Donna Shalala, president of the Clinton Foundation and former University of Wisconsin-Madison Chancellor and Zimbabwe humanitarian Tererai Trent headline a public slate of speakers for the 2016 Summit on Women, Gender and Well-being, now in its 39th year. The conference happens over three days with breakout sessions considering the junction of women, gender and social justice.
Shalala, recipient of the Nelson Mandela Award for Human Rights and former U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, will consider the status of women and well-being in Wisconsin and the world during a talk on Saturday, April 16.
Trent, who has been called Oprah’s favorite guest, champions a new future for women and girls around the world in her presentation Friday, April 15.
The public sessions of the summit will be live-streamed.
In 2016, the University of Wisconsin Women’s and Gender Studies Consortium and the UW-Madison 4W (Women and Well-being in Wisconsin and the World) Initiative join forces to broaden the reach and scope of the annual event. The summit brings together state and global activists, students, community leaders and the general public around issues to improve the lives of women and all. The Summit presents a new vision of research to action, built upon four decades of teaching, learning, scholarship and field work of the larger University of Wisconsin women’s and gender studies learning community.
For the first time, the summit includes six keynote and plenary sessions that are free and open to the public. From Shalala looking at the status of women and well-being in the world and Trent’s call for action, these open sessions look at a new future for women’s health, the roots of human trafficking and initiatives to stop it and stories of Latina women’s strength across generations.
Public Session Schedule
Locations: Most sessions are in the Alumni Lounge, Pyle Center, 702 Langdon Street. Tererai Trent will speak in Room 1306 of the Health Sciences Learning Center (HSLC), 750 Highland Avenue. The 80 Bus runs to the HSLC. Free parking is available in Lot 60 after 4:30 p.m.
Thursday April 14
6:00 pm – Human Trafficking: What’s the Real Story?
- CBS Travel Editor Peter Greenberg and anti-trafficking expert Michele Clark Executive Director Artworks for Freedom, discuss how the media tells the story of human trafficking and why it matters.
7:15 pm – The Transformation of Women’s Health
- Richard Davidson, founder of the Center for Healthy Minds at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Melanie Contreras founder of Women to Women by Julia, a non-profit dedicated to transforming the lives of women are joined by panelists from Curemark, eMindful, The Sweat Life, University of Colorado-Boulder, Georgetown Medical School.
Friday April 15
9:30 a.m. – Nuestra Historia: Stories of Strength and Struggle Across Generations
- Maria Cotera, University of Michigan; Andrea “Tess” Arenas, University of Wisconsin, and Linda Garcia Merchant, Chicana filmmaker, present this plenary session.
4:15 pm – Tererai Trent: Dreams from Adversity: Championing a New Future for Women and Girls
LOCATION – Room 1306 Health Sciences Learning Center – Reception follows talk
- Trent grew up in a cattle-herding family in rural Zimbabwe and always dreamed of getting an education. Limited by traditional Zimbabwean culture, she was married with three children by the time she was 18. Undeterred by traditional roles and cultural norms, Tererai determinedly taught herself to read and write from her brother’s schoolbooks. With a desire to give back to her community and the firm belief that education is the pathway out of poverty, Trent founded Tinogona Foundation, a non-profit organization that works to build, repair and renovate schools in rural Zimbabwe. Through strategic partnerships with Oprah Winfrey and Save the Children, Tinogona is helping build nine schools, improving the lives for nearly 4,000 children. Using her prominent global platform in conjunction with world leaders and international audiences, Tererai tirelessly speaks on behalf of children without an access to education.
Saturday April 16
8:30 a.m. – Social Transformations to End Exploitation and Trafficking for Sex (STREETS)
- Jean M. Geran and Araceli Alonso, co directors, UW-STREETS initiative, and Amy Bintliff, STREETS project assistant discuss new anti-trafficking initiative on campus that seeks to support local and global work to end trafficking and other forms of sexual exploitation.
11:30 a.m. – Women, Well-being, Wisconsin, the World
- Dr. Donna Shalala, president, Clinton Foundation, introduced by UW-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank
The summit is hosted by the UW Consortium on Gender and Women’s Studies and the 4W Initiative. 4W is convened by the Global Health Institute, the School of Human Ecology and the Department of Gender and Women’s Studies.