La Grua Center Presents Stories of Resilience: Encountering Racism October 7

Panel Discussion & Exhibit Opening: Stories of Resilience: Encountering Racism
Wednesday, October 7 at 6pm

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For questions contact: La Grua Center at 860.535.2300

The Stories of Resilience: Encountering Racism exhibition will kick off at La Grua Center with a free hour-long panel discussion featuring exhibit contributors on Wednesday, October 7 at 6pm on Zoom; ticket reservations are necessary and available free of charge at

The exhibit highlights the lives of five exceptional residents of New London County, past and present—attorney Lonnie Braxton, Rev. Florence Clarke, Sonalysts Board member Donetta Hodge, Coast Guard Commander (Ret.) Merle Smith, and 19th century freed slave and teacher Ichabod Pease. Stories of Resilience showcases their determination, bravery, and strength in the face of personal and systemic racism. The exhibit paints a picture of remarkable successes in the face of daunting obstacles through personal photographs, artifacts, and video testimonies.

Developed as part of the Jewish Federation of Eastern Connecticut’s Encountering Differences program, a unique opportunity for students to learn about racism through the eyes of local residents, the exhibition explores segregation, the migration North, the Civil Rights Movement, systemic racism, and current acute manifestations of racism. The exhibit is an integral part of the group’s efforts to break down racial and cultural barriers and confront hatred and prejudice given the rise in racial incidents occurring locally and on school campuses.

Through the exhibition and related programs, visitors are encouraged to think about how they can promote change and advocacy in their communities as well as and examine their own responsibilities in creating a just society.

Panelists include attorney Lonnie Braxton, Rev. Florence Clarke, and Sonalysts Board member Donetta Hodge. The panel will be moderated by Jerry Fischer, retired Executive Director of the Jewish Federation of Eastern Connecticut.

The exhibition is supported in part by the Dominion Energy Charitable Foundation, with special thanks to the Lyman Allyn Art Museum, where the exhibit opened in February, for their assistance.

The exhibit will be open for viewing Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays 10am-2pm October 7 through December 19; and by appointment by calling La Grua Center at 860-535-2300.