D-L Stewart to Keynote Otelia Cromwell Day

Scholar and activist D-L Stewart will deliver the keynote address at this year’s celebration of Otelia Cromwell Day at 1 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 1, in John M. Greene Hall.

Stewart’s talk is open to the public at no charge.

Stewart—a professor at Colorado State University’s School of Education—will speak on “(Re)Living Hope.” The present times offer many challenges to maintaining hope as we are inundated with reports of persistent failures to honor human dignity. In this talk, Stewart will discuss the importance of Paulo Freire’s notion of “critical hope,” where hope should be laid, and what this means for community.

The theme of this year’s Otelia Cromwell Day celebration is “Healing and Resistance Through Community.” Afternoon and evening classes are not held on Otelia Cromwell Day.

About D-L Stewart
Dafina-Lazarus (D-L) Stewart is professor in the School of Education at Colorado State University, where they also co-chair the student affairs in higher education programs. Stewart—who uses pronouns they/them/their and he/him/his—is a scholar, educator, and activist focused on empowering and imagining futures that sustain and cultivate the learning, growth, and success of minoritized groups in postsecondary education.

Stewart’s work is motivated by an ethic of love grounded in justice and informed by an intersectional framework that recognizes both the lived experiences of individuals with multiple marginalities, as well as the material effects of interlocking systems of oppression. Over the course of a 17-year faculty career, Stewart has focused most intently on issues of race and ethnicity, sexuality and gender, as well as religion, faith and spirituality.

Stewart is the author of more than four dozen journal articles and book chapters, and is editor, co-editor or author of four books covering multicultural student services; gender and sexual diversity of U.S. college students; the historical experiences of Black collegians in northern liberal arts colleges in the middle of the 20th century; and rethinking student development theory through critical perspectives.

Stewart has provided professional service and leadership to a number of scholarly and professional associations, most substantively through a variety of roles in ACPA—College Student Educators International, as well as for the Association for the Study of Higher Education. Stewart was recognized as an ACPA Senior Scholar in March 2017 and was the program chair for the 2018 ASHE annual meeting.

About Otelia Cromwell Day
Otelia Cromwell Day is named for Smith’s first African American graduate, who passed away in 1972 at the age of 98. Born in Washington, D.C., Otelia Cromwell was also the first African American woman to receive a degree from Yale University.

A teacher and scholar, Cromwell accomplished her most significant work, The Life of Lucretia Mott, after she retired from teaching. The book, published in 1958 by Harvard University Press, continues to be cited by contemporary scholars.

Smith President Emerita Mary Maples Dunn initiated Otelia Cromwell Day in 1989 as an opportunity for education and reflection by the campus community about issues of diversity and racism.

Additional information about Otelia Cromwell Day is available online