October 3, 2002
NOTED SMITH ALUMNAE, INCLUDING
GLORIA STEINEM AND MOLLY IVINS, TO REFLECT ON THE CIVIC RESPONSIBILITIES
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
OF TODAY'S COLLEGES AND THEIR GRADUATES
Inauguration Weekend Panel
Discussion To Consider Smith As
"A Private College With A Public Conscience"
Editor's note: Panelists may
be available for phone interviews in advance of the event or
in-person interviews on the day of the event. Contact Laurie
Fenlason at (413) 585-2190 or firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange.
NORTHAMPTON, Mass.-Six Smith alumnae
noted for their civic engagement and activism will gather on
Saturday, Oct. 19, to discuss "Smith: A Private College
with a Public Conscience," a theme Smith's new president,
Carol T. Christ, has set for her administration.
The panel discussion, which is free, open to the public and wheelchair
accessible, will take place at 3:30 p.m. in Sweeney Concert Hall,
Sage Hall. It is part of the weekend of festivities marking Christ's
Participants in the panel discussion are Linda Smith Charles,
deputy director of human resources at the Ford Foundation; Julia
Erickson, executive director of New York's City Harvest; Katrina
Gardner, Peace Corps worker in Nepal; Molly Ivins, journalist
and author; Shirley Sagawa, former executive director of Americorps;
and Gloria Steinem, writer, editor and activist.
Linda Smith Charles, Smith Class of 1974, assumed her present
position as deputy director for human resources at the Ford Foundation
in 1999. Previously, she had worked at Bell Laboratories and
AT&T. She has been active in a number of philanthropic and
civic activities over the years and is a member of the college's
diversity board of counselors.
Julia Erickson, Smith Class of 1980, is the executive
director of City Harvest, the largest and oldest food rescue
program in the world. Before assuming her current position,
Erickson was associate commissioner for public/private initiatives
at the New York City department of employment. Last year, City
Harvest collected nearly 16 million pounds of food that would
otherwise have been wasted, which it transported to more than
800 community food programs, helping to feed more than 195,000
hungry people in New York each week.
Katrina Gardner, Smith Class of 2000, is in her second year
as a Peace Corps volunteer in Baitadi, Nepal, where she teaches
in a government-run primary school and has undertaken many other
community-building activities for the children and families of
the village. At Smith, Gardner majored in neuroscience and held
internships with the largest public hospital in Quito, Ecuador;
at a primary care clinic in New York City; and at the department
of labor in Washington, D.C. She was active in the student government
association at Smith, serving as its president during her senior
year, and after graduating, became a trustee of the college.
Smith Class of 1966, is a best-selling author and syndicated
columnist for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Widely known for
her wit and political punditry, she is the former co-editor of
the Texas Observer and former Rocky Mountain bureau chief for
The New York Times. Her freelance work has appeared in many magazines,
and she is a frequent guest on network radio and television shows.
She has served on the board of the National News Council and
has been active in Amnesty International's Journalism Network
and the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press.
Smith Class of 1983, is a co-founder and principal of a consulting
firm that defines and guides the social ventures of corporations
and nonprofit institutions. She served from 1998 to 2001 as deputy
assistant to the President and deputy chief of staff to the First
Lady in the Clinton administration. From 1997 to 1998, she was
the executive director of Learning First Alliance, a national
organization designed to improve learning in elementary and secondary
schools. From 1993 to 1997, she served as managing director and
held several other leadership positions in the Corporation for
National Service, whose programs include Americorps.
Smith Class of 1956, is a writer, editor and feminist activist
tireless in her efforts to promote equality for women around
the world. With Dorothy Pitman Hughes, she founded Ms. magazine
in the early 1970s, which became an influential forum for feminist
issues. She was a founder of the National Women's Political Caucus,
the Coalition of Labor Union Women and the Ms. Foundation for
Women and Voters for Choice. In 1993, she was inducted into the
National Women's Hall of Fame in Seneca Falls, N.Y.
Sagawa will serve as moderator for
Smith College is consistently ranked
among the nation's foremost liberal arts colleges. Enrolling
2,800 students from every state and 55 other countries, Smith
is the largest undergraduate women's college in the country.
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