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NIU Law to host Race and the Law Conversation on Reparations on Aug. 31

August 23, 2021

Join the NIU College of Law for the next Race and the Law Conversation, Examining the Case for Reparations on Tuesday, August 31 at 6 p.m. with U.S. Congresswoman Shelia Jackson Lee. NIU Law Dean Cassandra L. Hill will moderate.

Tuesday, August 31, 2021
6 – 7 p.m. CST
Register Now for this virtual Event via Zoom

About this Event
The NIU College of Law Race and the Law Conversations series provide a platform with expert panelists who will engage in much needed conversations on a wide range of racial and social justice issues including, but limited to, racial inequality, police brutality, and mass incarceration. Our inaugural Conversation on police accountability and reform in August 2020 was presented by Professor Sharon Fairley, ACLU Policing Policy Advisor Paige Fernandez, and NIU Law Professor Paul Cain moderated the discussion. Our second Conversation, “Combating Structural Racism in U.S. Elections” in October 2020 was led by Stanford Law Professor Pamela S. Karlan, one of the nation’s leading experts on voting rights and moderated by NIU Law Professor Jeffrey Omari. Our third conversation on Environmental Justice was held in March 2021 and led by University of Maryland Law Professor Seema Kakade and Northwestern Law Professor Nancy Loeb.


Sheila Jackson Lee
United States Congresswoman
Eighteenth District of Texas

Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee is an influential and forceful voice in Washington.  She is serving her eleventh term as a member of the United States House of Representatives. She represents the 18th Congressional District of Texas, centered in Houston, which is the energy capital of the world.  Considered by many as the “Voice of Reason”, she is dedicated to upholding the Constitutional rights of all people.

She was named by ‘Congressional Quarterly’ as one of the 50 most effective Members of Congress and the ‘U.S. News and World Report’ named her as one of the 10 most influential legislators in the U.S. House of Representatives.  She is a founder, member, and co-chair of the Congressional Children’s Caucus and authored and introduced H.R. 83, the Bullying Prevention and Intervention Act of 2013.  She is also chair of the Congressional Black Caucus Energy Braintrust, co-chair of the Justice Reform Task Force, a leadership appointed member of the international Helsinki Commission.   She serves as Senior Whip for the Democratic Caucus, past Chairperson of the Texas Congressional Democratic Delegation for the 113th Congress, and current Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation Board.

Congresswoman Jackson Lee introduced H.R. 40 in January 2019.  This bill establishes the Commission to Study and Develop Reparation Proposals for African-Americans. The commission shall examine slavery and discrimination in the colonies and the United States from 1619 to the present and recommend appropriate remedies. Among other requirements, the commission shall identify (1) the role of the federal and state governments in supporting the institution of slavery, (2) forms of discrimination in the public and private sectors against freed slaves and their descendants, and (3) lingering negative effects of slavery on living African-Americans and society.

Congresswoman Jackson Lee earned a B.A. in Political Science from Yale University with honors in the first graduating class including females, followed by a J.D. from the University of Virginia Law School.