Over the last few generations, America has been asked countless times to define – and redefine – the concept of “Family”. And while Hallmark may have a gold star placed on that Mom, Dad, 2.5 kids and Buster-the-friendly-retriever “sweet spot” so often favored as a generic and safe poster ideal, the true diversities present behind the simple word are finally being allowed some well-earned breathing room. A “family” – in my humble opinion – is really nothing more or less than a collection of individuals (blood relation optional) who share a bond that spans time, distance and fights over dishes; a hodgepodge of those who have our heart – and our back – regardless of how many times we shake our fists to their noses. Empowering black families for the future – in whatever form they may take – will be the focus of this year’s annual Dr. Joseph H. McMillan National Conference on the Black Family in America hosted this weekend, Friday through Sunday, March 9th through 11th by the University of Louisville.
This year’s keynote speaker for the conference is author and radio host, Michael Eric Dyson. Enumerating on the weekend’s theme, “Strengthening and Empowering the Black Family for the Future”, Dyson will deliver his address over dinner this Saturday, March 10th at 7pm at the Hilton Garden Inn. Dyson, a seasoned author of 17 books (whew) is the voice behind the aptly named radio program, The Michael Eric Dyson Show, as well as a regular commentator on other popular broadcasts such as NPR, CNN and Real Time with Bill Maher.
Named by Ebony as one of the hundred most influential black Americans, Dyson’s written contributions include acclaimed titles such as Is Bill Cosby Right?, I May Not Get There with You: The True Martin Luther King Jr. and the New York Times Notable Book of the Year, Making Malcolm: The Myth and Meaning of Malcolm X . In addition to working as a political analyst for MSNBC, Dyson is also a professor of Sociology at Georgetown University.
Tickets for dinner and what could only be a dynamic address with Dyson are $80 per person. Additional information, registration and tickets for the keynote address – and for other conference events – can be purchased online. Got family? Get empowered and don’t miss this opportunity to think tank with one of the nation’s most influential doers.
All conference events will be held at the Hilton Garden Inn located near the University of Louisville’s Belknap Campus at 2735 Crittenden Drive.
Photo: Courtesy of Michael Eric Dyson’s website www.michaelericdyson.com