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Hood Theological Seminary lecture series to feature distinguished scholar, activist 

Hood Theological Seminary will hold its annual Ruben L. Speaks Endowed Memorial Lecture Series on Oct. 4-5.

This year’s featured presenter is scholar and activist Miguel De La Torre, professor of social ethics and Latin studies at Iliff School of Theology.

The lectures, which are free and open to the public, will be held at 7 p.m. Oct. 4 and 10:10 a.m. Oct. 5 in Albert J.D. Aymer Center on campus. The lecture is titled “Embracing Hopelessness.”

Miguel De La Torre

De La Torre’s academic interest is in social ethics, specifically in contemporary U.S. thought and how religion affects race, class and gender oppression. De La Torre holds a Ph.D. and master’s degree from Temple University, a master’s of divinity from Southern Baptist Theological University, a master’s in public administration from American University, and a bachelor’s degree from Florida International University.

The Iliff School of Theology is in Denver. De La Torre has written more than 100 articles and published 33 books — five have won national awards — since obtaining his doctorate in 1999. 

A Fulbright scholar, he has taught in Indonesia, Mexico, South Africa and Germany. In his guild, he served as the 2012 president of the Society of Christian Ethics. In the academy, he is a past director to the American Academy of Religion; past chairman of the Committee for Racial and Ethnic Minorities in the Profession; past chairman of the Ethics Program Section; written the “AAR Career Guide;” served on the program committee; and presently serves on the editorial board of JAAR. 

Additionally, he is co-founder and executive director of the Society of Race, Ethnicity and Religion and founding editor of the Journal of Race, Ethnicity and Religion.

De La Torre has written numerous articles in popular media and has served in several civic organizations. Recently, he wrote the screenplay of a documentary on immigration, “Trails of Hope and Terror,” which has screened in over 18 film festivals, winning more than seven film awards.

The Ruben L. Speaks Endowed Memorial Lecture Series is named in honor of the late Bishop Ruben Lee Speaks, an African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church leader acknowledged on numerous occasions for his leadership and creative engagement in ministry. Speaks received the Chancellor’s Award at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington and the Distinguished Citizen Award from the Brooklyn Advisory Committee of the New York Urban League. 

Hood Theological Seminary, located at 1810 Lutheran Synod Drive, is a graduate and professional school sponsored by the A.M.E. Zion Church. Its student body, faculty and staff include people from many denominations. 

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