The Byron & Christine Johnson Lecture/Discussion Series

2013 Theme:  A Black Woman Speaks

Saturday, January 26, 2013, 10:00 A.M.-12:00 P.M.

Film:  “Beah:  A Black Woman Speaks”

Facilitator:  Jacquelyn Benton

LisaGay Hamilton’s documentary, “Beah:  A Black Woman Speaks,” details the last year of longtime Hollywood actress Beah Richards through flashbacks that reflect her life and career.  Richards’ writings, films, and political activism are highlighted, and luminaries like Paul Robeson, W.E.B. Du Bois, and Louise Thompson Patterson appear in the film. Actors Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee offer additional commentary.

Saturday, February 23, 2013, 10:00 A.M.-12:00 P.M.

Film:  “Beah:  A Black Woman Speaks”

Facilitator:  Jacquelyn Benton

This session resumes the viewing of “Beah:  A Black Woman Speaks,” through the film’s moving conclusion.  As Richards’ last days are documented, we learn of her unique approach to teaching acting, re-live her role as Baby Suggs in the film Beloved, and see the bittersweet moments that close out her life.

Saturday, March 23, 2013, 10:00 A.M.-12:00 P.M.

Lecture:  “Insisting on the Center”

Presenter:  Dominique Johnson Ashaheed

Though Ashaheed feels that male writers are given a wider spotlight than their female counterparts, her own powerful voice cannot be refused the spotlight.  A member of Denver’s SLAM Nuba in 2011, she and her team captured the national championship that year, and she singularly won the 2012 title at the Women of the World Poetry Slam with her signature poem “Emmett Till.”

Saturday, April 27, 2013, 10:00 A.M.-12:00 P.M.

Lecture:  “In Secret Service of the Sacred Heart:  The Life of Julia Greeley”

Presenters:  Linda M. Chase & Richard Holmes

A former slave, Julia Greeley became Denver’s Angel of Charity and an apostle of the Sacred Heart.  As she roamed the streets of Denver looking for anything she could give to those in need, her compelling  “voice” manifested in her service to others.  She is now being celebrated in a book on her life and a school in her honor.

Saturday, May 11, 2013, 10:00 A.M.-2:00 P.M.

Lecture:  “Self-preservation:  Art is the Sustenance”

Presenter:  Li Hardison

Hardison feels that air, water, food, shelter, AND art are the necessities of life.  A gifted sculptor, she is following in the footsteps of her acclaimed aunt, Inge Hardison, and feels that African American creativity must be preserved, along with the “green beans and collard greens.”  As she says, “Our intimacy with the divine comes through our creativity. Without it we lose our way, and we lose ourselves.”  *A catered luncheon will follow Hardison’s presentation, the cost of which is  $15.00.

*All presentations are held at Park Hill United Methodist Church, located at

5209 Montview Blvd, Denver 80207.  They are free and open to the public.