Speaker to discuss racial injustice and criminal justice system

First published in Around the O on February 1st. UO advising and inclusion leader Kimberly Johnson will address how racial injustice in the criminal justice system leads to mass incarceration and excessive punishment, and its broader implications for social justice action in an online address.

Johnson’s talk, “How Far Do You Have to go for Justice? Acting Beyond the Vote,” is part of the African American Workshop and Lecture series and will take place virtually Feb. 9 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Johnson is the UO assistant vice provost for advising and director for the Center for Multicultural Academic Excellence and is a UO alumna.

 Johnson is the author of the critically acclaimed young adult novel “This is My America,” which is the current UO Common Read selection. “This is My America” tells the story of 17-year-old Tracy Beaumont in a race against time to seek justice for her father, wrongly accused and sentenced to death row, while her brother, a promising track star, is unjustly accused of killing a young white woman.

Provost Patrick Philliips said he is inspired by Johnson’s work at the university and in her new novel.

“While we are inspired by all our speakers and what lessons and wisdom they bring, particularly during these challenging times, it’s also critical for us to realize the wisdom and inspiration we have here at the UO,” he said. “Johnson has long been a guide, a role model and a leader for our students, as well as for our staff and faculty. With her new book out in the world, others are getting to see the insight, courage and compassion that she brings to all she does. We hope many will come hear her.”

An RSVP is required by Feb 8. For more information see the Division of Equity and Inclusion website.

—By tova stabin, University Communications