Next Steps: Continuing the Conversation

Regional programs explore 50th commemoration of integration

As part of the university’s 50th anniversary of black students at Duke, a number of regional events are setting the stage for alumni to explore the past and future of Duke’s commitment to issues of race relations and diversity.

Participants at the first two events, held this past April in New York and Atlanta, included: James Braxton Peterson ’93, MSNBC contributor and director of Africana Studies at Lehigh University; Nana Asante ’12, former president of the Black Student Alliance; Shavar Jefferies ’96, an associate professor at Seton Hall Law School; Janet Hill, a member of Duke’s board of trustees, principal with Hill Family Advisors, and parent of NBA player Grant Hill ’94; Maurice Wallace Ph.D. ’95, associate professor of English and African & African American Studies at Duke; Lisa Borders ’79, president of Grady Health Foundation.

Additional events are scheduled for Boston (May 29), Los Angeles (June 28), and Washington (July 20); Dallas and Chicago will host events in late summer or early fall. The Duke Alumni Association website will update the calendar of events, including speaker and participant information, as it becomes available.

Event organizers are also encouraging all alumni to mark their calendars for the culminating 50th Commemoration events on campus this fall as part of Founders' Day weekend activities, October 3-6.

“We want to be sure everyone understands that this anniversary isn’t just about one particular group—it’s about all of us,” says D. Michael Bennett ’77, who leads an alumni advisory committee for the commemoration. “What happened fifty years ago changed Duke for everyone. And we want everyone to be part of recognizing the significance of those events.”

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