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Friday, April 14 • 3:00pm - 3:50pm
Can Civic Innovation Restore Political Civility? FULL

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In the past year, we’ve witnessed violence at political rallies, expletive-laden voicemails, name-calling, and far worse. Sixty-nine percent of Americans agree that civility in public life has declined in the last few years, and two out of three voters say that the 2016 campaign was less civil than election contests of the past.  In local, state, and national politics, even the basic legitimacy of political opponents is routinely challenged; indeed, a widening regional and cultural gulf seems to hold no room for compromise. In an era of identity politics, taunting tweets, and lying disguised as “alternative facts,” how can we find the common values, truths, and vocabulary necessary for constructive debate? These civic innovators offer bold ideas for healing the rift.

avatar for Thomas Walls

Thomas Walls

Executive Director, Thomas C. Sorensen Institute of Political Leadership at the University of Virginia
Thomas Walls has served as a senior staff member to three U.S. senators, most recently as chief counsel to Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia. He was a partner at McGuireWoods LLP and senior vice president of federal public affairs at McGuireWoods Consulting. Before joining Sorensen, Walls... Read More →

avatar for Ferki Ferati

Ferki Ferati

President, The Jefferson Educational Society
Dr. Ferki Ferati has been with The Jefferson Educational Society since its founding in 2008. He was appointed as its President in 2017.During his tenure with the Jefferson, Dr. Ferati has supervised more than 900 programs, including the nationally recognized annual Global Summit speaker... Read More →
avatar for Abby Garrison

Abby Garrison

Executive Director, Causeway
Prior to Causeway, Abby served at the Chief Operating Officer of Chattanooga Neighborhood Enterprise, a neighborhood revitalization and community development organization. Prior to graduate school, Abby lived and worked in San Francisco, where she helped launch Williams-Sonoma Home... Read More →
avatar for Pete Haga

Pete Haga

Community/Government Relations Officer, City of Grand Forks, ND
Pete Haga serves as the Community/Government Relations Officer for the City of Grand Forks. He is the Mayor’s assistant and policy advisor and works specifically with communications, federal and state government relations and on community collaborations including the GF Youth Commission... Read More →
avatar for Kent Wyatt

Kent Wyatt

Co-Founder, Engaging Local Government Leaders
Kent is the co-founder of the Engaging Local Government Leaders (ELGL). ELGL is a nationwide organization of more than 1,900 members from 40 states who are committed to connecting, educating, and communicating with all stakeholders in the local government arena.


Nina Goepfert

Scribe, Volunteer

Kathryn Hendley

Scribe, Volunteer

Friday April 14, 2017 3:00pm - 3:50pm EDT
Room 207, JSAAHC Jefferson School African American Heritage Center 233 4th St NW, Charlottesville, VA 22903