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Artist-Activist Bree Newsome To Deliver Keynote Address At WSU Event


Students returned to Wichita State University for the fall semester this week. The university begins the new term with two weeks of special programs and events.

As KMUW’s Deborah Shaar reports, one campus event features a speaker known for being an agent of change.

The main event of WSU’s “Welcomefest” will be Tuesday evening, when artist and activist Bree Newsome delivers a keynote speech titled "Tearing Hate from the Sky."

Newsome was a central figure in the summer of 2015’s heated debate over the use of Confederate flags across the nation. She took a stand in South Carolina and was arrested.

Newsome decided that the Confederate flag outside of the South Carolina State Capitol needed to come down, so she scaled the 30-foot flagpole and unhooked the flag.

Less than two weeks later, state officials permanently removed the flag from the Statehouse grounds and sent it to a museum.

Newsome, a graduate of New York University Tisch School of the Arts, says she uses her talents as an artist, musician and filmmaker in pursuit of social and economic justice.

Her program will begin at 6:45 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 30, in the Rhatigan Student Center Beggs Ballroom. Attendees must have a ticket. Visit the WSU Office of Diversity and Inclusion for more information and to purchase tickets.


Follow Deborah Shaar on Twitter @deborahshaar.

To contact KMUW News or to send in a news tip, reach us at news@kmuw.org.


Deborah joined the news team at KMUW in September 2014 as a news reporter. She spent more than a dozen years working in news at both public and commercial radio and television stations in Ohio, West Virginia and Detroit, Michigan. Before relocating to Wichita in 2013, Deborah taught news and broadcasting classes at Tarrant County College in the Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas area.