• Journal of Public Law and Policy Symposia

    Spring 2014 Symposium: The Civil Rights Act: 50 Years of Success, Development, and Transformation

    Celeste Wilson, Symposium Editor, cwilson07@hamline.edu
    Daryle Houston, Secondary Symposium Editor, dhouston01@hamline.edu

    About the Symposium

    The Journal of Public Law and Policy 2014 symposium, The Civil Rights Act: 50 Years of Success, Development, and Transformation, gathered scholars, policy makers, civil rights activists, and community members to discuss the impact of the Civil Rights Act since its formation in 1964, both nationally and in Minnesota minority communities. The central issues addressed included how things have changed since the implementation of the Act, how the Act has influenced and impacted communities in Minnesota, the reality of civil rights issues present in modern Minnesota society and underprivileged communities, and the importance of keeping oral history alive of those Minnesotans who experienced the implementation of the Act in 1964. 

    Importance of Topic

    The Civil Rights Act has had huge impact on a number of underprivileged communities. At its inception, the Act greatly affected the African American community in the area of civil rights, and this symposium seeks to emphasize the successes that various communities have felt upon enactment of the Civil Rights Act, as well as possible areas of improvement or development where the Act may have failed to help out minority communities. The question we sought to address through a well-balanced symposium is whether the Act has led to good public policy, and how the policy regarding civil rights in the state of Minnesota has thrived, or needs to be improved.

    Keynote Speakers

    • Professor Brian Landsberg, Pacific McGeorge School of Law, author of Enforcing Civil Rights: Race Discrimination and the Department of Justice
    • Professor Nekima Levy-Pounds, University of St. Thomas School of Law, Director of the Community Justice Project and Civil Rights Activist


    • Mary Jane Morrison, Professor Emeritus at Hamline University School of Law
    • Phil Duran, President of the Minnesota State Bar Association, Legal Director of OutFront Minnesota, founding Board member of the Minnesota Lavender Bar Association
    • Dr. Nancy Heitzeg, Professor of Sociology and Critical Studies of Race and Ethnicity at St. Catherine University
    • Jason Marisam, Professor at Hamline University School of Law
    • Ann Tweedy, Professor at Hamline University School of Law

    Past Symposia Topics

    Other past JPLP symposia have explored similar critical issues.