• Edna Griffin

Edna Griffin and Rosa Parks held nation accountable By Judith Stanford Miller, M.Ed., M.A. (This article was first published on Student News Net, Sept. 22, 2017, ID #8945) Sept. 22, 2017 – Two African American women – Edna Griffin in Des Moines, Iowa at a lunch counter in 1948 and Rosa Parks on a city bus in Montgomery, Alabama in 1955 – stood up for their civil rights by quietly sitting at a lunch counter and on a bus respectively. In doing so, they held the nation accountable and influenced American history. One hundred and fifty-five years ago today, President Abraham Lincoln issued the preliminary Emancipation Proclamation. The final Emancipation Proclamation was issued a few months later on Jan. 1, 1863. The National Archives summarizes what President Lincoln proclaimed in the document. On Aug. 23, 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., through his famous ‘I Have a Dream’ speech, challenged the nation to live up to the promises made in the Declaration of Independence and the Emancipation Proclamation. Edna Griffin Often called the Rosa Parks of Iowa, Edna’s action for equality in 1948 occurred seven years before Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery, Alabama city […]


Douglas Brinkley, Ph.D. Dr. Douglas Brinkley will be our Keynote speaker.* He is a professor of history at Rice University, the CNN Presidential Historian, and a contributing editor at Vanity Fair. He earned his B.A. in History at The Ohio State University and his Ph.D. at Georgetown University. Considered America’s foremost U.S. Presidential historian his bestselling books in this genre include The Wilderness Warrior: Theodore Roosevelt and the Crusade for America, The Reagan Diaries and Rightful Heritage: Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Land of America. The Chicago Tribune has dubbed him “America’s new past master.” His book, Cronkite (2012) won the Ann M. Sperber Prize for Best Book in Journalism and was a Washington Post Notable Book of the Year. His 2007 book, The Great Deluge: Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans, the Mississippi Gulf Coast won the Robert F. Kennedy Book Award. He is a member of the Society of American Historians and the Council on Foreign Relations. He was a featured speaker at the 2013 Day of Courage: A National Movement honoring the 100th birthday of Rosa Parks, held at The Henry Ford in Dearborn, Michigan. He wrote an authorized biography on Rosa Parks called Rosa Parks: A Life. He […]

About the Symposium

The Student Symposium will be held on Friday, September 14, 2018 from 9:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. at the Iowa Theater in the Iowa Memorial Union at the University of Iowa in Iowa City, Iowa. It will also be streamed live on this website. Student News Net proudly announces its first annual Student Symposium. Dr. Douglas Brinkley is tentatively scheduled to be our Keynote Speaker. The Symposium’s topic is: Actions and Accomplishments of African American Women of the 1940s and 1950s. Its goal is to bring high school students together to research and share knowledge about the actions and accomplishments of African American women in the 1940s and 1950s. The Student Symposium will be streamed live and have an online presence. All high schools are invited to participate. Dr. Douglas Brinkley, award winning author and historian, will deliver the Keynote Address discussing his book, Rosa Parks: A Life (2000). Students will read Dr. Brinkley’s book before the April Symposium. Students and teachers are invited to submit presentations about the book and related topics including research on Edna Griffin, often called the Rosa Parks of Iowa; African American Rosie the Riveters during WWII; and NASA’s African American women mathematicians, known as […]