Spartan Speaker Series

Since 2016, the Spartan Speaker Series has brought distinguished authors, critics, scientists, activists, and artists to our campus to discuss critical issues in our society impacting students. The series strives to highlight a broad range of pertinent content and diverse voices. 

Fall 2021 Speakers 


Speaker Event Description

Nikole Hannah-Jones

Nikole Hannah-Jones

Wednesday, September 15th, 1:00 p.m. (click to register)


"The 1619 Project: Reframing U.S. History and the Impacts of Slavery"


Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and creator of The New York Times's 1619 Project

Gabby Rivera

Gabby Rivera

Tuesday, September 21st, 7:00 p.m. (click to register)


"A Holistic Approach to a Creative Life: Rest. Write. Repeat."


Writer, America Chavez Marvel comic book series and Juliet Takes a Breath

Simu Liu

Simu Liu

Wednesday, September 29th, 7:00 p.m. (click to register)


"Journey to Success: Reflections on Family, Career and Persistence"


Canadian actor, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings and Kim's Convenience

Leah Thomas

Leah Thomas

Wednesday, October 6th, 7:00p.m. (click to register)


Legacy Month Speaker- sponsored by The Associated Students Cesar E. Chavez Community Action Center


"Green Girl Leah - The Intersectional Environmentalist"


Environmentalist, founder of eco-lifestyle blog Green Girl Leah

Janet Mock

Janet Mock

Tuesday, November 9th, 6:00 p.m. (click to register)


"Searching for Voice, Purpose, and Place: How Sharing with Vulnerability, Humility, and Courage Can Be a Path to Self Discovery and Community Empowerment"


Author, Emmy-nominated writer, director, and executive producer of FX's POSE



Spring 2021 Speakers 

Baratunde Thurston headshot

Baratunde Thurston

Wednesday, February 10

How to Deconstruct Racism and Laugh at the Same Time

Alok Menon headshot

Alok Menon

Wednesday, February 24 

CCCAC 15 Anniversary Keynote: Alok Menon - Beyond the Binary

Thea Moynee headshot

Thea Monyee

Tuesday, March 2

Sustaining Joy in the Midst of Social Change: Bridging Mental Health & Activism

Simon Tam headshotSimon Tam

Wednesday, April 14

Slanted: How an Asian American Troublemaker Took on the Supreme Court

Past Spartan Speakers

Leslie Odom Jr. headshot

Leslie Odom Jr.

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Tony Award-Winning Actor & Musician and author of "Failing Up." 

Dr Mona Hanna-Attisha headshot

Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Physician, scientist, activist, and author of "What the Eyes Don’t See."

Sally Kohn headshot

Sally Kohn

Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Activist, commentator, and author of "The Opposite of Hate: A Field Guide to Repairing Our Humanity"

Ibtihaj Muhammad headshot

Ibtihaj Muhammad

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Activist, Athlete, 2016 Olympic Medalist & First Female Muslim-American Athlete to Medal at the Olympics 

Antoni Porwoski headshot

Antoni Porowski

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Food & Wine Connoisseur, Netflix's "Queer Eye" & Bestselling Author

Dwayne Betts headshot

Reginald Dwayne Betts

Wednesday, February 26, 2020 

Award-Winning Author, Poet, Lawyer & Outspoken Advocate for Criminal Justice Reform

Diane Guerrero headshot

Diane Guerrero

September 30, 2019

Actress, Orange is the New Black & Author "In the Country We Love: My Family Divided"

Nyle DiMarco Headshot

Nyle DiMarco

October 9, 2019

Deaf Activist | Winner of America's Next Top Model and Dancing with the Stars

Amanda Nguyen headshot

Amanda Nguyen

October 23, 2019

CEO & Founder of Rise and 2019 Nobel Peace Prize Nominee



Steven Paul Judd headshot

Steven Paul Judd

November 9, 2019

Visual Artist and Filmmaker


Single by 30 and Yappie with WongFu Productions

WongFu Productions

April 10, 2019

"Single by 30" & Yappie with WongFu Productions


Portrait of Bryan Terrell Clark

Bryan Terrell Clark

February 20, 2019

Finding Your Purpose: From Baltimore to Broadway’s “Hamilton” with Bryan Terrell Clark

Portrait of Tarana Burke

Tarana Burke

February 4, 2019

An Evening with 2017 TIME Person Of The Year "me too." Movement Founder Tarana Burke

Portrait of Shaun King

Shaun King

October 24, 2018

Legacy Month Speaker Shaun King


Portrait of Tommy Orange

Tommy Orange

November 6, 2018

An Evening with Tommy Orange

Portrait of political comic Hari Kondabolu

Hari Kondabolu

September 12, 2018

Spartan Speaker Series Presents Hari Kondabolu


Portrait of Ana Navarro, Republican strategist and political commentator.

Ana Navarro

September 17, 2018

"Politics and the Hispanic Vote" with Ana Navarro

Portrait of Frank Warren

Frank Warren

April 23, 2018

“The Most Trusted Stranger In America: Frank Warren’s PostSecret” with Frank Warren

Portrait of Winona LaDuke

Winona LaDuke

March 19, 2018

“Creating a Multicultural Democracy - Religion, Culture, and Identity in America” with Winona LaDuke

Portrait of Kamau Bell


 Kamau Bell

Portrait of Franchesca Ramsey


Franchesca Ramsey

Legacy Month Keynote Speaker: A Conversation with Franchesca Ramsey


Portrait of Dustin Lance Black

Dustin Lance Black

An Evening with Academy Award Winning Screenwriter Dustin Lance Black


Portrait of Lisa Ling

Lisa Ling

“Open Heart, Open Mind” with Lisa Ling


Portrait of Richard Cabral

Richard Cabral

An Evening with Richard Cabral: A Conversation and excerpts from his One Man Show


Portrait of Kevin Powell

Kevin Powell

"History Is A People's Memory: Celebrating the Past, Celebrating Us" with Kevin Powell


Portrait of Matika Wilbur

Matika Wilbur

"Changing the Way We See Native America" with Matika Wilbur


Portrait of Van Jones

Van Jones

"Election 2016 – Protest & Politics in the Age of Twitter” with Van Jones