Social Justice Week and SSU lecture series to feature Angela Davis, Noam Chomsky

February 26, 2020
Angela Davis

Angela Davis is slated to speak before a sold-out audience at the Green Music Center’s Weill Hall on Tuesday, March 3.

Sonoma State Social Justice Week
Angela Davis
Sonoma State Social Justice Week

(Rohnert Park) — An address by political activist and author Angela Davis will be the cornerstone event of Social Justice Week at Sonoma State next week.

Davis, who has frequently highlighted her work with communities struggling against economic, racial and gender injustice, is slated to speak before a sold-out audience at the Green Music Center’s Weill Hall on Tuesday, March 3. “An Evening with Angela Davis,” is part of Sonoma State University’s Social Justice Week and is held in conjunction with the H. Andréa Neves and Barton Evans Social Justice Lecture Series. A free live stream of the lecture will be available in the Weill Hall lobby on a first-come, first-served basis.

“Angela Davis has inspired generations of activists devoted to the cause of civil rights and women’s rights,” said Provost Lisa Vollendorf. “She is an icon of our age — one who is rightly honored at the National Museum of African American History and Culture. Her ability to confront injustice and inspire others to follow in her path is truly remarkable.”

The H. Andréa Neves and Barton Evans Social Justice Lecture Series is sponsored by Neves and her late husband, former Silicon Valley engineer and executive, Barton Evans. Co-hosted annually by the School of Education and School of Social Sciences, the series invites a distinguished and inspiring speaker to address the topic of social justice in a public lecture for the campus community.

Noam Chomsky, one of the most revered public intellectuals in the nation, also will be speaking on campus as part of the Social Justice Lecture Series later in the month. In collaboration with Project Censored, “An Evening with Noam Chomsky” will be held at 7 p.m. on March 23 in the Grand Ballroom in the Student Center. Tickets are free for SSU Students and general admission is $15.

“Noam Chomsky is the most cited progressive intellectual in the world,” said Sonoma State professor of sociology Peter Phillips. “He holds a deep understanding for the socio-economic circumstances of our times and is renowned for speaking truth to power.”

Social Justice Week features panels, lectures and performances free to the public that raise awareness on topics ranging from inequality, climate change and homelessness. Next week’s discussions and lectures will be led by organizations such as Homeless Now!, CodePink and Occupy Sonoma County.

Cosponsored by Associated Students, Project Censored, multiple departments on campus and others, Social Justice Week will kick off with an introduction and welcome by Jerlena Griffin-Desta, associate vice president for Strategic Initiative and Diversity, and others at noon on Monday, March 2. All events will be held in the Student Center Ballroom A and are free for the campus community. Donations will be accepted at the door.

“Social Justice week addresses key issues of racism, sexism, violence and inequality while seeking to empower us all to make changes in ourselves and the world,” said Phillips.

ABOUT US: With a student population of about 9,000, Sonoma State is a regionally serving public university committed to educational access and excellence. Guided by our core values and driven by a commitment to the liberal arts and sciences, Sonoma State delivers high-quality education through innovative programs that leverage the economic, cultural and natural resources of the North Bay. See more news from SSU at

Full Social Justice Week schedule 

All events are located in Student Center Ballroom A (unless otherwise noted)

Monday,  March 2

12:00 - 1:00 p.m. — Social Justice Week Introduction and Welcome: Dr. Jerlena Griffin-Desta, Associate Vice President for Strategic Initiatives and Diversity; Dr. Maureen Buckley, Interim Dean, School of Social Sciences; Dr. Peter Phillips, Sociology Department; Dr. Diana Grant, Criminology and Criminal Justice Studies Department

1:00 - 2:30 p.m. — Michael Nagler:  Metta Center for Nonviolence:  "Nonviolent Action for Climate Change and Democracy.  Film: The Third Harmony."

2:45 - 4:00 p.m. — Susan Lamont, Committee to Support an Effective IOLERO:  Community and Law Enforcement Relations: At the Crossroads 

4:15 - 5:30 p.m. — Peter Phillips: The Global Power Elite) Challenging the 1%

6:00 - 7:00 p.m. — Ballet Folklorico Netzahualcoyotl: Grace De La Cruz 

7:15 - 9:00 p.m. — Penny Rosenwasser: Author: Hope into Practice, Jewish women choosing justice despite our fears. In these perilous times of rising anti-Semitism, racism, and white nationalism — including deportation of immigrants, Islamophobia, misogyny, and transphobia — Penny’s words are an activist’s call to heal the world! Her interactive talk about her book is full of stories linking personal healing with social justice.

