Duke Community Gathers to Reflect on Chauvin Verdict and the History of Violence agaisnt Black Americans

Thursday, April 22, 2021

On April 21, more than 150 members of the Duke community gathered in front of Duke Chapel to share thoughts on the guilty verdict of Minneapolis policeman Derek Chauvin in the murder of George Floyd, a verdict that Trinity College Dean Valerie Ashby described as a “ray of light in a sea of darkness.” The event was organized by the Office of Undergraduate Education and the Office of Student Affairs in hopes that students could have a safe place to hear from Black campus leaders and to share a moment in community with one another following another series of police killings of Black Americans that has deepened the trauma experienced by the Black community. Speakers included Dr. Gary Bennet, Quinton Smith, Dr. Mark Anthony Neal, John Blackshear, and Dean Valerie Ashby. Trinity College of Arts & Sciences Dean Valerie Ashby and several Black leaders at Duke reflected on the jury's verdict in the trial of Derek Chauvin. Dean Ashby Reflects on Racism and Injustice in America: "But I just say to all those students, particularly, who are out there: My people come from Middle Passage. And I am never too tired or too weary to wake up every day and fight this fight for you." Read more here