Food for thought at Philander | Arkansas Blog

Food for thought at Philander



Philander Smith College President Walter Kimbrough's Bless the Mic lecture series continues at 7 Wednesday night with a famous name -- Ward Connerly, the black Californian who's led efforts to tear down affirmative action programs. The lecture is in the college auditorium Admission is free, but seats are first-come, first-served.

News release on the jump.


The final speaker in the 2006-2007 “Bless the Mic” lecture series at Philander Smith College will be Ward Connerly, who will speak at 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 11, in the M.L. Harris Auditorium.

Author of the 2002 autobiography Creating Equal: My Fight Against Race Preferences, Ward Connerly is founder and chairman of the American Civil Rights Institute, a national, not-for-profit organization aimed at educating the public about the need to move beyond race and, specifically, racial and gender preferences for all.

As a member of the University of California Board of Regents, Connerly focused the attention of the nation on the university's race-based system of preferences in its admissions policy. In July 2005, following Connerly's lead, a majority of the Regents voted to end the University's use of race as a means for admissions.  His 12-year term as a UC Regent ended in 2005.

Also in 1995, Connerly became chairman of the California Civil Rights Initiative (Proposition 209) campaign. Under his leadership, the campaign successfully obtained more than 1 million signatures and qualified for the November 1996 ballot. California voters passed Proposition 209 by a 55 percent to 45 percent margin.  He has also led the efforts to pass initiatives in the states of Washington and Michigan, both patterned after California's Proposition 209, to require equal treatment under the law for all residents in public education, public employment and public contracting.

As president and CEO of the Sacramento, Calif.,―based Connerly and Associates, Inc., an association management and land development consulting firm founded in 1973, Connerly is regarded as an expert on housing and development issues.

Of the final lecture in the ’06-’07 series, PSC President Walter Kimbrough, Ph.D., said, “Bless the Mic has become an important vehicle in which the community can come together for thought-provoking and stimulating lectures. In the wake of Proposition 2 passing in Michigan last November, Ward Connerly's upcoming visit provides us a chance to better understand those who feel the country has no further need for affirmative action.”

 “Bless the Mic” lectures are free; seating is first come, first serve. Tickets are not required. For more information, contact Sericia Rouse at (501) 370-5279 or via e-mail at


Comments (2)

Showing 1-2 of 2

Add a comment

Add a comment