TACOMA, Wash. – Valerie Jarrett, a former senior advisor to President Barack Obama, will speak at the 2018 Race & Pedagogy National Conference at the University of Puget Sound. Her talk will be on Friday, Sept. 28 at 4:30 p.m. in the fieldhouse. Tickets are available at tickets.pugetsound.edu.

Renowned for her work to advance the causes of women and historically marginalized groups, Jarrett will join a stellar group of conference presenters and participants who will engage the public in an urgent discussion of race and education and how these issues impact efforts for social justice.

The conference theme, “Radically Re-Imagining the Project of Justice: Narratives of Rupture, Resilience, and Liberation,” will be explored through lectures, discussions, panels, presentations, performances, visual arts, and interactive sessions. The conference is organized by the University of Puget Sound’s Race & Pedagogy Institute, a partnership between the national liberal arts college and the South Sound community. For 14 years, the Race & Pedagogy Institute has encouraged students and teachers to think critically about race and compelled them to seek to eliminate racism.

Every four years, the Tacoma-based conference draws more than 2,000 participants from the community, across the country, and abroad. In addition to an impressive lineup of speakers, this year’s conference will feature several special features: it is being hosted in collaboration with Puget Sound’s Homecoming and Family Weekend; it will include a youth summit for high school students; and on Friday, Sept. 28, faculty members are encouraged to have the conference serve as their classroom so that students can fully participate in conference activities and events.

Valerie Jarrett, currently a senior distinguished fellow at The University of Chicago Law School, was the longest-serving senior advisor on the Obama administration and is a trusted confidante of the Obama family. In her White House roles, Jarrett championed equality and opportunity for all Americans. While at the White House, she oversaw the Offices of Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs, and she chaired the White House Council on Women and Girls.

Jarrett earned her B.A. from Stanford University and her J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School. Her many roles have included commissioner of the Chicago Department of Planning and Development, chair of the Chicago Transit Board, and the CEO of the Habitat Company. She has also served in numerous other capacities, including the Chicago Stock Exchange, chair of the University of Chicago Medical Center, and board member of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

The moderated conversation with Valerie Jarrett is sponsored by the Susan Resneck Pierce Lectures in Public Affairs and the Arts, University of Puget Sound’s premier lecture series. The series brings intellectuals, public figures, writers, and artists to the university to present challenging ideas that stimulate further exploration and discussion on campus.

Sponsors of the 2018 Race & Pedagogy National Conference include the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, an anonymous foundation donor, the city of Tacoma, the Greater Tacoma Community Foundation, the Black Education Strategy Roundtable, and MultiCare Health System.

Registration for the 2018 Race & Pedagogy National Conference is open to the public. Participants can register at pugetsound.edu/RPI. Details on speakers and the program can be found on the website, which will be updated regularly.

Press photos of Valerie Jarrett can be downloaded from pugetsound.edu/pressphotos.

Tweet this: Former Obama advisor @ValerieJarrett to speak @PSRaceandPedagogy 2018 conference at @univpugetsound Sept. 27–29. Registration open soon. #Race #civilrights #Tacoma #RPNC2018

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