Diversifying The Diversity Dinner

This is the first time the Division of Institutional Diversity, Equity and Community Engagement has brought a multiracial female as the keynote speaker at its annual Celebrate Diversity awards banquet today, according to Cory Powell, director of Mentor Tech and lead organizer of the banquet. 

Soledad O’Brien, a broadcast journalist formerly with CNN, has a lot on her plate today as she visits with not only Texas Tech University students, faculty and staff but also with students from Margaret Talkington’s School for Young Women Leaders, a public Lubbock Independent School District all-girls school dedicated to empowering young women through rigorous college preparatory education.

Powell said it was very important for these young students to hear from O’Brien.

“Her personal diversity makes her an appealing speaker in that she’s multiracial,” Powell said. “And for a woman of color to have made the strides in her field as she has, I think it’s certainly noteworthy.”

O’Brien will have an open question and answer session at the Rawls College of Business in Room 105 at 4:15 p.m. Tickets for the banquet range from $40 for students to $75 for non-students. That expense is why Paul Frazier, assistant vice president of the Division of Institutional Diversity, wanted to make sure students could still get access to O’Brien earlier in the day.

“I hope as many students as possible are able to take advantage,” Frazier said.

O’Brien continues to produce documentaries for CNN despite her regular anchoring role for “Starting Point” ending earlier this year, and she is also a special correspondent for Al Jazeera America. O’Brien also serves as the CEO for Starfish Media Group, a production company established by O’Brien to produce specials and documentaries. 

About Claudia Tristán

News Director    —    Journalism and Marketing double major, Class of 2013
Claudia works to cover current events and political issues that effect the Tech campus. She plans to return overseas as a foreign correspondent.

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