scott College, Clark Atlanta University, Georgia State University and Georgia Institute of Technology. The evening will offer a truth-and-reconciliation process in addressing issues of racism, based on a testimony format, with student panelists following keynote testifiers Vivian and Ponder.

The forum will be held in Winship Ballroom of the Dobbs University Center, 605 Asbury Circle on the Emory campus. Admission is free. Parking is available in the Peavine visitors lot on Fraternity Row. For more information call 404-727-7596.

Called a leader in the vanguard of the civil rights movement, Vivian has been featured as an activist and analyst in the civil rights documentary, "Eyes on the Prize," and has been profiled in a PBS special, "The Health Ministry of Dr. C.T. Vivian." Ponder, a former Republican representative from what he calls "an ultraconservative rural district," spoke out last year moments after the Georgia House voted to shelve a proposal to stiffen the penalties for hate crimes. After his speech, which received two standing ovations, Republicans and Democrats passed the bill by a vote of 116-49.

The event is being organized by The New Millennium, a group of academic, corporate and community leaders convened to address issues of race that continue to divide communities, institutions and work environments. The group shares "the conviction that the new millennium provides an unprecedented opportunity to assess and improve the effectiveness of current anti-racism efforts and to implement new strategies towards ending racism in the next generation."

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