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Najarian Lecture on Human Rights at Faneuil Hall

Endowed by the K.George and Dr. Carolann S. Najarian, the purpose of the Najarian Lecture on Human Rights at Faneuil Hall, offered in collaboration with academic institutions and human rights organizations, is to advance understanding of human rights issues and societal abuses worldwide and to increase awareness of the work of individuals and organization so that we are more actively engaged.  

The setting is in tribute to the New England women and men - intellectuals, politicians, diplomats, religious leaders and ordinary citizens - who in the beginning of the 1890's at Faneuil Hall, heard eyewitness accounts of the atrocities taking place against the Armenian minority of the Ottoman Empire during the First World War and spoke passionately about the urgent need for intervention. Philanthropists nationwide raised over one hundred million in aid. This was America's first human rights movement.

Topics & Speakers:

2018   Incarceration: Untangling the Web of Injustice

Cherise Fannon Burden, Chief Executive Officer, Pretrial Justice Institute; Marc A. Levin, Vice President of Criminal Justice, Texas Public Policy Foundation & Right on Crime; Middlesex Sheriff Peter J. Koutoujian, President, Massachusetts Sheriffs' Association;  Founding Member, Law Enforcement Leaders to Reduce Crime & Incarceration. Video

2016   Justice and Equality: Inspiring Activism

Harry Belafonte social activist and entertainer. Introduced by Roger Brown, President, Berklee College of Music. Video

2015   Call to Action: Then & Now

Peter Balakian, author, The Burning Tigris; Joyce Van Dyke's Friends of Armenia (commissioned for the lecture); Sarah Leah Whitson, Executive Director, Middle East & North Africa Division, Human Rights Watch Video

2014   Truth to Action: Media Freedom - Protecting Human Rights

Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh; Courtney Radsch, Advocacy Director, Committee to Protect Journalists; Ray Suarez, Al Jazeera America; Stephen Kurkjian, former Washington Bureau Chief and founding member, Investigative Spotlight Team, The Boston Globe; Thomas Mucha, Editor, GlobalPost  

2013  Slavery and Human Trafficking

Siddarth Kara, Director of the Program on Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University;  Cherie Jimenez, founder, EVA Center; Liam Lowney, Executive Director, Mass Office of Victim Assistance; Middlesex Sheriff Peter J. Koutoujian  

2012   Immigrant Experience: On the Opening of Armenian Heritage Park

Ambassador Edward P. Djerejian Founding Director, James A. Baker III, Rice University; author, Danger and Opportunity:  An Ambassador's Journey Through the Middle East  Video

2011   An Ordinary Man

Paul Rusesabagina, Founder/President, The Hotel Rwanda Foundation, author, An Ordinary Man

2010   Inaugural: Speak Truth to Power

Kerry Kennedy, Founder and President, Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights; author, Speak Truth to Power: Human Rights Defenders Who are Changing our World  Video 














2015 Call to Action, Leo Gozbekian photo







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