Winners will Give Speech on Racial and Social Justice at the Campus Progress National Conference, July 6 in Washington, DC

June 8, 2011 (Washington, DC) -- Campus Progress and today announced the three grand prize winners of the 2011 National Keynote Contest. The contest, which was launched in April, called on young people to speak their minds about racial and social justice for a chance to win a free trip to Washington, DC on July 6 to address over 1,000 attendees at the 2011 Campus Progress National Conference.

This year’s winners are:

Kiara Lee from Richmond, VA: an activist, filmmaker and author who is shedding light on the realities of discrimination within ethnic groups:

Daniel Khalessi from Stanford, CA: an Iranian-American who is raising awareness about the intersection between US foreign policy and race relations at home:

Stephanie Tanny from Denver, CO: an activist who is working to combat sexual violence on college campuses:

Videos submitted were featured on the Contest YouTube page, where the public voted on their favorites. Campus Progress and staff then picked the three grand prize winners from among the top five most popular video submissions, taking into consideration the power of their message and their speaking ability.  

“We were really impressed by the quality of the entries we received, and it was very tough to pick just three winners,” said Campus Progress Video Communications Associate Tara Kutz. “In the end, the winners we chose stood out because they all bring a unique, powerful and personal perspective to the conversation about racial and social justice. Campus Progress believes that young people have a key role to play in the discussion around these issues, and we are looking forward to seeing the winners share their experiences on a national stage.”

"These entries, and all the entries we received, showed something that can't be ignored: young people are inheriting a world in which race still matters," said Editorial Director Kai Wright. "Racial inequity hasn't been solved with a single election, or with silence."

The 2011 Campus Progress National Conference will center on the theme “Turning Truth to Power,” emphasizing ways in which young people are turning their vision of a better world into a strong progressive youth movement that demands – and achieves – positive change. For more information about the Conference, please visit:

For more information or to speak to contest winners, please contact Katie Andriulli at [email protected] / (202) 481-8238 or Rebekah Spicuglia at [email protected] / (415) 290-2970.


About Campus Progress

Campus Progress is the youth division of the Center for American Progress, a nonpartisan, nonprofit progressive organization. Through programs in activism, journalism, and events, Campus Progress helps young people make their voices heard now on issues that matter, and works with young leaders and organizations nationwide to build a strong, united progressive movement that can bring long-term positive change. Campus Progress runs a daily web magazine,; supports student publications on 50 campuses; supports local and national youth issue campaigns; and has held over 900 events. For more information, please visit


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