Martin Luther King Jr. events at Fairfield University feature Patricia J. Williams


Image: Patricia J. WilliamsPatricia J. Williams, J.D., the James L. Dohr Professor of law at Columbia University School of Law and a widely published author, will be speaking on Thursday, Jan. 24 at 3:30 p.m., in the Regina A. quick Center for the Arts, as part of Fairfield University's four-day Martin Luther King Jr. celebration. Her talk on "Seeing a Color-blind Future" is open to the public with no admission charge. A reception and book signing follow her talk and tickets are available through the Box Office, 203-255-4010 or toll free at (877) ARTS-396.

The four-day event features a multicultural marketplace on Wednesday, a Martin Luther King Jr. Youth Leadership Workshop for middle school students on Friday and an alumni reception, closing ceremony, buffet and Unity Ball on Saturday. All events are open to the public. The activities are being coordinated by students Dan Caldera, coordinator of the campus organization Together Effectively Achieving Multiculturalism (T.E.A.M.), and Kristin Yochum, director, and Teresa Correa, assistant director, of multicultural programs for the Fairfield University Student Association.

Professor Williams' first book, published in 1991, "The Alchemy of Race and Rights: A Diary of a Law Professor," is autobiographical and sheds light on some of America's most complex problems. That well received book was followed by "The Rooster's Egg: On the Persistence of Prejudice" (1995) and "Seeing a Color-Blind Future: The Paradox of Race" (1997). She is also a columnist for "The Nation."

Professor Williams was named a MacArthur Fellow last year. The prestigious program awards unrestricted fellowships to "talented individuals who have shown extraordinary originality and dedication in their creative pursuits, and a marked capacity for self-direction.

A graduate of Wellesley College, she received her doctor of jurisprudence degree from Harvard University. She served as a deputy city attorney for the City of Los Angeles from 1976-78 and then was a staff attorney for the Western Center on Law and Poverty in Los Angeles. She has also taught at Golden Gate College, the City University of New York in Queens and the University of Wisconsin at Madison. She has been a visiting professor of women's studies at Harvard University, visiting professor of law at Stanford University, visiting scholar at Duke University and at Stanford's Institute for Research on Women and Gender and a fellow at the School of Criticism and Theory at Dartmouth College.

The four-day celebration of Dr. King's life begins on Wednesday, Jan. 23 with a Multicultural Marketplace in the Barone Campus Center from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Open to the public, the Marketplace will feature multicultural items from a variety of vendors as well as a selection of ethnic dishes.

Professor Williams is on campus on Thursday to meet with students and deliver her address. During the program, the Martin Luther King Jr. Vision Awards will be presented to individuals, to be announced at a later date, in recognition of their "tireless effort to instill and inspire the teachings and ideals of Dr. King in today's youth."

On Friday, Jan. 25, area middle school students are invited to participate in a Martin Luther King Jr. Youth Leadership Workshop, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Barone Campus Center.

Saturday, Jan. 26, welcomes AHANA alumni back to campus for a reception in Alumni House from 4:30 to 6 p.m. A public closing ceremony, multicultural buffet and Unity Ball take place in the Barone Campus Center Oak Room, beginning at 6 p.m.

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Media Contact: Nancy Habetz, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2647, nhabetz@fairfield.edu

Posted on December 14, 2001

Vol. 34, No. 127