The Power of Knowing Your Purpose

Brittany Packnett

Monday, 28 Jan 2019 at 7:00 pm – Great Hall, Memorial Union

Brittany Packnett is a leader at the intersection of culture and justice. A former teacher, non-profit executive director, and Fellow at Harvard's Institute of Politics, she has been named one of TIME Magazine’s 12 New Faces of Black Leadership and honored at the 2018 BET Awards as "one of the fiercest activists of our time." Packnett serves as Teach For America’s Vice President of National Community Alliances, where she leads partnerships and civil rights work with communities of color. She is a co-founder of Campaign Zero, a policy platform to end police violence; a contributor to the Crooked Media network’s weekly news roundup on Pod Save The People, and a Video Columnist for Mic News. She also served as an appointed member of the Ferguson Commission and President Obama's Task Force on 21st Century Policing. The 2019 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Legacy Series Keynote
Known as @MsPackyetti on social media, Brittany Packnett has become a sought-after voice in the work of social change and empowerment.

From New Zealand to London, across the United States, and at the White House, she has worked to impart lessons of empowerment, movement building, effective social impact, liberatory leadership, and empowerment for women and girls-especially those of color. Her popular TEDx talk, “It’s about time to value Women of Color in Leadership” exemplifies the passionate calls to action and personal storytelling she shares with audiences.

She has been named to Marie Claire's New Guard, LinkedIn’s Next Wave, received the Peter Jennings Award for Civic Leadership and shares the number 3 spot on Politico’s 2016 50 Most Influential list.

Brittany Packnett is an alum of Washington University in St. Louis, American University in Washington, and is a Pahara-Aspen Institute Education fellow. She is a proud Advisory Board Member of Rise To Run, an organization committed to recruiting grassroots, diverse, progressive women to run for office, and Erase The Hate, NBCUniversal's Emmy-Winning initiative to rid the world of discrimination.

Photo by Reginald Cunningham of Pure Black Photography

Other events featured in the 2019 Martin Luther King Jr. Legacy Series include:

Let Freedom Ring - Carillon Concert
Wednesday, January 16, 11:50 am, Central Campus
A carillon concert in honor of Dr. King. Tin-Shi Tam, carillonneur.

Community Birthday Celebration
Monday, January 21, 6:00pm, Ames Middle School, 3915 Mortensen Road, Ames
Celebrate with song, story and birthday cake. An Ames tradition! After sharing birthday cake, the program begins at 6:30.

Martin Luther King Jr. Legacy Convocation
Thursday, January 24, 7:00 pm, Sun Room, Memorial Union
Join a discussion with keynote speaker Ron Stallworth, whose extraordinary story of being a black detective who infiltrates the Ku Klux Klan is the subject of Spike Lee’s recent movie BlacKkKlansman.

Cosponsored By:
  • African and African American Studies
  • Ames Public Library Friends Foundation
  • Carrie Chapman Catt Center for Women and Politics
  • College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
  • College of Design
  • College of Engineering
  • College of Human Sciences
  • College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
  • College of Veterinary Medicine
  • History
  • Ivy College of Business
  • Margaret Sloss Center for Women and Gender Equity
  • Multicultural Student Affairs
  • Patricia Miller Lecture Fund
  • Political Science
  • University Library
  • Committee on Lectures (funded by Student Government)

Stay for the entire event, including the brief question-and-answer session that follows the formal presentation. Most events run 75 minutes.

Sign-ins are after the event concludes. For lectures in the Memorial Union, go to the information desk in the Main Lounge. In other academic buildings, look for signage outside the auditorium.

Lecture Etiquette

  • Stay for the entire lecture and the brief audience Q&A. If a student needs to leave early, he or she should sit near the back and exit discreetly.
  • Do not bring food or uncovered drinks into the lecture.
  • Check with Lectures staff before taking photographs or recording any portion of the event. There are often restrictions. Cell phones, tablets and laptops may be used to take notes or for class assignments.
  • Keep questions or comments brief and concise to allow as many as possible.