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UF Law Race Center Welcomes Prominent Legal Theorist for Spring Lecture

GAINESVILLE, Fla – In 2009, African-American Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. was arrested by a white police officer while attempting to gain entry into his own home. The incident forced the nation to turn its attention to the case and consider issues of race and class in the United States. Harvard Law Professor Charles Ogletree served as Gates’ attorney in the case and the charges were later dropped.

Ogletree’s latest book, “The Presumption of Guilt: The Arrest of Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and Race, Class and Crime in America,” details the Gates incident and uses it as a springboard to look at broader issues of race in America.

Ogletree will give the UF Center for the Study of Race and Race Relations’ (CSRRR) 2011 Spring Lecture. His talk is titled, “Are We in A Post-Racial Society? Race in America Today.” It will be held Thursday, March 24, 2011, at noon at the University of Florida Levin College of Law, in Holland Hall, Room 180.

Not only has Ogletree made a name for himself as a prominent legal theorist, criminal defense attorney and an influential champion of civil rights, he has written and lectured widely on issues of racial profiling, capital punishment, reparations and juvenile justice.

During the confirmation hearings for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, Ogletree was a member of Professor Anita Hill’s legal team. Ogletree has served as moderator on nationally-televised forums and made appearances as a guest commentator on multiple television shows including “Nightline,” “The Today Show,” “Larry King Live,” “Meet the Press” and the joint 2008 presidential election night coverage between “The Daily Show” and “The Colbert Report.” He is a mentor to President Barack Obama, who was a student of Ogletree’s at Harvard Law School.

Ogletree is the Jesse Climenko professor of law and the director of the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice at Harvard.

The University of Florida Levin College of Law Center for the Study of Race and Race Relations is committed to fostering communities of dialogue on race. The center creates and supports programs designed to enhance race-related curriculum development for faculty, staff and students in collegiate and professional schools. Of the five U.S. law schools with race centers, the CSRRR is uniquely focused on curriculum development.

For additional information:
Matt Walker, UF Law Communications
352-273-0650 or

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Published: March 14th, 2011

Category: News

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