Closing General Session: “Moving Away From Hate — A Way Forward”

Date: Oct 27 2020

EMBARGOED UNTIL Oct. 28, 2:30 p.m. MT
Contact: Media Relations 

The Closing General Session will conclude APHA’s 2020 Annual Meeting and Expo with a virtual discussion about the state of hate groups in our nation. It is scheduled for 2:30–4 p.m. Mountain Time on Oct. 28. The session will feature Psychiatrist Patrice Harris, MD, MA, spirit-centered activist Aqeela Sherrills and human rights advocate Margaret Huang. Moderated by APHA’s executive director, Georges C. Benjamin, MD, speakers will explore how to form a kinder, more equitable society.

More about the speakers:

  • Patrice Harris, MD, MA, was the first African American woman to be elected president of the American Medical Association. Harris has held leadership positions with the American Psychiatric Association, the Georgia Psychiatric Physicians Association, the Medical Association of Georgia and the Big Cities Health Coalition. She serves as head of the AMA Opioid Task Force and leads efforts to integrate public health, behavioral health and primary care services with support for employment, housing and education.
  • Aqeela Sherrills has dedicated his career to promoting healing in marginalized communities. At age 19, he co-founded the Amer-I-Can program, with the goal of reducing gang violence. Sherrills and his brother created the Community Self-Determination Institute to tackle the issues that underlie crime, drugs and violence. He is director of the Newark Community Street Team, a community-based violence reduction initiative in New Jersey.
  • Margaret Huang is the president and chief executive officer of the Southern Poverty Law Center. Huang fights for social justice and human dignity, advocating against discrimination and oppression. Huang has worked with members of Congress on critical pieces of legislation and has advocated for human rights at the United Nations and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.

Add this session to your personalized schedule.

The APHA Annual Meeting and Expo is the largest and most influential yearly gathering of public health professionals. Themed “Creating the Healthiest Nation: Preventing Violence," this year’s virtual meeting will be held Oct. 24-28. Register or learn more about APHA’s 2020 Annual Meeting. Working members of the news media may register by contacting


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