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University of Iowa News Release

Nov. 17, 2005

Local Non-profit Leader To Speak On 'Careers For Change' Dec. 1

Laura Dowd, president and founder of Local Foods Connection, a non-profit organization that assists low income people to access locally produced produce and meat products, will speak at 5 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 1 in Room 340, South Commons, Blank Honors Center on the UI campus. Her talk, "From Local Farms to Local Families: Fighting Hunger in Iowa City," will be followed by a question-and-answer session and is part of Careers for Change, a speaker series sponsored by the University of Iowa Center for Human Rights.

Although the program is designed for undergraduates to learn more about careers in social justice and human rights, the series is free and open to UI faculty, staff and the public.

Local Foods Connection was founded in 1999 to provide food assistance to families in need. It has grown from initially serving just two families in 2000 with donated vegetables from a community-supported agriculture program to 2004, when it provided 18 clients with vegetables, eggs and bread. In past years, it has provided donated chickens and turkeys to clients. The organization also coordinates food delivery and farm visits to introduce participating families to small family farming and sustainable agriculture, and provides opportunities for families to learn healthy cooking methods.

For more information or special accommodations to attend any of these events, contact the UICHR at 319-335-3900 or

Founded in 1999, the UICHR is a direct outgrowth of Global Focus: Human Rights '98, the yearlong UI commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of Dec. 10, 1948. Initiated by a multidisciplinary group of faculty, the center's mission is to support the promotion and protection of human rights at home and abroad by providing leadership in human rights research, education, and public service to the UI, its surrounding community, the state of Iowa, and beyond.

The UICHR is affiliated with UI International Programs, which consists of a number of offices, centers, academic programs, research projects and services. Organized under the associate provost and dean for international programs, these units serve to further internationalize the campus and community and promote global scholarship, research and teaching.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

CONTACTS: Media: Lois Gray, 319-335-2026,; Program: 319-335-3900,; Writer: Julia LaBua