MSUB’s Power of One Week aims to raise awareness, advocacy for LGBT+ Community
January 4, 2016
Lacey Solheid, Student Engagement Coordinator, 657-2320
Carmen Price, University Relations & Communications, 657-2269
MSU BILLINGS NEWS SERVICES — Former NFL athlete Wade Davis, an advocate, writer and public speaker on race, gender and orientation equity, will present a lecture at Montana State University Billings as part of the university’s annual Power of One Week.
With an emphasis on “Challenging the Gender Binary,” the weeklong series of events will focus on gender, sexuality and the LGBT+ community.
“The week is all about defying the gender binary,” event organizer Lacey Solheid said. “The events will focus on confronting the limitations of gender classification into just two distinct forms of masculine and feminine. Gender isn’t about blue and pink.”
As part of the event to be held Jan. 18-26, former NFL player Davis will deliver his keynote address about diversity and inclusion on Jan. 20 at 7 p.m. in Petro Theater. Davis announced he was gay in 2012, nine years after the conclusion of his professional football career.
Davis has since become an advocate for the gay community with programs such as the You Can Play project, the You Belong initiative and the Hendrick-Martin Institute, an organization set up to create an environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth between the ages of 13 and 24 and their families.
Davis’ writings and interviews have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, The Huffington Post, The New York Times, The Advocate, OutSports and other media outlets, including President Barack Obama’s White House blog. He also served as the LGBT surrogate for Obama during the 2012 presidential election. In the early 2000s, Davis played for the Tennessee Titans, Washington Redskins and Seattle Seahawks as well as two teams within the NFL Europe.
The Power of One week will commence with the national bell ringing ceremony on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Jan. 18, beginning at 9:50 a.m., at Peaks to Plains Park followed by reception featuring community activist Eran Thompson, campus minister Rob Kirby and the Rev. Stacy Siebrasse of First English Lutheran Church.
The week also features a Slam Poet Performance by Brooklyn-based J. Mase III and a Tunnel of Oppression program that aims to give people a way to experience oppression in a hands-on way.
Sponsored by MSUB’s Student Activities Board, events are free and open to the public. For a full list of events, see attachment or visit www.msubillings.edu/mlk/
For more information, contact Solheid, MSUB’s student engagement coordinator, at 657-2320.