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Archive for June, 2013

Local bands to compete for chance to perform at UT Music Fest 2013

Local bands will have the chance to take the stage at the popular and growing Music Fest at The University of Toledo.

Musicians interested in performing at one of the area’s largest outdoor music festivals can upload a live performance YouTube video to the event’s Facebook page for a chance to be selected as an opening act for Music Fest 2013 Friday, Sept. 13 on UT’s Main Campus.

“We debuted the local band challenge last year with the Dumb Easies and it was a great opportunity to showcase local talent while getting the community involved in choosing the artists,” said Lawrence J. Burns, UT vice president for external affairs. “We are excited about our fourth Music Fest as this tradition of inviting music lovers to campus continues.”

Videos no longer than five minutes can be uploaded to the MusicFest Facebook page from Monday, July 1 through Sunday, July 7. The YouTube video should include the band name and the words “UT Local Band Challenge” in the title.

The top 10 bands with strong musical talent, unique sound and energetic performances will be selected as finalists and have their videos posted on Facebook starting Tuesday, July 9. Voting will continue through Monday, July 15 with the winner announced Tuesday, July 16.

The winning band will receive $750 and the opportunity to play in front of a crowd of excited fans at Music Fest 2013.

For more information visit

Click here to download a high resolution Music Fest logo.

Media Coverage
The Blade (July 17, 2013)
The Independent Collegian (Aug. 14, 2013)

UT Lake Erie Center to host an Adopt-a-Beach cleanup

The UT Lake Erie Center is teaming up with Barefoot Wines and the Alliance for the Great Lakes tohost a public Adopt-a-Beach cleanup on Friday, June 28 at Maumee Bay State Park in Oregon, Ohio.

“Cleanup efforts like this are a great way to increase public awareness about the value of the Lake Erie ecosystem, and the importance of caring for it,” said Meredith Gray, UT communications and technology specialist.

The cleanup will take place 4-6 p.m. at the Lake Erie beach at Maumee Bay State Park, followed by a free celebration party inside the Maumee Bay Lodge and Conference Center until 8:30 p.m., featuring surf-inspired fare and Barefoot Wine (for volunteers 21 and older).

The Adopt-a-Beach program helps clean up Great Lakes beaches and shorelines with a special celebration recognizing volunteers’ efforts.

In 2012, more than 12,000 Adopt-a-Beach volunteers removed 42,351 pounds of trash at 327 locations in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, New York, Ohio and Wisconsin.

Gray encourages members of the University community to volunteer to assist the UT Lake Erie Center with its mission to engage the community in environmental education, sustainable living, and informed outreach awareness programs through the fun Adopt-a-Beach program.

For more information, visit or contact Gray directly at or 419.530.8361.

UT constitutional law professors available to discuss same-sex marriage decisions


The Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled that the Defense of Marriage Act law that denied federal benefits to legally married same-sex couples is unconstitutional.

UT constitutional law professors Rebecca Zietlow and Lee Strang are available today to discuss the decision on DOMA, as well as Proposition 8, California’s ban on same-sex marriage.

“As the states decide same-sex couples can legally marry, it will be recognized not only in the states where they live, but also under federal law. This is a huge decision and will impact many regarding federal tax and social security benefits,” Zietlow said.


“If you’re a fan of same-sex marriage you’ve seen some movement in your direction. If you are a fan of traditional marriage, you haven’t seen the Supreme Court mandate same-sex marriage,” Strang said.

Contact Meghan Cunningham at 419.350.3879 to schedule an interview with Zietlow and/or Strang.

Media Coverage
The Blade (June 27, 2013)
WNWO and WTOL 11 (June 27, 2013)
Leading Edge with Jerry Anderson (July 1, 2013)
Deadline Now (July 19, 2013)

UT law professors offer opposing views on Voting Rights Act decision

The Supreme Court on Tuesday declared the Voting Rights Act’s “preclearance” formula unconstitutional for not taking into account changing circumstances.

UT College of Law Professor Lee Strang said the Supreme Court was correct in its opinion that protects state autonomy and limited the power of Congress.

