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The third annual Building Green Justice Forum will be held on October 13th on the Huston-Tillotson University campus in the Dickey-Lawless Auditorium. This year’s theme is “Race, Health, and the Environment.” The event is free and open to all.  More information and the RSVP located here:

Huston-Tillotson University will host the third annual Building Green Justice Forum, this year focusing on “Race, Health, and the Environment” from scientific, sociological, political, and historical perspectives.

Keynote speakers include Mario Sims, social epidemiologist with the Jackson Heart Study and a professor in the University of Mississippi’s Department of Medicine, addressing the Jackson study’s research on the greater prevalence of cardiovascular disease among African Americans and the reasons for the disparity.

Also delivering a keynote address will be Paula Flores-Gregg from the Environmental Protection Agency and the Rev. Eugene Keahey, pastor of the Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church, who will discuss the fight for environmental justice in Sandbranch, a community southeast of Dallas that has been battling for water rights for over 30 years.

A panel will report on public health interventions and environmental hazard investigations from Argentina to Austin. Moderated by Dominique Vining of HT, the panel will include Shannon Jones, Director of Travis County Health and Human Services and Emily Spangenberg from the UT Department of Sociology.

Workshops will feature activists, community members, students, and researchers working on issues of environmental justice and health.

The forum is sponsored by Green is the New Black, The Dumpster Project, and the Third Coast Activist Resource Center. For more information, contact Karen Magid, or Amanda Masino,

Schedule of Events

8:30-9:00 a.m. – Coffee and Breakfast Snacks

9:00-9:15 a.m. – Welcome to the Forum

9:20-10:35 a.m. – Dr. Mario Sims, University of Mississippi Medical Center, “Psychosocial Factors and Cardiovascular Disease Disparity in the Jackson Heart Study”

10:40-11:55 a.m. – Paula Flores-Gregg, Environmental Protection Agency Region 6, and Pastor Eugene Keahey, Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church, “Sandbranch, Texas – A former Freedman’s Town Fighting for a Water Bill”

11:50-1:00 p.m. – Lunch

1:00-2:30 p.m. – Discussion Panel: “Navigating Race and Environment in Health Intervention Work,”

  • Shannon Jones, Travis County Health and Human Services;
  • Emily Spangenberg, University of Texas at Austin;
  • Moderated by Dominique Vining, Huston-Tillotson University.

2:35-3:45 p.m. – Workshops and Breakout Sessions with:

  • Dave Cortez of Sierra Club Beyond Coal,
  • Heather Houser and the Environmental Humanities Working Group,
  • J.P. Maestre from the Home Microbiome Asthma Study,
  • Dr. William Lawson of the HT/UT Health Disparities Team

3:45-4:00 p.m. – Closing Session and Call to Action

Event Logistics

Free parking is available in the Chalmers Ave. HT parking lot indicated on the map, and there is free street parking around campus. The Chalmers entrance to campus is directly across from the parking lot and we will have a few signs pointing the way to Dickey-Lawless, where all sessions will take place. There is no parking available on campus unless you have arranged for it prior to the event with the organizers.

 Sponsorships available – please contact