Earliest Visiting Social Activists

Inaugural Academic Year  2005-6   Connie Evans     
As founder of the Women’s Self-Employment Project, she created the largest microenterprise program in the
country assisting low-income urban women. Ms. Evans has also played an active role in global efforts to encourage investments that support human rights. During her stay, Ms. Evans consulted with University researchers and then convened town meetings with local African American women to learn how they spent, saved and managed their money. 
Her findings are summarized in the report: The Intersection of Gender, Race and Culture as Influencers on African American Women's Financial Fitness, Asset Accumulation, and Wealth Attainment.

Learn more about Ms. Evans and her current work as President and CEO of the Association for Enterprise Opportunity.
    2006-7    Anne Ladky 
Ms. Ladky is Executive Director of Women Employed, a non-profit that analyzes workplace issues, educates policy makers, and builds support for improved career opportunities, benefits and incomes for women. During her stay, she met with faculty experts in business, public policy, economics and labor relations to develop a persuasive business case showing how businesses can save money (e.g., in recruitment and retraining, customer satisfaction and repeat business) by providing low-wage workers with adequate wages, sick time and health insurance, and greater scheduling predictability.
Find out more about Ms. Ladky’s work as TFVSA, and how Women Employed is now utilizing the business case she created as part of her stay at CEW.
      2007-8      Linda Burnham   
Ms. Burnham founded the Women of Color Resource Center (WCRC) in 1990 to promote an agenda recognizing the interconnections between anti-racist, anti-sexist and anti-homophobic organizing on issues of peace and civil rights.  While on her VSA fellowship, she met UM faculty doing research on political participation and feminism, gender-conscious leadership training models, and social movement building. She also interviewed social justice leaders and reflected on her own organizing experiences for the resulting paper "The Absence of a Gender Justice Framework in Social Justice Organizing." Her paper offers social justice organizations recommendations for increasing their understanding of, and commitment to, women's human rights and gender justice.  

Learn more
 about the history of the Women of Color Resource Center and Ms. Burnham’s experience as a Twink Frey Visiting Social Activist.
2008-9       Mallika Dutt               
Ms. Dutt is the Executive Director of Breakthrough, an international human rights organization that uses education and popular culture to promote values of dignity, equality, and justice. It addresses women's rights, sexual and reproductive rights, immigrant rights, racial, ethnic and caste equality and religion and peace. She spent her time as a VSA fellow writing a paper about Breakthrough’s theory of social change and the ways in which it builds a culture of human rightsThis paper has been circulated to a wide variety of rights organizations in order to inform and inspire their efforts. 
Read more about Breakthrough's work and Ms. Dutt's TFVSA project.