KU News Release


October 24, 2012
Contact: Kathy Rose-Mockry, Emily Taylor Center for Women and Gender Equity, 785-864-3552

Women's equality leader Lilly Ledbetter to speak at KU

Lily Ledbetter


LAWRENCE— Lilly Ledbetter was employed by Goodyear Tire and Rubber for 19 years before she discovered that she was paid far less for the same work as her male peers were being paid. After fighting tirelessly for over a decade (taking her case all the way to the Supreme Court), the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act was passed by Congress and signed into law as President Obama’s first official act. Her recently released memoir is titled “Grace and Grit” and tells her triumphant story in the fight for equal pay.

Ledbetter will give this year’s lecture for the Jana Mackey Distinguished Lecture Series, “‘And Justice for All? Why Equal Pay for Women Matters to Everyone” at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 1 at the Kansas Union Woodruff Auditorium at the University of Kansas. Her presentation will be followed by a book signing of “Grace and Grit.”

The Jana Mackey Distinguished Lecture Series was established in 2009 to commemorate late women’s rights activist and KU law student Jana Lynne Mackey.

Mackey, 25, was found dead in her ex-boyfriend’s home on July 3, 2008. At KU, Mackey was a second year-law student and an active member of the Commission on the Status of Women. Dedicated to promoting equality for women, Mackey volunteered for GaDuGi SafeCenter, as a lobbyist in Kansas for the National Organization of Women and on several political campaigns. She received a bachelor’s degree in women’s studies from KU in 2004.

The Jana Mackey Distinguished Lecture Series is sponsored by the Emily Taylor Center for Women and Gender Equity in collaboration with the following KU entities: Commission on the Status of Women; Office of Diversity and Equity; Office of Multicultural Affairs; School of Law; School of Social Welfare; Student Bar Association; Student Involvement and Leadership Center; Student Senate; Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies Department, and Women in Law; and two community organizations: GaDuGi SafeCenter and Willow Domestic Violence Center. Support has also been provided by the Multicultural Education Fund and Jana’s Campaign.

The program is free and open to the public. Seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis.

For more information about Jana and this lecture series, visit online.



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The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression, and genetic information in the university’s programs and activities. Retaliation is also prohibited by university policy. The following persons have been designated to handle inquiries regarding the nondiscrimination policies and are the Title IX coordinators for their respective campuses: Executive Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity & Access, IOA@ku.edu, 1246 West Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS 66045, 785-864-6414, 711 TTY (for the Lawrence, Edwards, Parsons, Yoder, and Topeka campuses); Director, Equal Opportunity Office, Mail Stop 7004, 4330 Shawnee Mission Parkway, Fairway, KS 66205, 913-588-8011, 711 TTY (for the Wichita, Salina, and Kansas City, Kansas, medical center campuses).