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Symposium on Race & Society
In Katrina's Wake: Racial Implications of the New Orleans Disaster. November 2-4 2006, Charlottesville Virginia
About the Conference

The University of Virginia Symposium on Race and Society (SYMRS) is an annual conference engaging academic professionals on social, cultural, and political topics as they relate to the meeting's theme. The theme for 2007 is At The Crossroads: The Racial Implications of America's Health Care Crisis. The event's success will be judged on our ability to increase understanding on the racial dynamics in health care and our ability to mobilize people make an impact on the crisis.

This gathering will provide an opportunity for all members of the community to voice their perspectives on the racial implications of health disparities in America.

Sunday September 30
The Symposium will start Sunday with a Day of Remembrance honoring the victims of health disparities. A Community Candlelight Vigil will take place on the front steps of the University of Virginia Rotunda. This is a family friendly event. The Rotunda is located at the corner of University Avenue and Rugby Road on the main campus of the University of Virginia. Directions

Monday October 1 and Tuesday October 2
The conference portion of the Symposium will follow the life cycles of three key health crises and their racial implications: Cancer, Diabetes and HIV. Primary themes include Social Justice, Social Determinants, Marginalized Populations, Research and Intervention.

Monday evening, an award ceremony will highlight individuals taking action to improve community health and reduce health disparities. Highlight of evening will be the Vivian Pinn Award Lecture "Disparity Vulnerability" presented by Chester Pierce, MD, Professor of Education and Psychiatry, Emeritus, Harvard University .

Closing the Symposiums' first powerful day will be a screening of Scott MacTavish's documentary SUMMER RUNNING: The Race To Cure Breast Cancer. SUMMER RUNNING is a highly acclaimed and uplifting documentary about courageous women who wage very different fights against breast cancer. The film includes an introduction by Oscar-winning actress Sissy Spacek and profiles the astonishing work done by researchers and doctors from The University of Virginia, Johns Hopkins University and the nation's leading private research facilities.

Sunday September 30 to Tuesday October 2
Bridging last year's Symposium exploration on Katrina, esteemed photographer Bill Auth will exhibit photos from his Summer 2007 visit to Biloxi , Mississippi. His work will explore the area's spiritual renewal and physical rebuilding efforts. Photos will be exhibited on the Jordan Hall Conference Center.

A collection of notable papers will be published to increase awareness and discussion on these key issues.

Conference Registration:

The Conference Registration is FREE and includes refreshments at each Symposium event including the Awards Reception. All members of the community are welcome. Register by email at symrs@virginia.edu . Please include your Name, Address and Affiliation.

All contributions to the event will be donated to community-based programs working to eliminate health disparities. If you would like to make a contribution please contact Leslie Beller at lbeller@virginia.edu or call (434) 243-9542.

Featured Speakers:

Chester Pierce, MD, Professor of Education and Psychiatry, Emeritus, Harvard University .
Dr. Chester Pierce is leading figure in mainstream American psychiatry holding such posts as president of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology and president of the American Orthopsychiatric Association. He is also a founding chairman of the Black Psychiatrists of America.

Daren Anderson, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Community Health Center, Inc., Middletown, CT; Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine at Yale School of Medicine; and Principle Investigator, RWJ Project for Advancing Diabetes Self-Management

Ms. Yvette Highsmith-Francis, Site Director, Community Health Center, Inc., Middletown , CT
Ms. Yvette Highsmith-Francis has over 15 years of experience in social/human services, health care settings. Yvette received her undergraduate degree from Long Island University and her graduate degree from Cambridge College . She has served as the co-chair for the Greater Hartford Ryan White Title I Planning Council; she was recognized by Hartford 's Mayor Eddie Perez in 2004 for her leadership in AIDS services throughout the state. She also received the NAACP's Health Leadership Award in 2005.

This event is made possible through the generous support of the following organizations:

Corporate Partner: Pfizer Public Health and Policy Group

Community Partner: The Quality Community Council

University Partners:
University of Virginia Department of Family Medicine
University of Virginia Medical Center
University of Virginia School of Medicine
Master of Public Health Program
University of Virginia School of Nursing

(Listed in order of sponsorship contribution)

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Photo, AP Images/Eric Gay
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Last Modified: 21-Sep-2007 13:01:22 EDT
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