Current Friars Leaders

2018-19 Friars Leaders Speakers & Events

Rhonesha Byng and Tiffany Dufu in Conversation

February 21, 2019 | 3:30 PM | Linda K. Paresky Conference Center

The Simmons Community is invited to join Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellow Rhonesha Byng in conversation with Tiffany Dufu!

Headshot of Rhonesha Byng

Rhonesha Byng is the Founder and CEO of Her Agenda, a digital media platform bridging the gap between ambition and achievement for millennial women. Rhonesha won an Emmy award as part of a team breaking news coverage while she was a field producer with NBC New York, and has also received awards from the Associated Press and other organizations. She has spoken at the White House during the Obama administration and at the United State of Women Summit. Rhonesha is part of the 2017 class of Forbes' 30 Under 30 in both the media and dorm room founders categories and was named one of the 50 Founders to Watch by ESSENCE magazine.

Headshot of Tiffany Dufu

A national expert in women's leadership, Tiffany Dufu is the author of "Drop the Ball" and the Founder and CEO of The Cru. She served as Chief Leadership Office of Levo and was a launch team member of Lean In Network.

Formerly she was president of the White House Project and has been named one of 19 "women who are leading the way" by the Huffington Post. Tiffany serves on the board of Girls Who Code and Simmons University.

Documentary Screening of Dawnland and Q&A with Adam Mazo, Esther Anne, and Mishy Lesser

February 13, 2019 | 6:00 PM | Linda K. Paresky Conference Center

The Simmons Community is invited to a screening of Dawnland: a documentary that delves deep into the practice of indigenous child removal in the United States and its devastating impact on Native American families. The stories of the Wabanaki tribes are uncovered and shared through the investigation of the first government-sanctioned Truth and Reconciliation commission in the state of Maine.

The screening will be followed by a 15-minute Q&A with Adam Mazo (filmmaker), Esther Anne (co-director of Maine-Wabanaki REACH), and Mishy Lesser (Learning Director of the Upstander Project).

Imbolo Mbue

Headshot of Imbolo Mbue

Imbolo Mbue is the New York Times best-selling author of Behold the Dreamers, selected as the Class of 2022 First Year Read.

Behold the Dreamers is a novel about a young Cameroonian family living in Harlem, New York, in the year leading up to the financial crisis of 2008. Jende Jonga lands a job working as a chauffeur for Clark Edwards, senior executive at the Lehman Brothers, in the fall of 2007. His wife, Neni, is eventually hired as a household help for the Edwards family. Barely making ends meet, they hope that their newly secured positions will enable them to live the "American dream" and provide a better life for their six-year old son. But over the course of their work, Jende and Neni begin to witness skirmishes, infidelities, and family secrets, and are forced to make difficult decisions culminating in a dramatic upending following the collapse of the Lehman Brothers in 2008.

Imbolo Mbue is a native of Limbe, Cameroon and a graduate of Columbia and Rutgers universities. She currently resides in New York City.