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Marshawn Evans
Marshawn Evans

KNOXVILLE — The fifth annual Black Issues Conference, titled “Black in America: How Far We Have Come…Yet, So Far to Go,” will come to the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, this Saturday, Feb. 6.

The event, which takes place from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the University Center, offers a forum for research and a discussion of matters affecting the African-American culture. Workshop presenters will engage conference participants in discussions and encourage them to think critically about various topics. The day will consist of three workshop sessions, lunch and a keynote speaker. A fifth-year celebration reception will round out the conference at 3:30 p.m. This year’s keynote speaker is attorney, author and entrepreneur Marshawn Evans.

Once labeled a problem child, Evans has become one of Glamour Magazine and USA Today’s top women in America. She has used her story to encourage audiences across the country through speaking engagements and on such media outlets as ABC, VH1, CNBC and PBS. As president and chief branding officer of EDGE 3M, a media, marketing and management firm for celebrities and professional athletes, she represents some of the nation’s top personalities in entertainment, the NFL and NBA.

The conference is free and open to students, professionals and the community. Participants must register online at Participants also may register on site Saturday morning. Attendees will receive a commemorative fifth annual Black Issues Conference T-shirt.

The conference is made possible through the efforts of the Black Issues Conference Planning Committee, UT Chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, Charlie Lemmons Endowment, Black Cultural Programming Committee, Office of Minority Student Affairs, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Office of Student Affairs, Office of the Dean of Students, Office of Disability Services, Office of Student Activities, UT Bookstore, Office of Equity and Diversity, Commission for Blacks and the UT Black Alumni Council.

The Black Issues Conference is just one of many events on the UT Knoxville campus in February to celebrate Black History Month. Other events include:

  • Scholar’s Bowl – Black History Edition, 6 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 9, at the Black Cultural Center;
  • An evening with Joe Clark, subject of the 1989 film “Lean On Me,” 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 11, in the University Center auditorium;
  • Soul Food Dinner, 4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 14, at the Black Cultural Center;
  • Grupa de Rua, Brazililan hip-hop dance company, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 16, at the Bijou Theatre;
  • Mahogany Soul Café, 6 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 23, at the Black Cultural Center;
  • African American Image Awards, 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 25, in the University Center auditorium; and
  • Miss Black & Gold Scholarship Pageant, 3:06 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 27, in the University Center auditorium.

For more information on the Black Issues Conference or other Black History Month events, contact the Office of Minority Student Affairs at 974-6861.

C O N T A C T :

Rebekah Winkler (865-974-8304,