Moderated Q&A with Danielle Allen & Students

Day 1: November 14, 2023 | 9:45 a.m. – 10:30 a.m., Varsity Hall

Session Video

Session Description

Following the keynote lecture, Danielle Allen will take questions from UW students and the audience.


Danielle Allen

DR. DANIELLE ALLEN—Dr. Danielle Allen is a professor of public policy, politics, and ethics at Harvard University, Director of the Allen Lab for Renovating Democracy at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Ash Center and James Bryant Conant University Professor, one of Harvard’s highest honors. She is also a seasoned nonprofit leader, democracy advocate, national voice on pandemic response, distinguished author, and mom. Her work to make the world better for young people has taken her from teaching college and leading a $60 million university division to driving change at the helm of a $6 billion foundation, writing for The Washington Post, advocating for cannabis legalization, democracy reform, and civic education, and most recently, to running for governor of Massachusetts. During the height of COVID in 2020, Allen’s leadership in rallying coalitions and building solutions resulted in the country’s first-ever Roadmap to Pandemic Resilience; her policies were adopted in federal legislations and a Biden executive order. 

Allen made history as the first Black woman ever to run for statewide office in Massachusetts. She continues to advocate for democracy reform to create greater voice and access in our democracy, and drive progress towards a new social contract that serves and includes us all. Her many books include the widely acclaimed Our Declaration: A Reading of the Declaration of Independence in Defense of Equality;   the memoir, Cuz: The Life and Times of Michael A, and, most recently, Justice By Means of Democracy, a bold and urgent articulation of a new political philosophy: power-sharing liberalism. She is a recipient of the MacArthur Foundation “Genius” grant and the John W. Kluge Prize for Achievement in the Study of Humanity, an award administered by the Library of Congress that recognizes work in disciplines not covered by the Nobel Prizes.

Thumbnail of speaker Danielle Allen.

Kelly Chen Wu

Kelly is a senior from Vancouver, BC majoring in Sociology and Legal Studies with certificates in French and Criminal Justice. She is the Co-President of the Asian American Student Union, the program intern for the Mercile J. Lee Scholars Program, and a coach at Academic Coaching to Thrive & Succeed (ACTS) in the Division of Diversity, Equity & Educational Achievement. With a special interest in the sociology of law, Kelly plans to pursue a career as a family attorney.

Thumbnail of speaker Kelly Chen Wu.

Caleb Aguirre

Caleb is a citizen of Oneida Nation of Wisconsin, belongs to the turtle clan, and has been an active member of his community. He is a junior and PEOPLE scholar from Green Bay, double majoring in Psychology and Philosophy. He is currently involved with research examining the impact racial discrimination and injustice has on Native American self-identity and plans to pursue a career in clinical psychology. Caleb lives with mild spastic diplegia, a form of Cerebral Palsy. Despite the challenges of living with his disability – and in many ways because of them – he has achieved academic and professional success, and is proud to exemplify the fact that disability need not define who someone is, or limit what they can become.

Thumbnail of speaker Caleb Aguirre.