Campus News

School of Social Work lecture series will examine human rights issues

The School of Social Work will host lectures this fall that focus on international social work and human rights issues.

The lectures are part of a class being taught by Obie Clayton, the inaugural Donald L. Hollowell Distinguished Professor of Social Justice and Civil Rights Studies. Open free to the public, they will feature speakers from a variety of professional, academic, political, community action, social welfare and legal backgrounds. The lectures will held at 2 p.m. in the M. Smith Griffith Auditorium of the Georgia Museum of Art.  

The lecture series will open Oct. 22 with Carlis Williams, regional director, Administration for Children and Families, Region IV. Williams provides executive leadership, coordination and direction for ACF human service programs, including Head Start, child welfare, foster care, adoption, childcare, developmental disabilities, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, child support, and runaway and homeless youths. 

On Oct. 29, Leah Sears, former chief justice of the Georgia Supreme Court, will speak. Sears has issued critical decisions in high profile cases concerning due process, as well as the first (freedom of religion, press and expression), fourth (freedom from search and seizure), sixth (right to speedy trial) and eighth (cruel and unusual punishments) amendments of the U.S. Constitution.

Harriett Elam-Thomas, former ambassador to Senegal, U.S. Department of State, will close the lecture series on Nov. 12. In September 2005, Elam-Thomas retired from the U.S. Senior Foreign Service with the rank of career minister. During her four-decade Foreign Service career, she worked to bridge international cultures. Her overseas assignments took her to Greece, Turkey, France, Belgium, Senegal, Mali and Cote d’Ivoire. Domestic assignments included counselor and acting deputy director of the U.S. Information Agency, now a part of the Department of State; Foreign Service personnel in Washington, D.C.; the United Nations and the White House.