Summit to Address Race and Disability Issues in Utah

OGDEN, Utah – Gallaudet University president I. King Jordan, will be a featured speaker at a summit addressing race and disability issues in Utah.

The Race and Disability Summit will be held Oct. 2 from 9:30 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Salt Lake City Library, 210 East 400 South in Salt Lake City.

The summit provides a forum for community leaders, service providers, advocates and community and faith-based organizations to explore the complex issues surrounding race and disability in Utah. Those in attendance will examine how these factors work together to prevent consumers from accessing critically needed services and brainstorm strategies for overcoming these barriers.

Jordan will be the featured speaker at the summit. He made history in 1988 when he became the first deaf president of Gallaudet University, the world's only university with all programs and services designed specifically for students who are deaf and hard of hearing. That year Gallaudet students, with support from many alumni, faculty, staff and friends of the university, protested the board of trustees' appointment of a hearing person to the presidency.

Called Deaf President Now (DPN), the week-long protest was a watershed event in the lives of deaf and hard of hearing people all over the world. At its conclusion, the board reversed its decision and named Jordan, one of three finalists for the position, the eighth president of Gallaudet and the first deaf president since the institution was established in 1864.

The Utah summit is being held in connection with Weber State University's 5th Annual Diversity Conference, scheduled from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Oct. 3 on WSU's Ogden campus. Jordan is also the keynote speaker at the conference.

The Race and Disability Summit is sponsored by the Disability Law Center, Office of Ethnic Affairs Directors and Weber State University. Participants in the free event had to register by Sept. 22.

Eric Mitchell, Program Director Utah Disability Law Center
801-363-1347 • 
Forrest Crawford, WSU assistant to the president for diversity
801-626-7420 •
John Kowalewski, director of Media Relations
801-626-7212 ·