Lois GibbsLois Gibbs will present the keynote address on March 12 as part of Women’s History Month celebrations on campus.

Exhibit, Presentation, and Symposium Celebrate Women’s History

The Women’s Studies Interdisciplinary Unit is proud to present Lois Gibbs, named by the National Women’s History Project as one of its 2009 honorees, on Thursday, March 12, at 12:15 p.m. in Bulger Communication Center North.

Gibbs will address the campus on her work as a community activist advocating for environmentally safe neighborhoods. Her presentation is one of several events that will take place on campus as part of Women’s History Month in March.

A catered reception will open the first event, the Buffalo State College Women’s Art Exhibit, in the E. H. Butler Library lobby on Wednesday, March 4, at 3:00 p.m. The exhibit, titled Women, the Arts, and the Environment, will feature art in all media and works of scholarship that have been created or written by Buffalo State College female students, faculty, alumnae, and staff. In keeping with this year’s theme—Women Taking the Lead to Save Our Planet—many of the displays will be related to environmental issues.

The Women’s Studies Research Symposium will take place on Thursday March 5, from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. in E. H. Butler Library 210. The event will feature a number of presentations, posters, and roundtables on topics presented by faculty, students, and staff, including the Queen City Roller Girls, aging, and the feminization of William Carlos Williams.

Lois Gibbs will deliver the keynote on March 12. Gibbs’s work began in Niagara Falls, New York, in 1978, when she discovered that her child’s elementary school was built on top of a toxic chemical dump that later became known as Love Canal. She became a community organizer and, in 1981, she founded the Center for Health, Environment and Justice (CHEJ). According to its Web site, CHEJ works with communities at risk to empower people to protect their neighborhoods and families from chemical threats.

“We are delighted to present Lois Gibbs to help us emphasize the important role women have played in the environmental movement,” said Jennifer Ryan, assistant professor of English and coordinator of the Women’s Studies Interdisciplinary Unit. Gibbs will also meet with classes.

The Women’s Studies Interdisciplinary Unit Committee is grateful to the Equity and Campus Diversity Office, the University College Dean’s Office, the Graduate School Dean’s Office, the Faculty-Student Association, and the Natural and Social Sciences Dean’s Office for sponsoring this year’s events.