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Civil rights legend to visit UW-Eau Claire March 2

RELEASED: Feb. 25, 2011

Minnijean Brown Trickey
Minnijean Brown Trickey

Editors Note: The media is welcome to cover Minnijean Brown Trickey's March 2 visit to campus. Reporters may interview her at 7:15 p.m. in Schofield Auditorium. Jodi Thesing-Ritter, associate dean of students, is coordinating the visit and may be reached at 715-836-2325 or thesinjm@uwec.edu.

EAU CLAIRE — A civil rights legend who helped desegregate public schools will meet with students and give a public lecture during a March 2 visit to the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.

Minnijean Brown Trickey will present "Return to Little Rock: A Seminal Moment in American Education and Civil Rights" at 7:30 p.m. March 2 in Schofield Auditorium. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Brown Trickey will also speak to the women's studies class "Women of the Civil Rights Movement" at 3:30 p.m. and join the Blugold Beginnings Learning Community students for dinner. Past or future members of the UW-Eau Claire Civil Rights Pilgrimage are invited to attend the lecture and will meet with Brown Trickey afterward.

As a teenager Brown Trickey entered the civil rights movement — and American consciousness — through the front doors of Central High School in Little Rock, Ark. As a member of the Little Rock Nine, and in defiance of the state of Arkansas, she took her place in what had previously been a whites-only school.

Walking past armed guards and an angry mob, and in front of a worldwide television audience, Brown Trickey helped desegregate public schools and change the course of education in America.

Brown Trickey also will visit Eau Claire Memorial High School for a morning lecture on March 3 and will be available for questions during lunch periods.

For her many years as a social activist, Brown Trickey has received the U.S. Congressional Medal and a medal from the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute. Under the Clinton administration, she served as deputy assistant secretary for workforce diversity in the Department of the Interior. She also is the subject of two acclaimed documentaries: "Journey to Little Rock: The Untold Story of Minnijean Brown Trickey" and HBO's "Little Rock: 50 Years Later."

Brown Trickey's UW-Eau Claire visit is sponsored by the College of Arts and Sciences, Student Affairs, women's studies program, University Activities Commission, Student Senate special allocation, Housing and Residence Life, College of Human Sciences and Services, University Centers, Visiting Minority Scholars Fund and The Forum series.

Jodi Thesing-Ritter, associate dean of students, said she's looking forward to Brown Trickey's second visit to the university.

"I've had the privilege of meeting Ms. Brown Trickey several times," she said. "I am continually impressed with her willingness to tell her painful story as a means of inspiring all of us to work for justice in our world. Ms. Brown Trickey is a wonderful role model and change agent."

For more information, contact Jodi Thesing-Ritter at 715-836-2325 or thesinjm@uwec.edu.

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BS/RD/DW

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