Slesinger Lecture

The Department of Community & Environmental Sociology presents the 2021 Slesinger Lecture:

From the Inside Out: The Fight for Environmental Justice within Government Agencies

delivered by

Professor Jill Harrison

Associate Professor of Sociology
University of Colorado-Boulder

Friday, October 15th at 1:30

Memorial Union or via Zoom (Zoom link HERE)

The Slesinger Lecture honors Professor Doris Slesinger’s legacy of research in health and social justice.

What follows are details about the Slesinger Lecture, comprising a brief biography of Professor Slesinger; a concise description of the Lecture’s development and purpose; and a listing of previous lectures, featuring embedded streaming videos of each.

For further information about the Slesinger Lecture, please email us.
To support future Slesinger Lectures, please contribute online.


Professor Doris P. Slesinger (1928-2006)
Professor Slesinger earned her PhD in sociology (with an emphasis on demography and health) from UW-Madison in 1973. She joined the Department of Rural Sociology in 1974, and was promoted to full professor ten years later. In 1987, the Department chose her as its chair — a position no other woman had filled for a Rural Sociology department in the United States. She retired in 1998 and remained engaged in university affairs. Her research and outreach activities concerned the health and well-being of minorities including African Americans and Native Americans, women, migrant farm workers, and the rural poor.

The Slesinger Lecture
In 2007, the Department of Rural Sociology established the Doris P. Slesinger Fund, using the $10,000 bequest that Professor Slesinger left to the Department. The departments of Community & Environmental Sociology (the renamed Department of Rural Sociology), in collaboration with the Department of Family Medicine, subsequently decided to use the Fund to support the Slesinger Lecture. This annual event honors Professor Slesinger’s life and life’s work, and stimulates campus-wide discussion of the principles of community engagement that are enshrined in the Wisconsin Idea.

Previous Slesinger Lectures
2016: Dr. Celeste Watkins-Hayes, “Remaking A Life, Reversing An Epidemic: HIV/AIDS & The Politics Of Transformation”
2015: Dr. Seth Holmes, “Fresh Fruit, Broken Bodies: Indigenous Mexican Farmworkers in the United States”
2014: Dr. H. Jack Geiger, “Health Justice & Social Justice: Can We Lurch Toward Equity?”
2012: Professor Linda Silka, “Evaluating Community-Engaged Research”
2011: Professor Steve Wing, “Public Health Research & Environmental Justice”

2016: “Remaking A Life, Reversing An Epidemic: HIV/AIDS & The Politics Of Transformation”

Celeste Watkins-Hayes
Associate Professor (Sociology & African American Studies)
Northwestern University

2015: “Fresh Fruit, Broken Bodies: Indigenous Mexican Farmworkers in the United States”

Seth Holmes
Associate Professor (Medical Anthropology & Public Health)
University of California-Berkeley

539w2014: “Health Justice & Social Justice: Can We Lurch Toward Equity?”

H. Jack Geiger
Arthur C. Logan Professor Emeritus of Community Medicine
City University of New York, School of Medicine
Co-founder and Past President, Physicians for Human Rights
Co-founder and Past President, Physicians for Social Responsibility

silka2012: “Evaluating Community-Engaged Research”

Linda Silka
School of Economics
Director, Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center
University of Maine

2011: “Community-Based Public Health Research and Environmental Justice”

Steve Wing
Associate Professor
Department of Epidemiology
Gillings School of Global Public Health
University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill

Thanks to current and previous co-sponsors and supporters of the Slesinger Lecture:
Collaborative Center for Health Equity
Department of Anthropology
Department of Family Medicine
Department of Sociology
Global Health Institute
Havens Center for the Study of Social Justice
Human Rights Program
Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies
University Lectures Committee