The Buck Colbert Franklin Memorial Civil Rights Lecture - Connie Rice

Renowned civil rights attorney and community activist Connie Rice will deliver the 10th Annual Buck Colbert Franklin Memorial Civil Rights Lecture April 7, 2010 at The University of Tulsa College of Law.

The lecture, which will begin at 7:30 p.m., is free and open to the public. It will be held in the Price & Turpen Courtroom of John Rogers Hall, 3120 E. 4th Pl.

Rice cofounded the Advancement Project in 1999 with other civil rights lawyers from the NAACP Legal Defense Fund who envisioned new ways to secure equity and expand opportunity for low income people of color. Located in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., the Advancement Project focuses on changing large scale public systems that can greatly help or hinder low income and vulnerable people. The California offices, where Rice is based, have helped secure billions of dollars for better schools and safer communities in Los Angeles and throughout the state.

Prior to cofounding the Advancement Project, Rice was Co-Director of the Los Angeles office of the NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund; an associate at the law firm of Morrison & Foerster; and a clerk to the Honorable Damon J. Keith, Senior Judge of the United States Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit. She is a graduate of Harvard College and the New York University School of Law. In 2006, Los Angeles Times West Magazine named her one of the 100 most powerful people in Southern California, and California Law Business twice named her one of the top 10 most influential lawyers in California.

The Buck Colbert Franklin Memorial Civil Rights Lecture honors one of the first black attorneys in Tulsa and in Oklahoma. In the aftermath of the 1921 Tulsa Race Riot, Franklin served his community and his profession by assisting victims of the riot. Working in a tent, because his office and home were destroyed, he represented clients, filed briefs and fought back against the injustice of the riot and the city’s assault on the Tulsa black community. He won a critical court decision striking down a city ordinance designed to prevent blacks from rebuilding their homes in Tulsa.

This year’s lecture also honors the memory of John Hope Franklin, Buck Franklin’s son and renowned historian. John Hope Franklin delivered the inaugural Buck Colbert Franklin Memorial Civil Rights Lecture in 2000. He died March 25, 2009.