Featuring Judy Shepard, NASPA President Kevin Kruger, Rhode Island College President Frank Sánchez, and Rankin & Associates Consulting Principal and CEO Sue Rankin
Presented by Rhode Island College, NASPA-Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education, and the Matthew Shepard Foundation
In October 1998, Judy and Dennis Shepard lost their 21-year-old son Matthew, then a student at the University of Wyoming, to a murder motivated by anti-gay hate. Since then, through the Matthew Shepard Foundation and work with legislators, colleges and universities, and communities, Judy and Dennis have carried on Matthew’s legacy, advancing dignity and justice for queer and trans communities.
Register for this free virtual panel presentation about how colleges and universities have changed during the past 20 years and how they must continue the work of creating safe and affirming campus climates. The panel features:
This presentation will be available as a livestream only - there will not be a recording made available after the session is over.
To read more about the event, please visit Rhode Island College's website.
Additionally, if you are interested in learning more about Matthew Shepard's life and legacy, you can watch Matt Shepard is a Friend of Mine, which is currently streaming on Hulu.
This presentation will be live captioned. To access the captions during the presentation, please follow the instructions below:
In 1998, Judy Shepard lost her son Matthew to a murder motivated by anti-gay hate which both shocked and captivated the nation.
Turning tragedy into a crusade for justice, she established the Matthew Shepard Foundation to carry on her son’s legacy and authored the best-seller, The Meaning of Matthew. Later she spearheaded a campaign for The Matthew Shepard Act which expanded the federal hate-crime law to include crimes based on gender and sexual orientation.
Judy Shepard offers an intimate look at how her life and the fight for equal rights changed when her son was killed. She leaves an indelible imprint with words, compassion and raw honesty as she urges audiences to make their schools and communities safer for everyone.
Kevin Kruger draws on more than 35 years of experience in higher education. Since 2012, he has served as president and CEO for NASPA – Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education. Prior to his role as president, Dr. Kruger worked for 18 years as the associate executive director and served as the chief operating officer (COO) and chief financial officer (CFO) for NASPA. He has held a range of student affairs positions at Southern Methodist University and the University of Maryland. As NASPA president, Dr. Kruger represents student affairs at a variety of national forums and is a frequent contributor to higher education news stories on the college student experience. Dr. Kruger has published and presented nationally on trends in higher education, student success, degree-completion strategies for low-income/first generation students, technology, and change management and leadership in higher education. He is the proud father of two children, one a college freshman and the other a sophomore in high school.
Dr. Susan Rankin is a Senior Research Associate in the Center for the Study of Higher Education and Associate Professor of Education in the College Student Affairs Program at The Pennsylvania State University. Dr. Rankin earned her B.S. from Montclair State University in 1978, a M.S. in Exercise Physiology from The Pennsylvania State University (1981), and a Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration in 1994, also from Penn State. Before moving into her current position, Dr. Rankin served for 17 years as the Head Coach for Women’s Softball and Lecturer in Kinesiology at Penn State. She has presented and published widely on the impact of sexism, racism and heterosexism in the academy and in intercollegiate athletics. Dr. Rankin’s current research focuses on the assessment of institutional climate and providing program planners and policy makers with recommended strategies to improve the campus climate for under-served communities.
Dr. Rankin has collaborated with over 70 institutions/organizations in implementing assessments and developing strategic plans regarding social justice issues. In her advocacy work, Dr. Rankin is a founding member of the Consortium of Higher Education LGBT Resource Professionals, a network of professionals doing advocacy work for LGBT people on college campuses and the Statewide Pennsylvania Rights Coalition, a network of individuals and organizations across the Commonwealth committed to securing and defending full civil rights for LGBT individuals.
Dr. Rankin is the recipient of the ACPA 2008 Voice of Inclusion Medallion. The award recognizes individuals who embody the student affairs values of social justice.
Dr. Rankin is also one of the award recipients of the James R. Douglass and Gerald B. Roemer awards from the Department of Justice-2018 for her work with the United States Transgender Project team.
Frank D. Sánchez became the tenth president of Rhode Island College – the state’s first public college – in July 2016. Dr. Sánchez oversees the college with an annual operating budget that exceeds $190 million and supports approximately 12,000 students on campus and across the state.
A native of Cheyenne, Wyoming, Dr. Sánchez holds a Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration with a concentration in Learning, Cognition and Instruction from Indiana University-Bloomington, and an M.S. in Student Affairs and Higher Education from Colorado State University. He also holds a B.S. in Psychology with minors in Communications and Ethnic Studies from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
For over two and a half decades, Dr. Sánchez has advanced higher education policy, programs and services to improve college completion and success. He has consulted, presented and spoken at numerous national forums focusing on student success. He previously served as the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs at The City University of New York, the nation’s largest urban public university serving over 500,000 students.