Common Hour Speaker Benjamin Jealous Urges Individuals to Make an Impact


This video contains excerpts from Jealous’s talk.

In his introductory remarks, sociology professor Roy Partridge described former NCAAP leader Benjamin Jealous as a “vital thinker and inspirational orator who can help people of all ages define how they will change the world through their individual and collective efforts.” Jealous spoke at Bowdoin for the Feb. 21 Common Hour. His talk is part of a series of events at Bowdoin related to the life and legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Jealous stepped down from his post as CEO and president of the NAACP in December. The youngest president in the organization’s history, he has been a leader of successful state and local movements to ban the death penalty, outlaw racial profiling, defend voting rights, secure marriage equality and free wrongfully incarcerated people. A Rhodes Scholar, Jealous is a graduate of Columbia and Oxford universities. He has been named to the “40 under 40” lists of both Forbes and Time magazines, and labeled a Young Global Economic Leader by the World Economic Forum.

In his talk, Jealous spoke about his activism, as well as that of others, especially the work of a 16-year-old woman who helped eradicate the U.S. death penalty for juveniles. As he spoke, he recounted some of the wisdom he has picked up along the way.

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