“The Court ruled that Congress could not limit state sovereignty by relying on 40-year old evidence of state wrongdoing,” Strang said. “Instead, because states retain the authority to regulate their own electoral practices, Congress must have better evidence of current state violations of voting rights to justify the Voting Rights Act’s restrictions.”

UT Associate Professor of Law Benjamin Davis said the Court’s decision is a setback oblivious to history and universal standards would be too watered down to protect the rights to vote of the week, the poor and the minority.

“As a matter of international law, meaningful participation in one’s governance as part of internal self-determination in a state is a human right. Voting is at the heart of that expression,” Davis said. “Similarly, elimination of racial discrimination through our narrow lens of diversity is also a human right. These are sad days of the United States turning back the clock.”

Contact Meghan Cunningham at 419.350.3879 to schedule an interview with Strang and/or Davis.

Media Coverage
13 ABC (June 26, 2013)

UT law professor available to comment on affirmative action decision



The Supreme Court on Monday made an unexpected decision regarding affirmative action in college admissions policies that continues to allow race to be used as a factor, but puts more weight on the university to prove that race-based affirmative action is needed to achieve diversity goals, according to UT College of Law Professor Lee Strang.

“Many people thought this was a chance for the Supreme Court to say two thumbs up or two thumbs down to race-based admissions policies, but it didn’t do that. The court dodged the question,” Strang said. “There is some strong language not favorable to race-based affirmative action, but it doesn’t give it a thumbs down.”

The decision continues to allow colleges and universities to use race as a factor in admissions policies, but it held that public institutions need to show good reasons to use race-based means to achieve the educational diversity goal. It puts the emphasis on the institution to prove, through studies or other means, that non-race-based alternatives to achieving a critical mass will not work, Strang said.

Contact Meghan Cunningham at 419.350.3879 to schedule an interview with Professor Strang.

U.S. Dept. of Energy hosts clean energy manufacturing forum at U of Toledo

What: The U.S. Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy will hold the Clean Energy Manufacturing Initiative-Midwest Summit, focusing on clean energy industries and technologies. The Summit will bring together more than 200 business, elected, regional economic development and university leaders to discuss concrete ways to expand and promote clean energy manufacturing throughout the region.

Where: The daylong forum will be held at The University of Toledo Memorial Field House on June 21 from 8 a.m. to 5:15 p.m.

Who: In addition to the more than a dozen industry leaders, speakers will include U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, U.S. Rep. Marcy Kaptur, Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy David Danielson, University of Toledo President Lloyd Jacobs and Council on Competitiveness President & CEO Deborah Wince- Smith.

8 – 8:30 a.m. — Welcome & Keynote Addresses
•  Dr. Lloyd Jacobs, president, University of Toledo
•  U.S. Representative Marcy Kaptur
•  Dr. David Danielson, assistant secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, U.S. Dept. of Energy

9:45 – 10 a.m. — Keynote
•  U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown

5 – 5:15 p.m. — Concluding Remarks
•  Deborah Wince-Smith, president & CEO, U.S. Council on Competitiveness
•  Dr. David Danielson, assistant secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, U.S. Dept. of Energy

Media Coverage
13 ABC and WNWO (June 25, 2013)

Northwest Ohio students to experience to medical school at CampMed

Teenagers today and potential physicians tomorrow will learn the tools of the trade and practice their clinical skills at the 16th annual CampMed program at The University of Toledo.

The 36 students who will be freshman next year in high schools across northwest Ohio will get a taste of medical school for two days participating in hands-on lessons making wrist casts and suturing wounds, as well as taking tours of Life Flight helicopters and Mobile ICU vehicles. (Click here for list of participants)

CampMed is a scholarship program at no cost to the students, most of whom are first generation-college, minority, rural, and other underrepresented groups.

“It’s imperative to reach out to young people early to nurture their interests in science and discovery. Their dreams for the future, which for some might include becoming a doctor, are attainable and we want to show them there are people who want to help,” said Kathy Vasquez, director of the UT and Ohio Area Health Education Center (AHEC) programs and UT’s associate vice president for government relations.

