March 22, 2010

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By Julia Ferrante

LEWISBURG, Pa. — A panel of experts on civic engagement and humanitarian action will discuss "Leadership, Change and the Impact of Individuals" on Tuesday, April 6, in the final event of the Bucknell Forum series, "Global Leadership: Questions for the 21st Century."

The panel discussion, which will focus on civic leadership, the power of organization and the impact that individuals can have on communities, will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Trout Auditorium at Bucknell University. The event, which will feature an extended question-and-answer session, is free and open to the public.

"This distinguished panel will offer a broad array of perspectives in describing how individuals can turn their ideals into action locally and globally," said Susan Hopp, dean of students and a member of the Bucknell Forum Task Force. "We expect that our students, in particular, as future leaders with a strong commitment to civic engagement, will be inspired by this discussion." || Complete provided panel biographies

The panelists:

Richard Heinzl: After graduating from medical school, in 1988, Heinzl founded the Canada chapter of the Nobel Peace Prize-winning humanitarian organization, Doctors Without Borders. He became the organization's first field volunteer, providing medical care to patients in remote Cambodia, inspiring hundreds of others to follow suit.


A frequent speaker, Heinzl also discusses his experiences as a doctor in the midst of war and monumental democratic change in his memoir, Cambodia Calling. Heinzl has been named one of the "Hundred People Who Make a Difference in Canada," and was among those listed in a Report on Business' "Top 40 Under 40" list.

April Pedersen, executive director of DemocracyInAction, co-founded the organization in 2003 "with the belief that technology has a critical role to play in building a progressive infrastructure both in the United States and abroad," according to the organization's website.


DemocracyInAction has assisted service agencies in online engagement, helping them to share their missions and resources for social change with the help of technology. Pedersen also is a founder and principle of Wired For Change, a mission-oriented company providing online engagement tools to political campaigns, political action committees and state Democratic parties

Cristóbal Joshua Alex, program officer for the Open Society Institute's Democracy and Power Fund, manages the fund's civic engagement portfolio and strategizes to inspire public participation from underrepresented communities, develop new leaders and generate innovate solutions to address threats to democracy and advance social justice.


Before joining OSI, Cristóbal was director of the National Campaign to Restore Civil Rights, where he led a coalition of more than 100 organizations to help ensure that the courts protect and preserve justice, fairness and opportunity for everyone.

Julie Segal, founder of Civic Action Strategies, will moderate the discussion. Civic Action Strategies is a team of advocacy experts that works closely with grassroots activists, lawmakers, nongovernmental and faith-based organizations, donors, and the media throughout the world.


An attorney who specializes in strategic planning and mobilizing citizen political action, Segal has appeared as a commentator on National Public Radio, Court TV, C-Span and Univision. Before starting Civic Action Strategies, Segal worked for two years in Kosovo, directing civic participation and democracy development programs for U.S. and European organizations.

Bucknell Forum
The Bucknell Forum: "Global Leadership: Questions for the 21st Century" is a national speakers series focused on major issues at the forefront of today's discourse. Launched in spring 2009, it has featured nationally renowned leaders, scholars and commentators who have examined these issues from multi-disciplinary perspectives and a diversity of viewpoints to provide a model for civil discourse.

The next Bucknell Forum series, "Creativity: Beyond the Box," will begin this fall. Speakers and details will be announced later this spring.

Contact: Division of Communications