2010: A Freedom Odyssey


Connie Rice

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This year’s lecture also honors the memory of John Hope Franklin, Buck Franklin’s son and renowned historian. John Hope Franklin delivered the inaugural Buck Colbert Franklin Memorial Civil Rights Lecture in 2000. He died March 25, 2009.

Rice also appeared on TU Public Radio's Studio Tulsa to discuss her lecture.

Rice cofounded the Advancement Project in 1999 with other civil rights lawyers from the NAACP Legal Defense Fund who envisioned new ways to secure equity and expand opportunity for low income people of color. Located in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., the Advancement Project focuses on changing large scale public systems that can greatly help or hinder low income and vulnerable people. The California offices, where Rice is based, have helped secure billions of dollars for better schools and safer communities in Los Angeles and throughout the state.

Prior to cofounding the Advancement Project, Rice was Co-Director of the Los Angeles office of the NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund; an associate at the law firm of Morrison & Foerster; and a clerk to the Honorable Damon J. Keith, Senior Judge of the United States Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit. She is a graduate of Harvard College and the New York University School of Law. In 2006, Los Angeles Times West Magazine named her one of the 100 most powerful people in Southern California, and California Law Business twice named her one of the top 10 most influential lawyers in California.