The conversation will be between four female activists of color, each of whom have unique values and perspectives that they bring to their social justice work. Ruha Benjamin will moderate the discussion between Carmen Perez, Linda Sarsour, and Tamika Mallory. This conversation will demonstrate how the women incorporate their different approaches with regard to social advocacy into working together towards a common goal. Perez, Sarsour, and Mallory all served as Co-Chairs of the Women’s March on Washington in January 2017. Their personal histories and motivations for participating in and leading this event were very different, but they nonetheless collaborated to bring over 5 million women from across the globe together to march in support of gender equity and gender equality. Their conversation will shed light on how people with different backgrounds, values, and perspectives work together, as well as allyship in action.
Carmen Perez: Carmen Perez has been actively engaged in the community for over 20 years. As the Executive Director of Harry Belafonte’s The Gathering for Justice, Perez has travelled the world, promoting peace and providing commentary on civil and human rights issues. Perez has demonstrated her commitment to advocating for the end of mass incarceration, as well as for gender equity and violence prevention. Most recently, Perez served as a Co-Chair of the Women’s March on Washington, which drew over 5 million people marching in opposition to gender inequity and inequality.
Linda Sarsour: Linda Sarsour is a Palestinian-American activist who has devoted herself to defending the civil rights of Muslim Americans after the 9/11 attacks. She has also drawn significant attention to the prevalence of police surveillance of Muslim Americans. Sarsour has shown her dedication to other causes such as the #BlackLivesMatter movement, and has frequently supported gender equality initiatives. She worked with Perez as a Co-Chair of the Women’s March on Washington, and Sarsour has been recognized by Obama as a “champion of change.”
Tamika Mallory: Tamika Mallory has been involved in civic engagement and political activism since childhood. She worked in various positions, including Executive Director, at Reverend Al Sharpton’s National Action Network for over 14 years. Upon stepping down from her position at NAN to pursue her own activism goals, Mallory focused on promoting stricter gun regulation, supporting women’s rights, and drawing attention to police violence and brutality. She has worked with Perez as a member of the board of directors of The Gathering for Justice, and with Perez and Sarsour, served as a Co-Chair of the Women’s March on Washington.
Co-sponsored with the Women*s Center and the Carl A. Fields Center for Equality and Cultural Understanding.