LAWRENCE — The Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics at the University of Kansas has announced that it will livestream the second installment of its series “A Conversation on Race” at 7 p.m. Oct. 21 on the institute’s YouTube channel. The event will feature Puerto Rico Sen. Carmelo Ríos-Santiago, Washington State Rep. Sharon Tomiko Santos and former Kansas legislator Thomas Sloan, and it will be moderated by Barbara Ballard, senior associate director of the institute.
“The problem of racism in this country is multifaceted and complex,” said Bill Lacy, director of the Dole Institute. “As we move forward in this series, we want to address additional communities and how racism affects them. For the second installment of ‘A Conversation on Race,’ we will discuss Asian-Pacific and Hispanic concerns. We look forward to another insightful, respectful and important discussion with a stellar panel of guests.”
Ríos-Santiago is the current majority leader of the Puerto Rico State Senate. In 2004, he was elected as one of the youngest senators of his class, representing the Bayamón District of Puerto Rico, and he chaired the Municipal and Financial Affairs Committee. He was elected in 2018 as president of the National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators, a nonprofit organization representing over 400 elected Hispanic state legislators throughout the United States, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. During his tenure, he was also part of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials.
Santos was elected to the Washington State House of Representatives in 1998. She chairs the House Education Committee and serves on the House Capital Budget Committee and Consumer Protection & Business Committee. She has received numerous awards for her legislative and community work, including the Kip Tokuda Community Leadership Award from the Asian Pacific Islander Community Leadership Foundation and the Leadership and Vision Award from Junior Achievement of Washington.
Sloan served in the Kansas House of Representatives from 1995 to 2019. He chaired the Water & Environment and the Government, Technology & Security committees. His primary policy areas are high-quality water access, renewable energy, telemedicine, distance education and economic opportunities, to name a few. He has received the Legislative Environmental Stewardship Award from the Kansas Wildlife Federation, the Legislative Leadership Award from the Kansas Commission on Disability Concerns and Outstanding Legislator from the Kansas Rural Water Association, among others.
This special program will be livestreamed to the institute’s YouTube channel and to its website, www.doleinstitute.org. Due to continuing concerns regarding the novel coronavirus pandemic, the program will only be available online. Follow the Dole Institute on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter for updates regarding this and future programming.
The Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics is dedicated to promoting political and civic participation as well as civil discourse in a bipartisan, philosophically balanced manner. It is located in KU's West District and houses the Dole Archive and Special Collections. Through its robust public programming, congressional archive and museum, the Dole Institute strives to celebrate public service and the legacies of former U.S. Senators Bob Dole and Elizabeth Dole.