Tuesday, March 3

10:00 - 11:15 a.m. — Dayton Andrews and colleagues, United Front Against Displacement: Solidarity Between Homeless and Housed People: Building a Larger Movement Beyond Struggles Against Displacement

11:20 - 12:15 p.m. — Waging Peace in Vietnam:  U.S. Soldiers and Veterans who Opposed the War, Ron Carver and Barbara Doherty, Photo Exhibit

12:20 - 1:30 p.m. — What is the Price We Pay for Perpetual War?: Fred Ptucha, Peter Tracy, Susan Lamont, Tom Meier, Veterans for Peace

2:00 - 3:00 p.m. — Low Wage and Immigrant Workers Rising Up in the North Bay: Mara Ventura and Tom Woods

3:00 - 4:30 p.m. — Social Justice and the Census: Marianna Yamamoto of NALEO, and Soo- Yoon, Willie Gin, Diana Grant:

5:00 - 6:15 p.m. — TLC Child and Family Services: Andy Day  

7:00 - 9:00 p.m., Green Music Center The H. Andrea Neves and Barton Evans Social Justice Lecture Series presents Angela Davis: Political Activist Angela Davis discusses social justice and what we can do to contribute to a more just world

Wednesday, March 4

10:00 - 11:00 a.m. — Santa Rosa Homelessness in Sonoma County: Adrienne Lauby, Homeless Action! and Celeste Austin, The Living Room

11:30-12:30 p.m. — Turning Fear into Power: Linda Sartor: Stories that Inspire Following your Heart Even When Fear is Present 

1:00-2:15 p.m. — Understanding Sexual Violence: Jessica Stillman, Verity:

2:30-3:30 p.m. — Friends of Public Banking Sonoma County: Philip Beard, Debora Hammond 

3:45-4:45 p.m. — U.S. Killer Drones: Toby Blomé, CODEPINK: Resisting Racist Tools of U.S. Empire

5-8:00 p.m. — The Canary in the Coal Mine of Corporate Disinformation: Dennis Bernstein and Miguel Molina, KPFA FLASHPOINTS

Thursday , March 5

10:30 - 11:30 a.m. — Restorative Resources – Restorative justice work with juveniles: Jane Weil

12:00 - 1:00 p.m. — Climate Change Requires Direct Action: Rebel Fagin, Occupy Sonoma County 

1:15 - 2:45 p.m. — Mary Carouba, Women at Ground Zero. “Mary delivers a lively and candid presentation about her inspirational journey through post-9/11 New York City as she and her co-author, Susan Hagen, sought to shed light on the thousands of female rescue workers rendered virtually invisible by gender-imbalanced reporting.”

3:00 - 4:30 p.m. — Round Table Evaluation of Peace and Justice for all: Shekeyna Black and Attila Nagy Sonoma County Peace and Justice Center

5:00 - 6:30 p.m. — The World Is My Country: A Documentary Film Screening & Discussion: Bob Flax, Global Solutions  

7:00 - 9:00 p.m. — Faculty Panel: Social Justice and Human Rights Realities: Brian Burton,  Ron Lopez, Napoleon Reyes, Benjamin Smith, Kyla Walters, Chingling Wo

Friday March 6

10:00 - 11:30 a.m. — Global Warming Dangers: José Javier Hernández Ayala

12:00 - 1:30 p.m. — US Drug Policies: Nicole Wolfe

2:00 - 3:30 p.m. — What to Expect with U.S./Cuba Relations in the Trump Era, Venezuela-what the US corporate media doesn’t want you to know: Alicia Jrapko, U.S. Coordinator of the International Committee for Peace, Justice and Dignity and co-chair of the National Network on Cuba

4:00 - 5:30 p.m. — A Peculiar Indifference: On Race, Violence, and Social Justice: Elliot Currie

7:00 - 9:00 p.m. — United States of Distraction: Fighting the Fake News Invasion: Mickey Huff, Film and Talk

Saturday March 7

10:00 -11:30 a.m.— China: the last 30 years: Hanson Lee and Pahn Yi

12 - 1:30 p.m. — Deep Events & Narrative Literacy in the work of Peter Dale Scott - a conversational discussion: John Bertucci

2 - 3:30 p.m. — Challenging Capitalism: SSU Socialism Club

4:00 - 5:30 p.m. — Social Justice for Palestine: North Coast Coalition for Palestine 

Media Contact

Paul Gullixson