Home Arts & Entertainment Diversity Lecture Series to host former NAACP president Feb. 17

Diversity Lecture Series to host former NAACP president Feb. 17

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By Marco Zamudio – Collegiate Staff

Benjamin Todd Jealous, former NAACP president and contemporary civil rights leader, will be  speaking at 7 p.m. Feb. 17 at Fountain Street Church as part of the Diversity Lecture Series. All lectures in the series are free and open to the public.

The primary focus of Jealous’ work is on civil and human rights, with a particular emphasis on racial inequality in America. He is passionate about reforming the American criminal justice systems. Accordingly, his talk will touch on the pressing issue of mass incarceration and how it relates to African American inequality.

“[Benjamin’s] cultural insight into civil rights issues is a tremendous asset to our series,” said Chris Arnold, director of the Grand Rapids Community College Diversity Learning Center. “I’m sure he will provide some really compelling data, statistics, and hopefully some action items, or solutions.”

The Diversity Lecture Series program, now in its 21st year of operation, is organized by the GRCC Bob and Aleicia Woodrick Diversity Learning Center. The program aims to educate the community on social issues and topics centered around the theme of diversity. It accomplishes this by seeking out speakers capable of addressing a variety of social issues that are of topical interest at the local, national and global levels.

“Students often leave these lectures with a strong sense of enlightenment, even if they may not have previously been particularly interested in the topic,” Arnold said.