“CampMed gives students the opportunity to learn first-hand what it’s like to be in the medical field before they even start high school. The participants really enjoy learning from current students in the UT College of Medicine and Life Sciences.”

The two-day CampMed program will be held Thursday, June 20 and Friday, June 21 on the UT Health Science Campus.

The labs 12:30 – 3:30 p.m. Thursday and 1-4 p.m. Friday provide interactive photo and video opportunities of students engaged in hands-on lessons. (Click here for schedule)

The camp is sponsored by the UT AHEC program, which along with other programs throughout the country, strives to improve the health of individuals and communities by developing the healthcare workforce. UT medical students serve as camp counselors and the students also will interact with physicians and professors.

The students begin Thursday morning after the welcoming ceremonies with a “Tools of the Trade” session where they learn to use medical instruments like blood pressure cuffs and stethoscopes. Lessons continue for two days learning CSI-style forensic science, experiencing what its like to suit up in surgical gear, touring a gross anatomy lab and more.

CampMed, which works to spark interest in the medical field for the students entering high school, began in 1998. The competitive program requires students to submit a letter of recommendation, a nomination from a science or math teacher or counselor, and a personal essay to be chosen to participate.

Media Coverage
The Blade (June 21, 2013)

4th National Conference on Restorative Justice to be held June 19-21

Presenters include Dr. Angela Davis, Tim Wise and Dr. Shakti Butler

This June, The National Association of Community and Restorative Justice will bring together faith leaders, educators, judges, politicians, policy makers, practitioners and community members from 31 states and 3 countries to explore race and the use of restorative justice principles and practices in today’s world.Conference

The 4th National Conference on Restorative Justice will take place in Toledo, Ohio, USA at The Hotel at UTMC (formerly the Hilton Hotel) from June 19 through 21.

Sponsored by Lourdes University and The University of Toledo, this year’s conference features international speakers and experts in the field of Restorative Justice, including:

Keynote Speaker: Angela Davis, Ph.D.
A Distinguished Professor Emerita of History of Consciousness at the University of California, in Santa Cruz, Dr. Davis is a founding member of Critical Resistance, a national organization dedicated to dismantling the industrial prison complex. She is also an affiliate of Sisters Inside, an abolitionist organization based in Australia that works in solidarity with women in prison.

Guest Speaker: Tim Wise
Named one of the “25 Visionaries who are Changing the World” by Utne Reader, Mr. Wise is an international speaker (in all 50 states, Canada and Bermuda, and on more than 800 campuses), and author of 6 books on race issues. A recipient of the 2001 British Diversity Award for best feature essay on race issues, he is also a regular contributor on CNN and ABC’s 20/20.

Shakti Butler, Ph.D.
A filmmaker and racial justice educator, Dr. Butler is a master at inviting people to see themselves as indelibly connected to each other and the world we live in. A multiracial African-American woman (African, Arawak Indian, and Russian-Jewish) whose work as a creative and visionary bridge builder has challenged and inspired learning for over two decades. She hopes to offer her presentation via live video streaming at San Quentin prison.

Theo Gavrielides, Ph.D.
Founder and Director of the youth-led social policy think-tank Independent Academic Research Studies (IARS), Dr. Gavrielides is an Advisory Board Member of the Institute for Diversity Research, Inclusivity, Communities and Society (IDRICS), Faculty of Society & Health, at Buckinghamshire New University in the UK.

Ericka Huggins
A professor in Sociology at Laney & Berkeley City College, and Women’s Studies at California State University, East Bay, Ms. Huggins has been a political activist since the 1960’s. She founded the Black Panther Party in New Haven, CT, and remains the party’s longest running female leader. Other accomplishments include establishing the Oakland Unified School District sponsored After School Academy with the help of Maya Angelou and the Bay Area United Fund.

