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C+V Community Talk in Partnership with Heritage Months: LGBTQIA+ Community and the Intersectionality of our Histories

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In tandem with National Coming Out Day (10/11), Spirit Day (10/20) and Ally Weeks, the month of October holds significant space and recognition for the LGBTQIA+ community. Blossoming from its initial goals of commemoration and calls to action, LGBTQIA+ History Month has now taken on the approach to highlight and celebrate exemplary role models from the community.  

As we move forward, it is critical to evolve and adapt. This mindset and trajectory leads us to take into consideration the unique intersectionality of our histories, both within larger contexts of the history of LGBTQIA+ in the United States, as well as our own personal histories. Our individual selves and how we operate within the community aids to the constant scripting and re-scripting of the narratives and lives for those in the LGBTQIA+ community, and beyond.  

Join us in conversation during the 10/14 C+V panel event to listen how the learning, unlearning and relearning of our shared and unique histories provides the potential for healing and wholeness.  

Learn more about our panelists below!


Featuring DU Community Panelists:

Kristin Deal headshot

Kristin Deal
Director, Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion; Adjunct Faculty, University of Denver

Dong Dinh headshot

Dong Dinh
Program Coordinator, Access and Transitions, University of Denver

Dong Dinh (He/him) serves as the Program Coordinator for the Access and Transitions team in the Student Affairs and Inclusive Excellence division. He graduated from DU in 2019 with a master's in Higher Education and is currently pursuing an Ed.D degree. He identifies as a queer Vietnamese American and concentrates his research in supporting historically underrepresented students with a specialty focus of Asian American populations. He also Co-Chairs the Queer University Employees group.

Donavon Ruiz headshot

Rika Ruiz
President, Queer Student Alliance, University of Denver

Donavon is a third-year at the University of Denver studying Sociology and Computer Science. They are the current President of Queer Student Alliance and they hope to continue supporting and advocating for marginalized communities after college. In their free time, they like to sing and play piano.

Catherine Smith headshot

Catherine Smith
Professor, Chauncey G. Wilson Memorial Research Chair, Sturm College of Law, University of Denver
Rocky Mountain Collective on Race, Place & Law

Catherine Smith joined the faculty at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law in 2004. After graduating from the University of South Carolina School of Law, Professor Smith clerked for the late Chief Judge Henry A. Politz of the U. S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and for U.S. Magistrate Judge William M. Catoe Jr. She then served as a legal fellow at the Southern Poverty Law Center. Before joining the faculty at the University of Denver, Professor Smith was an assistant professor at the Thurgood Marshall School of Law from 2000 to 2004.

Professor Smith teaches torts, employment discrimination, family law, and sexuality, gender and the law. Her research interests include civil rights law and critical race theory. Her articles have been published in a number of journals, including Wisconsin Law Review, Washington University Law Review, U.C. Davis Law Review and the Ohio State Law Journal. In addition, Smith co-authored an amicus brief on the constitutional rights of children that was cited in Obergefell v. Hodges, the landmark United States Supreme Court same-sex marriage decision.