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National Journal to Host “The Next America: Population 2043” at Drake University

Federal, state, and local education policymakers, practitioners, and experts will meet at Drake University on Wednesday, Oct. 22, to explore how Des Moines’ deepening diversity is impacting its education system while also reflecting the direction of the rest of the country.

National Journal’s The Next America project will host “The Next America: Population 2043” from 9–11:30 a.m. in Parents Hall South of Drake’s Olmsted Center, 2875 University Ave. The event features a keynote address by Catherine Lhamon, assistant secretary for civil rights at the U.S. Department of Education, and a pair of in-depth panel discussions.

Matt Vasilogrambros, 2011 Drake alumnus and staff correspondent for the National Journal, and Des Moines Register Columnist Rekha Basu will lead a discussion featuring Tom Ahart, superintendent of Des Moines Public Schools and two-time Drake alumnus. The panel will center on important challenges and dynamic opportunities Iowa’s public schools are facing as they work to best provide a quality education for their students. Other participants include Mike Vukovich, principal of North High School in Des Moines; Vinh Nguyen, director of Des Moines Public School’s English Language Learners program; and two Des Moines students.

Jill Johnson, associate professor of literacy education, will participate in a panel discussion on changing demographics and their impact on the U.S. education system, moderated by Atlantic Media Editorial Director Ron Brownstein and Iowa Public Radio Interim News Director and Correspondent Rob Dillard. Other panelists include Lori Chesser, senior shareholder and chair of the immigration department at Davis Brown Law Firm; Rob Paral, principal of Rob Paral and Associates; and Joe Henry, president of the League of United Latin American Citizens of Iowa.

The Next America project is a continuing series by the National Journal that explores “the political, economic, and social impacts of profound racial and cultural change facing our nation.” Recent coverage included a sweeping article on Des Moines’ allure with young professionals, an analysis of why Des Moines can be a model for urban schools, and a feature on the availability of low-rent housing.

“The Next America: Population 2043” is free and open to the public, but RSVPs are required to Samantha Zeldin, szeldin@atlanticmedia.com, 202-266-7196. The event will also be streamed live online via http://www.nationaljournal.com/events/the-next-america-population-2043-20141022.

Press wishing to attend “The Next America: Population 2043” should contact Samantha Zeldin at szeldin@atlanticmedia.com or 202-266-7196.


WHAT: National Journal’s “The Next America: Population 2043”
WHEN: Wednesday, October 22, 9- 11:30 a.m. CT
WHERE: Drake University, Olmsted Center, Parents Hall South, 2875 University Avenue

  • Ronald Brownstein, Editorial Director, Atlantic Media
  • Matt Vasilogambros, Staff Correspondent, National Journal
  • Rob Dillard, Correspondent, Iowa Public Radio
  • Rekha Basu, Columnist, Des Moines Register
  • The Honorable Catherine Lhamon, Assistant Secretary, Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education
  • Thomas Ahart, Ed.D., Superintendent, Des Moines Public Schools
  • Nosa Ali, Student, Roosevelt High School
  • Lori Chesser, Senior Shareholder and Chair, Immigration Department, Davis Brown Law Firm; Chair, American Immigration Council
  • Joe Enriquez Henry, President, League of United Latin American Citizens of Iowa
  • Jill Johnson, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Literacy Education, Drake University
  • Vinh Nguyen, Director, ELL Programs, Des Moines Public Schools
  • Rob Paral, Principal, Rob Paral and Associates
  • Brenda Vasquez, Student, Roosevelt High School
  • Michael Vukovich, Principal, North High School

RSVP: Samantha Zeldin, szeldin@atlanticmedia.com, 202-266-7196
Twitter Hashtag: #NJNextAmerica
More Information: http://www.nationaljournal.com/events/the-next-america-population-2043-20141022

This event is hosted by National Journal. It is presented with support from Emerson Collective and with community support from Des Moines Public Schools, Drake University, and United Way of Central Iowa.

Media Contacts:
Samantha Zeldin, szeldin@atlanticmedia.com, 202-266-7196
Jeff Cartwright, jeff@nationaljournal.com, 202-266-7405
Aaron Jaco, aaron.jaco@drake.edu, 515-779-0526