Pete Lee, Lynn Lee, Sharletta Evans
Colorado State Representative of District 18 Pete Lee helped establish Colorado’s Restorative Justice Bill. His wife Lynn serves as Chair of the Pikes Peak Restorative Justice Council and has received the John Gallagher Restorative Justice Volunteer of the Year award. Sharletta Evans is a Certified Addiction Counselor and founded the Red Cross Blue Shield Gang Prevention Inc., a non-profit, faith-based organization offering an alternative to gangs and activities.

Katherine van Wormer, Ph.D.
A professor of Social Work at the University of Northern IA, Dr. van Wormer has worked extensively in the field of substance abuse counseling and has co-authored and authored a total of 16 books. Her most recent work is titled Restorative Justice Today: Practical Applications.

Robert Yazzie, J.D.
A member of the Navajo Nation Bar Association, Mr. Yazzie practiced law for 16 years, serving as Chief Justice for the Navajo Nation from 1992 until his retirement in 2003. He currently serves as Visiting Professor at the University of New Mexico School of Law, Adjunct Professor of the Department of Criminal Justice at Northern Arizona University, and Visiting Faculty for the National Judicial College. He will speak with Navajo Peacemaker Ruthie Alexius.

Registration is $300 per person. Day pass, single event, and group rates are available upon request. For more information visit

The National Association of Community and Restorative Justice is a non-profit organization that provides a professional association for educators, practitioners and others interested in restorative and community justice. The primary means to fulfill this purpose are educational and will be carried out through the National Conference on Restorative Justice and a membership accessible website. The Association will use principles of social and restorative justice to assist educators, practitioners and others to seek transformation in the ways justice questions are addressed within the United States. The Association will promote effective forms of justice that are equitable, sustainable and socially constructive.

Sponsored by:

                                                                   Lourdes             UT

Media Coverage
The Blade (June 17, 2013)
The Blade (June 20, 2013)
The Blade (June 22, 2013)
13 ABC (June 24, 2013)

UToledo to present Vietnam veteran with his POW/MIA bracelet

When Patty James was a little girl, her mother gave her a POW/MIA bracelet with the name “COL LAWRENCE GUARINO 6-14-1965.”

She wore that bracelet everyday for years, until she remembers her mother calling her to see on the news that Col. Guarino had returned home safely.

It has been years, but James, who works as administrative assistant to The University of Toledo President Lloyd Jacobs, thought of the colonel again recently when Toledo recognized Vietnam-era veterans. The Vietnam-Era Veterans Appreciation Event June 5-9 included a welcome home ceremony hosted by the University and the American Veteran Traveling Tribute and The Traveling Wall on display in the city.

James was surprised to learn from a video message from Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel shared at the ceremony at UT that there are more than 1,600 POW/MIA still unaccounted for from the Vietnam War. That’s when she shared the story of the bracelet with Haraz Ghanbari, military and media liaison at the University. After a bit of research by Ghanbari, Col. Guarino was located residing at a retirement community an hour outside Orlando.

Ghanbari is traveling to Melbourne, Fla. today to present the bracelet to the veteran on behalf of James, who also is sending a personal note to the colonel.

The presentation will take place 4 p.m. today (Friday, June 14) at Sonata at Melbourne, 3260 N. Harbor City Blvd., Melbourne, Fla. Today is 48 years to the date Col. Guarino became a POW (June 14) and nearly 40 years since the end of the Vietnam War.

The presentation will include an honor guard from the Patrick Air Force Base near Cocoa Beach, Fla.

For more information contact Haraz Ghanbari on his mobile phone at 202.288.2102.

UT expert: Supreme Court decision that genes not patentable will disrupt biotech industry, investors



University of Toledo Professor of Law Llew Gibbons said today that the Supreme Court adhered to “first principles of patent law” when it decided unanimously that human genes could not be patented. Scientists and researchers had challenged a patent by a Utah biotech firm saying it interfered with their ability to conduct research on behalf of patients.

“This is a well written, clear opinion that is in line with the first principles of patent law. The Court has balanced with nuance the need to promote innovation through patent law and protect the public’s interest,” Gibbons said.

“However, as the Court noted, this opinion will be disruptive to the settled expectations of the biotech industry — especially investors — and the court hinted that Congress may need to act.”