(courtesy The Minnesota Department of Human Rights)
The Minnesota Department of Human Rights held a 50th anniversary celebration at the State Capitol Rotunda April 27th. Distinguished speakers and an artistic performance celebrated the successes of MDHR in protecting human rights.
The event, which featured the theme "Creating a More Perfect Union", included keynote speakers Dr. Josie Johnson and Dr. Duchess Harris. Dr. Johnson, a legendary Civil Rights leader and the first African American Regent at the University of Minnesota, provided remarks on the history leading up to the creation of the Minnesota Department of Human Rights in 1967. Dr. Harris, chair of American Studies at Macalester College and co-author of Hidden Human Computers: The Black Women of NASA, provided insight to the Department's work to eliminate discrimination over the last 50 years. Deneane Richburg, artistic director and founder of Brownbody, and Thomasina Petrus, Penumbra Theatre Company member, performed for the audience of 150 people. Additionally, members of the legislature provided statements throughout the event.