US Human Rights Network Blog

US Human Rights Network Blog



Keynote Speakers - Advancing Human Rights 20017

Oct 17, 2017

US Human Rights Network is excited to announce three dynamic speakers delivering Keynote Addresses during the7th Biennial National Convening: Advancing Human Rights 2017. All three have a unique perspective as human rights defenders through academia, grassroots activism and artistic expression. Read more about their accomplishments and prepare for impactful presentations that will inspire and motivate anyone into action.

abdullahi_ahmed_an-naim_0Dr. Abdullahi Ahmed An-Na‘im is the Charles Howard Candler Professor of Law at Emory Law, associated professor in the Emory College of Arts and Sciences, and senior fellow of the Center for the Study of Law and Religion of Emory University. An internationally recognized scholar of Islam and human rights and human rights in cross-cultural perspectives, Professor An-Na'im teaches courses in international law, comparative law, human rights, and Islamic law. His research interests include constitutionalism in Islamic and African countries, secularism, and Islam and politics. 

His research interests also include constitutionalism in Islamic and African countries, and Islam and politics. Before his current continuing project on “The Future of Sharia,” he directed three major research projects which focus on advocacy strategies for reform through internal cultural transformation.  Click here to learn more about Dr. An-Na’im’s career and role in human rights work.


adrienne_maree_brown_0Adrienne Maree Brown is the co-editor of Octavia’s Brood: Science Fiction from Social Justice Movements and a writer, facilitator, pleasure activist, coach, healer and doula living in Detroit.
She attended the Clarion Sci Fi Writers Workshop and the Hedgebrook Writers Residency in 2015, and Voices of Our Nation in 2014 as part of the inaugural Speculative Fiction Workshop. She was a 2013 Kresge Literary Arts Fellow and a 2013 and 2015 Knights Arts Challenge winner, writing and generating science fiction in and about Detroit. She is currently the Ursula Le Guin Feminist Sci Fi Fellow, and a Sundance/Time Warner 2016 Artist Grant Recipient.
She facilitates the internal healing and visionary development of organizations throughout the movement (most recently Building Equity and Alignment for Impact Initiative, Illinois Caucus for Adolescent Health, Chorus Foundation, Correctional Association of NY, Young Women United, Positive Women’s Network, Black Mesa Water Coalition, INCITE!, the Young Women’s Empowerment Project in Chicago, New Orleans Parents Organizing Network, and Detroit Summer).
In the past few years she has been a co-facilitator for the Detroit Food Justice Task Force, facilitator for Detroit Future, and the Detroit Digital Justice Coalition. She has been a part of the faculty for the Center for Whole Communities. Click here to learn more about Ms. Brown’s work as a human rights defender.

mapb-collette-flanagan_0Collette Flanagan founded Mothers Against Police Brutality (MAPB) after her son, Clinton Allen, was shot to death by a Dallas police officer in March 2013. Clinton was unarmed - he was shot once in the arm, five times in the chest, and once in the back. Mrs. Flanagan’s experiences in the aftermath of this official homicide – the indifference of Dallas City Hall, the lack of any assistance to the surviving family, the vilification of her son in the media, and finally the impunity enjoyed by the killer – turned her grief into anger and then into action.
The purposes of MAPB are to stop the killing of unarmed and mentally ill persons by law enforcement agencies; to change deadly force policies and practices nationally; to support families who have lost loved ones to police violence; and to help restore trust between the police and the communities they are sworn to serve and protect. A former IBM executive, Collette Flanagan has, in a very short time, built MAPB into an inter-generational, multi-ethnic, multicultural organization with both a local and national presence. Learn more about Mrs. Flanagan’s advocacy by reading her full biography.